Terrorism, Middle East, sexual integrity of ministers topics of SBC resolutions
June 21 2002 by Bill Neal , Christian Index

Terrorism, Middle East, sexual integrity of ministers topics of SBC resolutions | Friday, June 21, 2002

Friday, June 21, 2002

Terrorism, Middle East, sexual integrity of ministers topics of SBC resolutions

By Bill Neal Christian Index

ST. LOUIS--Resolutions adopted by the Southern Baptist Convention during

their June 11-12 annual meeting spoke to contemporary issues such as the

war on terrorism, peace in the Middle East, the sexual integrity of

ministers and opposition to partial-birth abortion.

Most of the adopted resolutions were reported out from the convention's

resolutions committee, chaired by Frank Harber, pastor of First Baptist

Church in Colleyville, Texas. The committee had not proposed a

resolution on partial-birth abortion, however, since the convention

spoke on that issue previously.

But Rick Reeder, a messenger from Princeton, Ky., made a motion from the

floor that the convention go on record this year encouraging the

president and congress to make the ban on partial-birth abortion a high

priority. He noted that a presidential veto was unlikely from George

Bush, making the passage of such legislation timely.

A two-thirds majority was required for consideration of resolutions

proposed directly from the floor outside the committeeproces - a rarity

at SBC meetings - but this one easily passed with an overwhelmingly

affirmative vote.

The resolution on terrorism states that Southern Baptists

"wholeheartedly support the actions of the United States government, its

intelligence agencies and its military in the just war against the

terrorist networks."

Meanwhile, a related resolution supports continuing prayer for peace in

the Middle East. Specifically, it supports the right of Israel to exist

as a sovereign state, denounces revenge and holds Israel accountable to

the same standards of national righteousness as any other nation. It

calls on the Palestinian people to repudiate terrorism and encourages

both the Israeli and Palestinian people to promote genuine religious

liberty and peace between themselves and their neighbors.

All spiritual leaders are urged to hold one another accountable to the

highest standards of Christian moral practice, according to another

resolution. It urges all religious bodies and local churches to rid

their ranks of predatory ministers and discipline those guilty of any

sexual abuse.

The convention went on record as being unable to commend the Today's New

International Version of the Bible, published recently by Zondervan. The

resolution says the TNIV "has gone beyond acceptable translation

standards" by altering "the meaning of hundreds of verses, most

significantly by erasing gender-specific details that appear in the

original language."

The resolution requests agencies, boards and publishing arms of the SBC

to refrain from using this translation. An amendment passed from the

floor specifically directed LifeWay Christian Resources not to carry the

TNIV in its book stores, something President Jimmy Draper already had


A resolution concerning the sufficiency of Scripture in a therapeutic

culture states: "We affirm that there arereal conditions that warrant

legitimate medical treatment, but we reject the assumptions of the

therapeutic culture that offer a pharmacological solution for every

human problem. ... We call on Southern Baptists to reclaim practical

biblical wisdom, Christ-centered counseling and the restorative ministry

of the care and cure of souls."

The high vacancy rate of judges in the federal system was addressed in a

resolution calling on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to give a fair

hearing and timely decisions on nominees presented by the president. The

resolution "recognizes that a judicial vacancy crisis exists," noting a

nearly 20 percent vacancy rate on the U.S. court of appeals.

Local security personnel in St. Louis were commended in one resolution

for the way they handled potentially disruptive demonstrators at the

convention, most notably members of Soulforce, who were protesting

Southern Baptist teachings against homosexuality. A number

of those demonstrators were arrested, but no violent incidents occurred.

The martyrdom of New Tribes missionary Martin Burnham was addressed in a

resolution that "grieved the loss of our brother in Christ" and extended

deepest sympathies for his widow, Gracia, their children and family.

Southern Baptists were encouraged to redouble their commitment to pray

for Southern Baptist missionaries "who daily offer their lives in

service to God and his Son, Jesus Christ."

Messengers rejected a motion from the floor to consider an additional

resolution in condemnation of Freemasonry as an organization opposed to

Christianity. The resolutions committee said this subject had been

addressed previously and the wording of the proposed resolution was


On the first day of the convention, messengers approved revisions to the

procedures used by the resolutions committee. In the future, resolutions

must be submitted no later than 15 days prior to the annual meeting. The

new procedures will broaden the usually narrow time frame former

resolutions committees had to receive, consider and report resolutions

back to messengers.

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6/21/2002 12:00:00 AM by Bill Neal , Christian Index | with 0 comments
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