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Controversy
The president of the 2011 Southern Baptist Pastors’ Conference defended a program he’s put together for June 12-13 in Phoenix, Ariz., saying critics who find it outside the convention’s mainstream hold too narrow a worldview. “The Kingdom of God is bigger than Southern Baptists,” said Vance Pitman, 2011 Pastors’ Conference president and pastor of Hope Baptist Church in Las Vegas, a church plant in partnership with First Baptist Church, Woodstock, Ga., and the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. “The main intent of our conference is to communicate the big picture of the Kingdom of God,” Pitman said in a telephone interview March 18. “God is alive and at work all over the world. We as the Southern Baptist Convention are one very small part of that.” The Pastors’ Conference has long been a barometer for Southern Baptist theological weather patterns and a launching pad to the SBC presidency for its leaders. Consequently, although it is not an official organization of the SBC, its direction is closely monitored. Negative reaction has included placement on the worship team of Jamar Jones, executive director of music and fine arts at the Potter’s House Church of Dallas. That is because he is on the ministerial staff of T.D. Jakes, who critics claim holds to the heresy of “modalism.” Modalism, a non-Trinitarian view that Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three different aspects, or modes, of one God rather than three distinct, co-equal and co-eternal persons, was first condemned as heresy in the fourth century but is held by some Pentecostal and Apostolic churches today. // Yeah, they’re also upset about the Calvinists speaking; namely Darrin Patrick and John Piper. I think the real rub is with the statement:  “The Kingdom of God is bigger than Southern Baptists.” Can that be? via Associated Baptist Press – SBC Pastors’ Conference slate raises ire.
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Controversy
It was supposed to be a big debate on Baptists and Calvinists.  Well, it never happened.  Now, three years later, it has all come down to blocking on Twitter… According to Examiner.com: Today marks the three year anniversary of a historical debate that was supposed to take place between Dr. Ergun Caner and Dr. James R. White on “Baptists and Calvinists.” The irony is that on this very same day, October 16th, 2009, Dr. Caner blocked Dr. White from following him on twitter. Some Christians are left asking, can’t a Southern Baptist get along with a Reformed Baptist? What’s the story behind the Caner/White conflict? As always, history tells the story. The conflict between Dr. Caner, the President of Liberty Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, VA, and the director of Alpha and Omega Ministries Dr. James R. White goes as far back as April 2006 (although perhaps to even 2005, see page 23). Dr. Caner preached a very strong anti-Calvinist sermon at Liberty that left many students (and theologians across the board) in shock. In the sermon, Caner redefined what was historically known as “hyper-Calvinism,” and introduced a host of common misrepresentations regarding historical “5-point Calvinism.” Dr. White reviewed the sermon several times on his webcast The Dividing Line (also on youtube here) to document these errors. At one point, Dr. Caner made an even more radical assertion, saying that “Calvinists are worse than Muslims.” Caner has not retracted this statement, nor will Caner publicly refer to White as a Christian. The conflict finally culminated into the planned debate: Monday, October 16th, 2006, 6pm, at the New Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. A debate on Calvinism. The debate was jointly agreed upon between James White and Tom Ascol (favoring Calvinism) and Dr. Ergun Caner and his brother Emir (critiquing Calvinism). Ironing out the details, however, was another matter. The four exchanged a series of letters regarding the topic, format, and setting of the debate. Words were exchanged between the moderator, Dr. Bret O’ Donnell, and White before things got further off the tracks: Click here to read the ‘blow by blow’ history of why this debate never happened; and how petty both sides can become… And click here to read James White’s latest shot to reignite this firestorm. Whatever will we do?  We will never know who would have won the debate!  How shall we think? Actually, I think neither won this debate.  In fact… they both lost it. (Oh great… there’s two more people who will block me on Twitter.) Todd
Today marks the three year anniversary of a historical debate that was supposed to take place between Dr. Ergun Caner and Dr. James R. White on “Baptists and Calvinists.” The irony is that on this very same day, October 16th, 2009, Dr. Caner blocked Dr. White from following him on twitter. Some Christians are left asking, can’t a Southern Baptist get along with a Reformed Baptist? What’s the story behind the Caner/White conflict? As always, history tells the story. The conflict between Dr. Caner, the President of Liberty Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, VA, and the director of Alpha and Omega Ministries Dr. James R. White goes as far back as April 2006 (although perhaps to even 2005, see page 23). Dr. Caner preached a very strong anti-Calvinist sermon at Liberty that left many students (and theologians across the board) in shock. In the sermon, Caner redefined what was historically known as “hyper-Calvinism,” and introduced a host of common misrepresentations regarding historical “5-point Calvinism.” Dr. White reviewed the sermon several times on his webcast The Dividing Line (also on youtube here) to document these errors. At one point, Dr. Caner made an even more radical assertion, saying that “Calvinists are worse than Muslims.” Caner has not retracted this statement, nor will Caner publicly refer to White as a Christian. The conflict finally culminated into the planned debate: Monday, October 16th, 2006, 6pm, at the New Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. A debate on Calvinism. The debate was jointly agreed upon between James White and Tom Ascol (favoring Calvinism) and Dr. Ergun Caner and his brother Emir (critiquing Calvinism). Ironing out the details, however, was another matter. The four exchanged a series of letters regarding the topic, format, and setting of the debate. Words were exchanged between the moderator, Dr. Bret O’ Donnell, and White before things got further off the tracks:
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