Letters to the EditorOct. 6, 2000
Church's differences must be worked out, not dismissed
In response to Wednesday's column by John Hall regarding strife between Baptists nationwide: While I must concur that strife within the church is troublesome, I would argue that it cannot simply be swept underneath the carpet in favor of a feigned unity. Theological discrepancies oughtnot deter the church from its missions, but theyshould divide it. Difference makes the church thrive. That many Christians interpret the Bible differently only strengthens the church, so long as each Christian is seeking God's guidance. Different Christians can be on different missions from the same God.
A reallocation of funds by the Baptist General Convention of Texas recommends that Texas Baptists view their mission as different from Southern Baptists. Love is not precluded by incongruent ideas. Yes, there is one body, but there are also many parts. 'Now God has placedeach partin the body just as he desired. But if all were one part, where would the body be?' Mutual concern must always be present, but it has become apparent that the BGCT and the Southern Baptist Convention are no longer the same parts of the body.
The problems arising from these differences cannot be solved by ignoring the differences. Perhaps the decisive action of the BGCT can bring some closure to this painful time in our Baptist heritage.
Ever since our daughter started at Baylor this fall, we have been reading The Lariat on a regular basis. We really enjoy keeping up with the news from Baylor and find the reporting fairly balanced and objective -- except for one area of news. This concerns the pieces we read relating to the ongoing differences between the SBC and BGCT. In these pieces, we read a very lopsided viewpoint and wish you could do a better job of reporting from both sides of the issue. We are sure there are many students at Baylor who do not necessarily agree with president emeritus Dr. Herbert H. Reynolds or the BGCT.
From Wednesday's Lariat, here is an example:
'The SBC is elevating the statements made in the 'Baptist Faith and Message' to the point of inerrancy, putting its message above the scripture of Jesus Christ, Reynolds said. This issue of 'creedalism' goes against Baptist tradition, he said.'
I am sure he did say this; however, a little research into the facts would reveal this is a completely false statement. The SBC 'Baptist Faith and Message' is not claimed to be inerrant by the SBC . . . the Bible is! Why can't the reporting bring this to light?
Maybe you could interview some people from the SBC, such as Dr. Richard Land, and present the other side of the issue for your readers. After examining the evidence and facts of the debate, we have concluded the BGCT is in error, and will leave the association unless something changes. There are many Southern Baptist churches in this state poised to do the same. Yes, Reynolds and others have made the money sound so good for Baylor and the other two schools, but your newspaper needs to look at the other side of the coin.
Don and Cindy Zumstein