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Monday, June 26, 2006

Southern Baptist's No No

Well, every year after the SBC meets at their annual convention the world gets to hear about it. One of the issues at this year's gathering was their stance on drinking alcohol. While stopping short of officially preventing drinkers from serving in the SBC, it "urges" that no one be elected or appointed to SBC offices if they are "a user of alcohol."

Read more HERE or HERE.

Different cultures can be a funny thing. The south can be an odd place when it comes to religion. I do find it a bit strange that the southern culture tends to have no issue in putting having a glass of wine right up there with actual sins such as lust, lying, or stealing. One would think that we could all make each other stronger as we are the body. I hope that by this post I am doing nothing but helping us all think (including myself). I realize that thinking out loud (blog and all) that the whole world gets to hear our thoughts.

Please realize that I don't have life figured out. I am on a journey. I do however like to ask questions and talk about things that some tend to stay clear of just to play it safe. Now, with that being said...

I'm not sure how wise it is to pass resolutions that functionally condemn the actions of Jesus (Luke 7:33-34; John 2 ) and Paul (1 Tim. 5:23). Also, I'm not sure it's wise to prohibit that which God has given as a gift (Deut. 14:26; Ps. 104:15). I realize that wine back in Jesus' day might have been different than the wine today. (I hope it was as tasty):)

Where it is true that excessive alcohol consumption has and is ruining many families. What about pride and arrogance? There are many other issues that need to be addressed as well. Gluttony (& obesity) for example is affecting many families all over the USA. What about pornography addiction, lust, and ethics?

17 Comments:

Blogger nate said...

amen brotha

1:16 AM  
Anonymous Stephen said...

Do you think that, even though they're just 'urging' that people who drink not be elected, that it won't now be viewed as a principle requirement?

9:23 AM  
Blogger *The Blogstar said...

Stephen, that is what I believe.

Just another guideline for control in black and white religion.

Thanks for the input. I like you blog.

Chad

10:37 AM  
Blogger supersimbo said...

wow thats weird though we have same "non-drinking" issues in N.Ireland.............
chad just in case you dont check back on the comment u left on my blog............YES man you could do "Worship Ireland" next summer, we are opening up talks to do a major event in our town next summer to try and affect the community and tackle the sectarianism in a psoitive God driven way..............i will post more about it after our 1st meeting

12:31 PM  
Anonymous Mister Nashville said...

The South is very different than other areas of the country. While in Nashville, Atlanta, or some other larger city, we become disconnected from the true south where there are fewer people. I grew up in and have been to many little towns all across the south where unemployment, poverty, and ruin have infected communities horribly. Excessive drinking has been and still is a killer in many of these places.

I love wine and I love settling in for 2-for-1 at McCreary's. But while I am not against drinking, I am aware that a tremendous amount of Southern Baptist churches are in these little towns all across the south where drinking "IS" one of those gigantic sins. You would never find me drinking while I was a youth pastor at churches in Georgia and Texas.

The SBC, while it can be disconnected in some areas, is very connected to the South's past and present dismal poverty and misery of alcoholism. They have other fish to fry, but this one is still cooking.

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Nathan G said...

I would like to say that I love a good drink every now and then. But I have vowed not to in my current place of ministry. At first, I thought it was just a stupid rule that the church had that I didn't agree with. Then, I read an article that didn't necessarily change my view point all together, but definitely made me think a little more and understand where, I think, a lot of Southern Baptists are coming from. It was an article from a guy named Norman I. Geisler entitled, "A Christian Perspective on Wine-Drinking".
He basically said that the bible does say "Go then, eat your bread in happiness, and drink your wine with a cheerful heart;for God has already approved of your works." Eccl. 9:7
BUT...
he proceeded to tell of research he had done. It turns out that wine in bible days was basically purified water...that the alcohol content was not anything like it is today. In fact, one would need to drink twenty-two glasses of wine in order to consume the large amount of alcohol in two martinis today. "In other words, it is possible to become intoxicated from wine mixed with three parts water, but one's drinking would probably affect the bladder long before the mind."

And he also pointed out that the bible is very clear in what it calls "Strong drink". (Lev. 10:8-9 and Prov. 20:1)Basically saying that strong drink is a sin.
And today's wine and beer would be considered in bible times as strong drink which is why a lot of churches/people are so uptight on the subject.

Again, I use to love me some 2 for 1's at McCreary's when I lived in Franklin! In fact, I was just talking about it the other day with someone. But I have a little bit more of an understanding of maybe where their heads are at, ya know?

And I am sure some of them...maybe a lot of them, it is a control issue. I bite my thumb at them.

You can read excerpts of this article (I couldn't find the whole thing) at http://www.gospeljohn.com/ng_drinking.htm
Keep in mind that the writer of that particular web site has his own agenda as he is taking bits and pieces of the original article to form his point. The original article is much more...uh...objective to a certain extent.
I hope I haven't bored any of you. :-)

CHEERS!!

1:46 PM  
Blogger Kat Coble said...

First off--are you a member of the SBC? I thought you weren't by the use of "their" twice in the opening paragraph. But then I see you leading worship at The Peoples Church in Franklin, which is a member of the SBC.

If you ARE a member of the SBC, you may be aware of the amount of heartfelt conversation regarding this topic from brethren on both sides of the aisle. While it was a decision that passed handily, it didn't pass without a fair bit of discussion.

If you AREN'T a member of the SBC, I fail to see why our decision about the leadership of our denomination is a matter of such grave concern to you.

I also fail to see how perpetuating the stereotype of 'obesity as a sin' is furthering the advance of the Gospel, showing God's sacrificial love for His people or even making one bit of good sense.

It appears that in your desire to be "hip and with-it", you are overeagerly throwing some good people under the bus who made a decision about their ministry after careful, prayerful consideration.

2:11 PM  
Blogger *The Blogstar said...

I am happy to see discussion.

Everyone is having some good points.

Nathan- I love and respect you for being honest and open.

Kat- Thanks for sharing. Yes, TPC Franklin is indeed part of the SBC. However, I am not a Southern Baptist myself. The majority of people on and off staff are not SBC. I obviously touched a nerve there. To be honest what the SBC is usually only of interest to me b/c it is one of loudest voice of the evangelical church.

I am concerned about distancing ourselves from the world we live b/c of "sacred cows" and not true spiritual conviction.

Thank you ALL continuing to comment and for your time.

Peace

3:15 PM  
Blogger Kat Coble said...

I obviously touched a nerve there.

No. You touched several.

To be honest what the SBC is usually only of interest to me b/c it is one of loudest voice of the evangelical church.

And that "loud voice" said that it would prefer if its leaders didn't drink because of the many problems with excessive drink among its congregants. This is a problem how? The resolution doesn't even bar congregants from drinking.

I'm a Mennonite who attends a Southern Baptist church by reason of proximity and lack of Mennonites in my area. I have no strong allegiance toward the denomination as a whole. But I respect our right to have our own religiocultural choices. Just because there are a lot of us, there is no reason to deny our right to practice our faith as we see fit.

3:50 PM  
Blogger *The Blogstar said...

Kat- Thanks again for your time and comments.

Again, I post things like this for us all to think and converse about. We don't do that enough in the body.

If I offended you in any way (touching nerves and all), please forgive me.

I bid you peace on your journey.

To everyone, on this side we will never fully agree on issues, but to continue crippling ourselves by our pety opinions and hang ups....well, that's frikin' stupid.

10:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kat Coble- I must say that you seem to be way off base here. I think Chad has been saying things to make us all think forward. Sorry if you are now a Southern Baptist, but I think that most of the culture (Christian OR not) are sick of what they have to say instead of truly impacting the culture for the cause of Christ.

Chad, thank you for speaking truth in love. Life would be boring without people like you.

Keep it coming.
SP

10:41 AM  
Blogger Kat Coble said...

I think that most of the culture (Christian OR not) are sick of what they have to say instead of truly impacting the culture for the cause of Christ.


That statement is impacting the world for the cause of Christ how? What "Cause of Christ" is served by saying "we don't like the way you run your church internally"?

4:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wasn't trying to.

Move on.

SP

5:00 PM  
Anonymous Katrina said...

I will second or third the motion that people are kinda sick of having to hear new SBC things.

As Kat has shown, their members usually tend to appear to be more judgmental and superior than most other Christians.

Thanks for helping us think eventhough I don't want to sometimes.

Katrina

10:17 AM  
Blogger Kat Coble said...

As Kat has shown, their members usually tend to appear to be more judgmental and superior than most other Christians.

You clearly don't know me and show your judgmentalism by making that statement.

3:09 PM  
Anonymous Steven said...

Some verses for the discussion.... take it or leave...it's just the bible religous folks.


May God give you of heaven's dew and of earth's richness—an abundance of grain and new wine. (Genesis 27:28)

He will bless the fruit of your womb, the crops of your land—your grain, new wine and olive oil—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks in the land that he swore to your ancestors to give you. (Deuteronomy 7:13)

Fill my heart with joy when their grain and new wine abound. (Psalm 4:7)

He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for people to cultivate—bringing forth food from the earth: wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts. (Psalm 104:14-15)

Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do. (Ecclesiastes 9:7)

"And none of you, after drinking old wine, wants the new, for you say, 'The old is better.'" (Luke 5:39)

Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, "Fill the jars with water"; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, "Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet." They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, "Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now." (John 2:6-10)

Steven

5:51 PM  
Blogger James Gregory said...

although the SBC didn't bar its leaders from drinking as a whole, the common practice of many churches is to go to the extreme and accept legalistic practices, which in this case would take the decision of the SBC to the next level of no drinking, period.

that would not necessarily be the SBCs doing, as many churches are already practicing this form of legalism.

whether baptist or pentecostal, we need to avoid extremes and legalistic practices.

Check out my blog, which touched base on this legalism issue in the American Church a little while ago,
HERE.

7:32 PM  

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