Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Fundamental Baptist problems

In the #MeToo era a good bit of sexual allegation appears more as gobbledygook seeking some certain civic, social, and/or political advantage. This obscures the darker problems, such as the very real problem of sexual assault and sexual abuse in some fundamental circles that exalt pastoral authority to God-like proportions. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram has a new series dealing with the topic.[i]
Since “independent Baptist” represents a broad class of Baptists who are “independent” – often unaffiliated (with any body beyond the local church) – these allegations and problems should not be projected on to all independent Baptists (or all Baptists for that matter).[ii] Be aware such renegades may hide, or try to hide, in any church. Nevertheless, this is especially problematic in churches where a leaders or a few leaders are given an inordinate amount of authority.[iii]

[i] “The Fort Worth Star-Telegram interviewed more than 200 members, ex-members and clergy and reviewed hundreds of documents during its eight-month investigation into sexual abuse at independent fundamental Baptist churches.” A link to the series can also be found on the newspaper’s website HERE. If you don’t have a subscription you probably won’t be able to read all five articles linked, but may be able to find some of them reposted elsewhere where you can read them. For example, Hundreds of sex abuse allegations... at Pulpit and Pen, and ‘It’s ruined me.’ Former independent fundamental Baptists... at Black Christian News Network One.
[ii] I have written briefly and randomly about independent Baptists, for example, HERE, HERE, and HERE.
[iii] Beware of the “Touch not God’s anointed” mentality. Do not separate the children from their parents for worship or Bible study. Let all worship together. Let pastors when visiting ladies of the church be accompanied by their wives. All the falderal that so many churches add and attach to expand the simple church gathering not only creates a biblical “unorthopraxy” – it sets up new areas of “ministry” where duplicitous dealers can swoop in and take their prey.

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