This year’s Southern Baptist Convention caused great excitement for many Southern Baptists. While a few of the usual absurdities were present, the convention showcased greater theological depth, greater passion for missions, and greater unity in diversity. I’ll offer eight highlights and some links to similar efforts.
1. The Great Commission Resurgence – Over the past several months, Pastor Johnny Hunt and Dr. Daniel Akin have led the charge for a Great Commission Resurgence amongst Southern Baptists. While their efforts have met some resistance from a number of SBC leaders, the messengers of the 2009 SBC overwhelmingly passed the Great Commission Task Force motion. Of course, this doesn’t mean that everything is settled. In fact, there is quite a long way to go! Yet, Southern Baptists have come together to show their present desire to see greater faithfulness to the Great Commission.
2. 9 Marks at 9 – Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary partnered with 9 Marks to provide substantive biblical and theological discussions about various issues. Showcasing brief addresses by Pastor Mark Dever and Dr. Akin, on respective nights, followed by lively panel discussions, the 9 Marks event provided the several hundred in attendance the type of discussion not typical, but much needed, for a Southern Baptist Convention.
3. B21 Panel – This luncheon sought to provide Southern Baptists with an opportunity to listen in on a conversation between some of the most important voices in the SBC about the most pressing issues facing the SBC. B21’s Jon Akin ably moderated a panel consisting of convention employees (Dr. Albert Mohler, Dr. Daniel Akin, and Dr. Ed Stetzer) and Pastors (Mark Dever, David Platt, and Daniel Montgomery). The panel touched on everything from the state of preaching, to the GCR, to the significance of the ministries of our state conventions. B21 wasn’t sure if the 450 people who signed up would be willing to make the tricky drive through Louisville’s back roads, but over 600 people showed up! And the panelists’ insights made it worth the extra effort.
4. The Resolution on Adoption and Orphan Care – The acceptance of Dr. Russell Moore’s resolution by Southern Baptists points to a desire to be more faithful in caring for the fatherless. Reading better than many sermons, Dr. Moore’s resolution skillfully ties this effort to its gospel roots. Although the SBC is not known for its racial diversity, if Southern Baptists follow Dr. Moore’s leadership at this point, by God’s grace, 60 years from now, we might be.
5. Pastor’s Conference – There were a number of new faces preaching at the pastor’s conference that many found quite enjoyable. JD Greear, David Platt, Ed Stetzer, Johnny Hunt, Francis Chan, and others, preached God’s word faithfully and passionately, leaving their hearers with much to wrestle with in the following days. With the election of Pastor Kevin Ezell as the president of the Pastor’s Conference next year, Southern Baptists will undoubtedly hear great preaching next year as well.
6. Dinner with David Dockery – A couple of us at B21 were invited to have dinner with Dr. David Dockery on Sunday evening, along with about 15 other young Southern Baptists. It was a fascinating time of conversation about the gospel, the SBC, Alabama football, and much more. Dr. Dockery fielded many questions, speaking with wisdom and clarity. This dinner is worth mentioning because it exemplifies one of many gracious efforts that seasoned Southern Baptist leaders are making all across the convention. While a few whine about a lack of seats at the table, leaders like Dr. Dockery quietly and faithfully offer many young men just that, literally.
7. Johnny Hunt – Pastor Hunt’s leadership of the SBC and love for all of the various types of people that make it up is amazing. Whether preaching at the pastor’s conference, passionately advocating the GCR, sharing a few words to young leaders, personally paying for the lunches of all of the B21 Panel attendees, or whatever, Hunt’s a man worthy of great respect and admiration. Undoubtedly, the GCR resolution would not have passed if it were not for this faithful pastor’s leadership.
8. Four More Key Leaders – We are very excited, and think you should be as well, about the leadership of Dr. Daniel Akin, Dr. Albert Mohler, Dr. Mark Dever, and Dr. David Platt. I know, I know, there are many other key leaders. Agreed. But these four men of God were at the forefront of a number of key happenings throughout this year’s convention, steering Southern Baptists towards greater Gospel faithfulness. Dr. Akin’s sights were set on bringing about a Great Commission Resurgence, whether addressing Southern Baptists in the convention hall, at the 9 Marks event, at the Founder’s Breakfast, or at the B21 Panel. Dr. Mohler ably presented and defended the GCR motion, while also speaking candidly and powerfully at the B21 panel. Dr. Mark Dever, a voice Southern Baptists have long needed to hear, finally was given the opportunity to present his rich biblical views at the 9 Marks and B21 events. Dr. Platt preached several times, while also participating in both 9 Marks and B21 events. I wish this gifted preacher of God’s word spoke several more times!
These eight highlights give me great encouragement. Of course, there’s much to be done. Unless God’s Spirit empowers Christ’s church towards greater faithfulness to the gospel, nothing will come from this. Unless we’re able to put the advancement of the kingdom of Christ amongst the nations above self-preservation, job-preservation…idol-preservation, this year’s convention will be nothing more than a memory. And let’s not kid ourselves, it is not going to be easy. But with God’s help, fervent prayer, and honest conversations, amazing things may come about. Join with us as we pray, think, and talk about these things in the days ahead!
Here are a couple important views/arguments that we think you should interact with or be aware of starting now!
* Mark Dever asks a fascinating question about the possibility of a shift in trust in the SBC
* Ed Stetzer gives his summary of the SBC
* Thom Rainer calls for a great commission resurgence for each one of us
* Alvin Reid recaps the SBC here
* Church planter Jay Hardwick talks both of his survival and enjoyment of the SBC
* Pastor Craig Thompson talks about why he’s going to the SBC again next year
* Timmy Brister talks about his first SBC
Also, check out these stories about the convention:
* ABP’s take on the SBC
* Louisville’s Courier Journal’s perspective
* The Baptist Standard in Texas writes there summary here
Baptist21 is thankful for all who attended and participated in the b21 panel. Thank you for all who tweeted about the event. We are making those tweets available (minus the ReTweets) here. We hope this event was helpful and enjoyable, thank you again for being a part.
Real-time results for #b21
The good folks at B & H Publishing have graciously offered to send a free HCSB to those B21 attendees who did not receive one. Although 450 people signed up to attend the event, over 600 people showed up! With a limited number of Bibles to give away, there were some who did not walk away with a free HCSB. B & H said that if B21 attendees will email their address, they will send them a free HCSB! So, if you attended the event and didn’t receive an HCSB, send your address to email@example.com.
The b21 Panel will be held tomorrow afternoon from 11:45-1:45. We have maxed out capacity for the event and will only have spots available in an overflow room. However, you may keep up with the conference on two different sites. Both Sojourn Community Church and Southern Seminary will be live blogging the event. We invite you to keep up with the event at either of these two locations. You can find the links below. Thanks again for all your support for Baptist21 as we seek to glorify God through events such as this.
Also, we encourage all you tweeters to tweet at the B21 Panel. The hashtag is #b21.
Finally, here are the directions to the b21 panel. Follow them and you should make it to The 930. That’s the name of the building Sojourn Community Church meets at. Look forward to seeing you all there at 11:45 am. Here’s a link to google maps with the map and directions ready to go for you.
Directions to the B21 Panel: (from the Kentucky Exposition Center to Sojourn Community Church)
•1. STARTING AT The Kentucky Fair & Exposition Center 937 Phillips Ln, Louisville, KY 40209 – (502) 367-5000
•2. Head northeast on Phillips Ln toward Freedom Way – About 1 min (0.6 mi)
•3. Turn left at KY-61/Preston Hwy, Continue to follow KY-61 – About 4 mins (1.6 mi)
•4. Continue on S Shelby St – About 2 mins (0.9 mi)
•5. Turn right at Goss Ave/KY-864 (466 ft)
•6. Turn left at KY-864/Logan St – About 1 min (0.2 mi)
•7. Turn right at E Oak St (0.1 mi)
•8. Turn left at Swan St (377 ft)
•9. Turn left at Mary St – Destination will be on the left (394 ft)
•10. END AT 930 Mary St, Louisville, KY 40204
We are only a few days away from our B21 Panel at the Southern Baptist Convention in Louisville. The buzz around the recent Great Commission Resurgence Declaration released by Dr. Danny Akin and Dr. Johnny Hunt is sure to be a hot topic at this year’s convention.
The event Baptist21 and Sojourn Community Church will be hosting is on Tuesday, June 23rd from 11:45 – 1:45. There will be a panel consisting of Dr. Danny Akin (SEBTS President), Dr. Ed Stetzer (President, Lifeway Research), Dr. Albert Mohler (SBTS President), Daniel Montgomery (Pastor, Sojourn Community Church), Dr. Mark Dever (Pastor, Capital Hill Baptist Church), and Dr. David Platt (Pastor, The Church at Brook Hills).
At this event, each panelist will be given a topic to speak on for a period of time regarding the SBC. Following this time there will be a Question and Answer time consisting of YOUR questions. We want you to submit the questions that you would like to have answered from one of our panelists. For the next few days we will be taking questions and compiling them. We will then narrow down the best five to seven questions asked and we will proceed with those questions at the B21 Panel. Here are two ways to submit your question:
All questions will be compiled and the B21 guys will precede with choosing the best questions for the panel. Thanks again for your continued involvement in the SBC and we look forward to reading your questions.
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