The High Cost Of Taking A Stand In The South Carolina Baptist State Convention

When the Southern Baptist Convention met in N.C.a couple of years ago I was sickened by the tactics of men like Johnny Hunt who nominated Pastors for Presidentof the Southern Baptist convention who held a low view of the Cooperative Program.I was delighted that Frank Page was elected as President.

In November of that year Donald Wilton,in spite of the conservative caucus,was elected President of the South Carolina Baptist State Convention.That was a real victory for our State Convention.

The following year the “conservative,political caucus anointed Tom Tucker to be the next President of the S.C.State Convention.Tom is my friend and has been for several years.But because I do not trust some men’s integrity in the conservative caucus and because of Calvary’s low per-centage giving to the CP,I,of my own accord,decided to back Mike Moody for President.I did not personally know Mike,but it was obvious that his church had a consistent record of CP giving.Both Mike and Tom are men of integrity and honesty.

When I decided to vote for Mike Moody,I was told by many men in high places that because of the conservative caucus,Tom was unbeatable.This did not deter me,even though I agreed with these men.But it was my strong conviction that I needed to take steps that would encourage S.C.Baptists to elect a man whose church had a good record of CP giving.

I wrote letters to the Baptist Courier and State News papers stating the facts about each church that these good men represented.I did this of my own volition.I did this not expecting or accepting any rewards from anybody.I was not then and am not now interested in “climbing”the denominational ladder.Far too many men in our State,desperate to serve on a committee have become “girly men” and I have no desire to do likewise.

I have been told that due to my feeble efforts of writing letters about the Nov.election,I was used to steer the SC Baptist Convention in the right direction.I hope thats true and if it is I am deeply humbled by that statement.

I would do the same thing again.Men who I thought were my friends will not speak to me.Quite honestly,I wear that as a badge of honor.

When I came back from the State convention last Nov.I led our church to increase our CP gifts from 5%to 10%.Some churches that read my letters increased their giving to the CP.

I am deeply saddened that one year later men like Marshall Fagg,Jim Austin,and Frank Page are making a mockery of the CP by caving in to the emergent churches who think that the CP Is a joke.we are told that Southern Baptists pastors need time to learn how wonderful the CP is and in the mean time we can learn from them Arminian tacticts on how to trick people down the church aisle. and get them to say the “magic prayer”and then head for the Baptisimal tail gate party.Now if you dare to disagree,with this heresey then you are not “speaking the truth in love”In my humble,but correct opinion,these men are thinking about a “warm,fuzzy wuzzy,Joel Osteen kind of love.”Yes,we do need to speak the truth in love,but the truth can be and often is devisive.

To coin a phrase from Frank Page,”For Christ’s sake men,stop it.” Support the CP and allow those who have no desire to do likewise depart in peace.

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6 Comments on “The High Cost Of Taking A Stand In The South Carolina Baptist State Convention”

  1. Quinn Hooks Says:

    I thought you were having “lunch with wunch” though you do get “more with poore”!

  2. Randy Mellichamp Says:

    I must admit that I am a bit confused by the comments on this situation. Let me clarify. I agree with each statement you have made on your site about the importance of the CP. It is a God given blessing and the success of the CP compared to the failure of other denominations efforts to duplicate it, shows the need for it, the blessing of God upon it, and how it can continue to be a driving force in spreading the kingdom of God. However, I have to be concerned with supporting any one man because his church is a consistent CP giver.

    I was also at the state meeting last year. I am in the same area as Tom Tucker. While he and I may not agree on methodlogy, we agree completely on the message and that it cannot be compromised. However, Tom was dead in the water before one vote was cast. How do I get this knowledge? The nomination speech given by Randall Langston hung Tom out.

    Now, I have noting against Mike Moody. I personally do not know the man. I did not vote for him because I know Tom Tucker and know his ministry in Rock Hill. I do not know Randall Langston. I only know what I have seen in the Courier and in the state meetings. But I do know that the whole issue was a moot point for Tom when Randall read their percentage of CP giving.

    I believe that we missed a good opportunity to see what Tom Tucker could do this past year. Again, THIS IS NOT A PERSONAL SLAP AT ANY MAN OR THE CURRENT SCBC PRESIDENT. I don’t want to be painted with this brush. But I think that we as a state will miss some great Godly personalitlies if the CP is our litmus test of leadership. Conversly, we may allow some men into state leadership that don’t need to be there if all we do is focus on the CP.

    I think that the CP should be a good indicator, but maybe we should give a little more emphasis on the cadidate through current avenues before the meeting. Maybe having a special Courier to highlight the candidates? I must admit, I know very little about the current candidates (Quinn Hooks, Richard Porter, etc.). If we want to get the word out about these men, then we need to take full advantage of the available resources and get the word to the men and women of God that will be attending this meeting.

    But please look at the whole man, not just what his church is giving. It could be that he is pushing for more CP giving and the church has blocked him at every point. That does happen at times.

    Sorry for the long post, but this has been a issue with me for some time. Thanks for the oportunity to discuss this.

  3. Thanks Randy for your comments and insight.

  4. Quinn Hooks Says:

    Well, Randy,
    I am not hard to find. Just click Ghost Recon on Bill’s links. You can click on About Me to learn more about me as well as the other posts and links.
    You do make a valid point that it is difficult to get to know the candidates in a 3 minutes presentation. I feel that is why blogs will increase in importance in years to come. Do you have any ideas that would help in this process?
    BTW, it’s Randall Jones who nominated Tom last year. He had recently retired from Langston Baptist Church in Conway, SC when he nominated Tom.

  5. Quinn Hooks Says:

    “But please look at the whole man, not just what his church is giving. It could be that he is pushing for more CP giving and the church has blocked him at every point. That does happen at times.”

    Good point, that happened to me at my last church! I have friends that had the same thing happen to them.

  6. Randy Mellichamp Says:

    Thanks, Quinn for the website. Dr. Poore sent the link to me and I’ve checked it out already.

    I feel that blogs can only help with those who take the time to read them and research them. That may not be available to many of our older members of the convention. I still hold that there should be some influence put on the Baptist Courier to have a “convention sendoff” issue. This could include the resolutions that have already been issued (the time frame should be enough to issue those for consideration), a bio on each candidate and a brief description of what each position is about. I know that many would think that this could be perceived as pushing one person over the other. So maybe we could have some other information through the associations.

    South Carolina has always favored a grass roots movement. This would be the best way to get out the information. I just feel that there is so much more to know about the candidates that we must consider. We need to provide some way as a convention in ensuring that each candidate can be shared with the members of it. The positions are too important and the inlfuence of these men are too great to leave to what we hear and possibly know.

    I know a little on some of the candidates (went to school with Hans), but am learning more and more about other guys as the convention becomes a little bigger and a little more personal to me as I grow with it.


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