Thursday, May 31, 2007

Tony Blair on the MBC Controversy


I find some interesting parallels from British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s statements yesterday to his countrymen regarding his farewell tour of Africa to our current MBC controversy. Speaking at Lungi airport in Sierra Leone, Prime Minister Blair said:

“What I would say to cynics about Africa is just get across the balanced picture. Five years ago this country was being taken over by a gang of gangsters who were killing innocent people, raping women, despoiling the country. But today we have a situation where in three months time we will have an election. I don't say that is perfection, but I say it's…better than it was before. All I'm saying to cynics back home is if we care it might make a difference and making a difference is what politics should be about.”

If Blair were President of the Missouri Baptist Convention instead of the chief politician of America’s greatest ally, he might say:

“What I would say to cynics about the MBC is just get across the balanced picture. Seven years ago, this convention was being run by liberals who were weakening the spiritual integrity and biblical resolve of the convention. But today we have a situation where we have reclaimed the lost ground of past decades. I don’t say that is perfection, but I say it’s much better than it was before. All I’m saying to cynics across the MBC is if we care it might make a difference and making a difference is what being a Christian is about.”

Our convention is hardly perfect. But we need the balanced picture. And the balanced picture is that Roger Moran and the Missouri Baptist Laymen’s Association is no threat to the Missouri Baptist Convention. These leaders have greatly aided our convention. In fact, without Moran’s leadership, the MBC would still be in the clutches of liberals who would have taken this convention even further away from the truth’s of God’s perfect Word.

Instead of respecting Moran’s commitment, some leaders have rudely castigated him, taking the moniker of a secular newspaper and calling him a “powerbroker”. While Moran is fallible and it is understandable that some Missouri Baptists may disagree with him, the current mantra coming from a few voices is far from the Bible’s admonition to “Give…honor to whom honor is due” (Romans 13:7).

It’s strange how a British politician’s words yesterday, uttered on the other side of the world, can have such a surreal application in my mind.

But I’m hopeful that Missouri Baptists will agree, while our convention isn’t perfect, it’s a lot better than it was. I’m hopeful that Missouri Baptists will see the “balanced picture” and rebuff the newest movement that unnecessarily pits brother against brother, supposedly over who gets to “serve” on a board or commission. There is a better way. Let's find it.

7 comments:

Scott said...

Amen and AMEN! Insightful as always. It almost makes one think you sent a little bribe across the pond to the ol' chap to make such an appropriate speech.
And how right you are. The SOC is unnecessary at best, and the focus ought to be on "serving" the MBC. Thanks again for your well-reasoned post.

(Of course, then again, aren't you one of those power hogs yourself? I mean haven't you been CLC chair since, like, forever? Hmmm, maybe you have your own agenda, wanting to rewrite the bylaws so you can serve ANOTHER term with the CLC!! Sorry, I couldn't help myself)

Rod said...

Scott:
Hey, don't let the secret out! Mike Green and Bob Curtis were both CLC members before they were elected convention president. You and I know the CLC is the hub of MBC power, but did you have to tell everyone else? Can you imagine our competition once people starting flooding in to serve on the CLC and help Missouri Baptists address the moral, social and political issues of our time?

Rod said...

PS. As punishment for your leak and to demonstrate the iron-fisted, power-hungry, control-mongering leadership of pro-Project 1000 sympathizers, YOU'RE OFF THE CLC! This is your last year, buddy!

Scott said...

Rod:

I'm so sorry. Please, please, please let me have another chance. I promise I'll do better next time. I want to be a power monger, too. Please.

Oh, wait. I already submitted my resignation, didn't I? Oh, well, never mind. I'll just have to find some other way to dominate the weak minded.

PS to you, too!

PS seriously, to anyone else out there reading this: The CLC is one of the most significant ministries in the MBC, and Rodney deserves a huge pat on the back for the leadership he has provided. God has used him to bring this ministry out of the shadows and have real impact on issues like gambling, cloning, etc. No power mongering here; just dedicated, time consuming, sacrificial service. Thanks, Rod.

Tim A. Blankenship said...

Rod,
I appreciate you article. The SOC should be dead in the water, floating downstream, and into oblivion. They are not needed.
Much gratitude to Roger Moran for his work and sacrifice he has given.
I have never been so disappointed in people as I have been of some of those who were leading the SOC. I can only pray they will open their eyes and their hearts and see the foolishness of these efforts and the division they are causing.
God bless you in your work.
Tim A. Blankenship

Scott said...

Tim,
And all God's people said, AMEN!

Jim Shaver said...

The SOC is dead because they quickly became a "Power-Team" instead of a grassroots movement.

Their meeting in St. Louis was the first bullet fired into their own brain and that occurred when they did not allow any questions or rebuttals from the floor.

Their lack of communication with all the pastors of the state since that meeting has finished them.

We do not need another set of "faces" in the leadership of the MBC. What we need is radical restructuring that is planned and not forced by lack of interest and financial support by MBC Churches.

I don't care who leads the MBC as long as they CHANGE IT and make it RELEVANT.