DISMANTLING THE CONSERVATIVE RESURGENCE: THE SCORCHED EARTH OF THE SBC AFTER MLK /#METOO COLLIDE
RUSSELL MOORE AND ALBERT MOHLER CAUGHT IN THE CROSSFIRE OF THEIR OWN RACIAL AND #METOO HYPOCRISY.
By Rev Thomas Littleton 5/31/2019
The ERLC of Russell Moore has been a constant source of tireless activism to redefine what it means to be Southern Baptist and Christian . Along with Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) of Albert Mohler and their broader joint efforts as part of The Gospel Coalition these men and their entities have firebombed the SBC with a relentless napalm of victims/narratives to engender inner conflict with it’s racial history, treatment of gays and women and it’s multitude of asserted gospel witness lapses in voting pro family and supporting President Donald Trump. However the constant role playing dressup to dress down and conflict Baptist souls has left these two men and others in their loop in a good ole fashion Southern quandray. How do they satisfy the need for addressing abuse and promoting women’s empowerment while embracing and promoting racial division in the name of MLK’s legacy as further revelations of his abuses unfold?
Can Moore address the needs of abused women in the SBC while promoting the legacy of an FBI alleged abuser? Can Mohler “Rid the SBC and SBTS of the Stain of Racism” and defend them against his protege’ Russell Moore’s egalitarian movement while the needs of racial minorities and gender minorities collide? Whose justice now prevails?
LIKE THE WILEY TACTICS OF TWO CIRCUS PERFORMERS
At the moment the focus of Moore is to provide an answer to the sexual abuse and cover up scandals exposed by the Houston Chronicle. His answer appears to be more Beth Moore in the SBC.
“The American church is facing an abuse crisis. Is your church doing all it can to be safe for survivors and safe from abuse? Churches should be a refuge for those who have experienced abuse. But, too often, survivors haven’t found the protection they deserve and the care they need from the church. Are you ready to join us in changing that?”
Meanwhile while Mohler appears to play the conservative mourning the assault on the SBCs historic views on women in ministry.
Albert MohlerVerified account @albertmohler 21h21 hours ago
“We have reached a critical moment in the Southern Baptist Convention when there are now open calls to retreat from our biblical convictions on complementarianism and embrace the very error that the SBC repudiated over 30 years ago. Honestly, I never thought I would see this day.”
REVELLING IN A RACIST PAST IN THE NAME OF GOSPEL UNITY
The Martin Luther King legacy is valued by millions around the world for what it has come to represent in the movement for racial equality. However MLK himself is a controversial figure and he was not a Southern Baptist or orthodox conservative Christian theologically. For this reason his legacy is problematic for TGC and SBC leaders basing a theologically driven social action movement on it . Nevertheless that is exactly what happened last April .
In April 2018 the MLK / 50 conference took the “racial reconciliation” efforts a bridge too far as the ERLC and TGC co-sponsored Conference accused all whites of “privilege ” and institutionalized racism in their faith . Russell Moore brazenly declared and accused white Southern Baptists of “Worshipping Jim Crow as Jesus ” and Mark Dever’s long time staffer/ TGC spokesperson Thabiti Anyabwile demanded that white Christians are “complicit with the death of King.”
“SBC CRITICAL RACE THEORY PALOOZA “
In June 2019 The Southern Baptist Convention annual meetings are scheduled to be held amid the racially charged history of Birmingham Alabama. The likelihood of a critical theory palooza looms large over the coming event .
(Writers NOTE :Living in Birmingham and having grown up in the city during the 1960s, the great racial progress of our city has been extraordinary and much of it has been driven by Christian love and Gospel truth without the aid and often in spite of white preachers with glaringly obvious intentions to grandstand. The real progress of a new generation growing up beyond racial conflict and mostly ignoring national movements like BLM to go on about their daily lives – is all but ignored. Will the SBC and Russell Moore/ Albert Mohler come to our city and use racial division to its/ their own political gain and then leave -on to the next stop on the tour ? We will know in less than two weeks .)
The 2018 embrace of the MLK legacy by these SBC leaders was problematic on many fronts. Laced with critical race theory and accusation, it was certainly not driven by a spirit of Christian unity but instead by division and talk of reparations which continue more than a year later .
Those problems include :
MLK was not a conservative minister theologically. He doubted the Divinity of Jesus, the virgin birth, substitutionary atonement, and the second coming. Social action was equated as the Gospel . In 2014 this history was actually pointed out by The Gospel Coalition in an article by Joe Carter . But by 2018 it was completely ignored in the TGC/ERLC conference held in Memphis accusing white Christianity of institutionalized racism. For Moore/Mohler or TGC to claim adherence to and to represent leadership of orthodox Biblical Theology while marketing such contradiction is laughable but for the seriousness of the damage it inflicts.
One of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference cofounder with King was Bayard Rustin a homosexual Marxist who helped organize some of the key events of the Civil Rights Movement. Rustin was quietly folded out of leadership in the SCLC and became an advocate of gay rights . In the 1990 Rustin declared (in more raw street language) that Gay is the New Black . MLK biographies like the Oprah produced film “Selma” feature a Rustin character but do not name him in efforts to honor his role without raising controversy.
Close friend and co-founder of the SCLC with MLK Ralph Abernathy in 1989 published his biography “When the Walls Came Tumbling Down ” . In it Abernathy revealed King’s marital infidelity, stating that King had sexual relations with two women on the night of April 3, 1968 after his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech earlier that day. Talk of the details of MLK’s infidelity have continued through the years as the contents of now leaked FBI reports are discuss in detail by biographer David Garrow.
Now the conflicts over SBC /TGC /ERLC – MLK/50 movement have grown .
AJC reports that
“Martin Luther King Jr. allegedly had sexual relations with at least 40 women, from prostitutes to people within his inner circle, according to explosive new research published Thursday by David J. Garrow, one of the civil rights leader’s foremost biographers.”
“The most shocking allegation, culled from decades-old FBI files, details a 1964 incident in which King reportedly “looked on, laughed and offered advice” to a fellow preacher who was raping a woman in a hotel room.”
“Garrow recounts other allegations from formerly sealed FBI documents – including that King fathered a love child and participated in an orgy with a female gospel legend — in an eight-page essay he wrote for Standpoint, a British cultural and political magazine.”
CAN MOHLER AND MOORE SPEAK TO HIDDEN ABUSE OF WOMEN IN THE SBC FROM THE PLATFORM OF MLK/50?
Writer Laura Hollis addresses the conflict between the cause of #MeToo movement and the MLK legacy.
“So, what happens now?”
“According to Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David Garrow, FBI surveillance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the late 1950s and early 1960s (the records of which were just released) produced evidence that Dr. King had dozens of extramarital affairs, participated in sex orgies, hired prostitutes, used the most vulgar language to describe his conduct with women and even laughingly looked on while an associate allegedly raped a woman in a hotel room.”
“Will the civil rights icon be subject to the same standard that is now being applied to other towering historical figures?
“In this era of #MeToo and “Trust Women,” what would the reaction be if a group of feminist activists were to arrange a protest around the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., take sledgehammers and other blunt instruments to the statue of the man there, deface it with spray-painted sayings and hire a crane to knock it over? What would the public reaction be if local police and the National Park Service personnel were ordered to “stand down” and allow that to happen? Would pundits, gender and race scholars and Hollywood tweeters jump to the protesters’ defense? Would we hear calls for all streets and schools and parks named for Dr. King to be renamed?”
“I don’t think so. (And I would hope not.) But the deafening silence since the sordid revelations – unverified though some of them are – says plenty about the public discomfort when our heroes are revealed to be deeply flawed individuals. What does it do to their legacy? What standards are we holding public figures to now?”
ERLC CONFERENCE TO ADDRESS ABUSE WILL FEATURE SPEAKER ENDORSED BY BILL CLINTON .
The ERLC ” Caring Well Conference” will not only feature Russell and Beth Moore but also includes the co-founder of the International Justice Mission Gary Haugen. His controversial work and most recent book are endorsed by none other than famed abuser of women ,former President Bill Clinton .
“Throughout my life I’ve seen firsthand that while talent, ambition, and hard work are distributed equally among all people around the world, many face challenges each day simply surviving. The Locust Effect is a compelling reminder that if we are to create a 21st Century of shared prosperity, we cannot turn a blind eye to the violence that threatens our common humanity.”
Former U.S. President
It seems that Moore and Mohler are either blind to such contradictions and the hypocrisy betrayed by them or they expect Christians to be ignorant enough not to notice.
ERLC /RUSSELL MOORE APPEAR TO ASSUME MORE BETH MOORE WILL SOLVE ABUSE PROBLEMS IN THE SBC
Beth Moore is struggling to find her way in the egalitarian vs complementarian SBC stand off . She retracted a tweet espousing an egalitarian view as being more part of the historic SBC view of women in ministry citing the former SBTS head Roy Honeycutt who Albert Mohler replaced as part of the “Conservative Resurgence” in the Southern Baptist.
Beth Moore seems lost in the Twitter fray and unaware that she and her work with Russell Moore and the ERLC are caught in the ” SBC Minutia” and hair splitting over the creation of a Hindu new age “Manusha” icon of Beth for “Natyashastra Theatrics and Dramaturgy” in the SBC. Beth Moore going full on egalitarian as she tweets beyond her SBC handlers controls is proving very problematic for her and for Moore and Mohler.
The twitter apology
Beth MooreVerified account @BethMooreLPM 19h19 hours ago
Replying to @albertmohler
Al, contra @Tomascol, I was not promoting Roy Honeycutt nor was I aligning myself with him. I know very little about him. I was making the point in a Twitter conversation that Southern Baptists have historically held differing views regarding women & ministry. I am not the enemy.
(NOTE – Women and children are most protected from abuse when Leaders are living out Christian /biblical principle and ethics at every level of life from family/ church / marketplace / and denominational leadership . The issues of abuse are addressed by accountability and godly obedience to Scripture. Political activism and posturing and advocating for egalitarian feminist driven progressive policy such as are currently taking place and illustrated in the this report are useless to prevent or address abuse of any kind . Those who think to do so while embracing the endorsements, funding and legacies of abusers or hiding the abuses of fellow leaders have no moral ground from which to speak to the concerns.)
NAVIGATING YOUR OWN HYPOCRISY
However Russell Moore and Albert Mohler continue to play off each other in public as their plans unfold -the reality they face is that driving your goals with third party wildcards like feminista champion Beth Moore or gays like Sam Allberry or Nate Collins (both activist for gay rights in the SBC) is challenging at best. Tagging the legacy of a civil rights icon with swirling abuse controversies and very different theological foundations than your own is especially problematic when your movements carefully crafted public image is one of theological orthodoxy. Moore and Mohler often appear to be wanting it both ways – to be standard bearers of conservative Christianity while being agents of change -departing from orthodoxy and into the “brave commons” at the intersection of social justice for women, minorities , LGBT, immigrants (especially Muslim refugees) victims of poverty , trafficking , and persecution -all under the heading of ” a Gospel issue”.
Perhaps what has really changed is very little except that the real agents of it are forced into the open by glaring contradictions of their own making. It is possible the words of the ERLC quest speaker from the International Justice Mission with a reported $52 million dollar a year budget declares the social gospel engagement of Moore and Mohler far better than they do themselves. He,unlike these “conservative “SBC agents has less to hide when it comes to social justice.
“Gary Haugen is an engaged Christian. He is a member of the Anglican Church in North America, and spoke at their General Convention in 2014. Since founding International Justice Mission in 1997, he has described witnessing a “sea change” within the “Christian community that was [once] largely disengaged from the struggle for justice in the world,” but now views care for victims of injustice as a significant issue in faith”.
(NOTE -IJM has drawn criticism of its own through the years. https://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Employee-Review-International-Justice-Mission-RVW9795262.htm )
Haguen is a good fit for Moore’s ERLC but like Moore himself is a questionable fit for Southern Baptists. But with Tim Keller and both Bill and Hillary Clinton’s endorsement and the money of Google, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Faith Based Partnership funding behind the Justice efforts -he looks to fit right in with where Albert Mohler and Russell Moore seem determined to take the Southern Baptist Convention – whether Baptists like it or not.
The age old social gospel is the new replacement for the Great Commission in the SBC. Contradictions and Hypocrisy be darned – being a Christian in the Brave New World is about following the self appointed thought leaders telling you what your conscience should be dictating. They intend to tell you where you should invest your life, money, calling and family in the cause for justice. And are shameless in affirming themselves and their companions WORTHY as the arbiters of the future of your faith.
FIREBOMBING FELLOW BAPTIST
Will the firebombing of “white guilt ” and critical race/ gender /queer/ victim theory ever cease? Will Moore and Mohler rediscover the True calling of the church? Can Southern Baptists ever emerge from the bunkers of their private faith and enter the public square and engage the marketplace with true Gospel mission void of false “justice” laced with the poison of progressive Cultural Marxism ?Or will Southern Baptists have to simply abandon the SBC to the whims and wiles of agents of change driven by questionable allies and even more questionable funding and set on dismantling and redefining the faith of generations of believers for their own benefit?
Never mind the “The Priesthood of (every) Believer “
Perhaps Baptists and others under TGC influence should read again – and discover who alone is Worthy to lead the souls of HIS saints and be reminded of the true Great Commission.
“4 John, to the seven churches which are in Asia:
Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth.
To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, 6 and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
Worthy Is the Lamb
“8 Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9 And they sang a new song, saying:
“You are worthy to take the scroll,
And to open its seals;
For You were slain,
And have redeemed us to God by Your blood
Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made [d]us kings[e] and priests to our God;
And [f]we shall reign on the earth.”
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