Todd-I'm interested in how you made the move from a Southern Baptist background to a non denominational church. I've been attending a Southern Baptist Church for some time and I have found the history of the denomination troubling, and also their emphasis on some points of doctrine (adult baptism) at the expense of others-i.e a lack of Communion on a consistent basis. I also know that you appear to be a Calvinist, and there is some resistance to that in the Southern Baptist denomination. The last few years I have found that these issues are more important to me. I really found Christ at COS 24 years ago, and have found that the non denomination model has a different emphasis, at least in my experience, that is founded on the centrality of Christ and the word-as opposed to the importance of the denomination.
Jerry,I like the idea of denominations because when they are working well they provide a structure of accountability for churches. For instance, I like the fact that the PCA (and other denoms) has a book of church order. I like the fact that some Presbyterian denoms insist upon subscription to the Westminster Confession of Faith. I like that fact that the PCA insists that those who pastor their churches hold a degree from seminary. That's just a few examples of what I think are strengths of denominations.The Southern Baptist Convention is not a true denomination because the churches are autonomous. The SBC is technically an association of autonomous church that agree to cooperate toward particular ends.It was strange being Reformed and Southern Baptist. At least I thought it was strange until I discovered the growing number of those within the SBC who were reformed. It is also a fact that the SBC was founded by reformed theologians. The first SBC statement of faith, the Abstract of Principles is a reformed baptist statement of faith.I embraced the reformed understanding of God's sovereignty in salvation because I was mugged by the Bible. I could no longer deny what the Bible was clearly saying. Anyway, it was much like a conversion experience. My whole world-view changed. It was a beautiful thing.That said, Calvinism has been very controversial within the SBC which is unfortunate. Some years after the founding the SBC began being influenced by Wesleyanism and the anti-intellectualism of the holiness movement.
Thanks Todd, as I've spent time "looking under the hood" of my faith I find myself more in the reformed camp. There seems to be more biblical consistency there. I appreciate you taking the time to comment.
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