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JD Greear COVID Nazi

JD Greear Comes Out As Functionally Egalitarian

JD Greear was the liberal Southern Baptist President who served from 2018 to 2021. He was the leader during the height of the convention’s most overt woke moments, even partaking himself. Yesterday, Evangelical Dark Web reported that the Southern Baptist Convention was setting up a race narrative to defend the resurgence of women pastors in the denomination.

Greear wrote and article titled, “A Time to Come Together: The Unintended Effects of the Law Amendment” in opposition to enshrining male eldership beliefs in the SBC constitution. In it, JD Greear sees himself as participating in an Acts 15 moment.

In Acts 15, the church was at a crisis point as they tried to figure out what gospel unity looked like among churches that disagreed in some secondary matters. And they appointed a group to come up with a solution that seemed good to them and the Holy Spirit. They recognized that the unity of the church was a serious matter, and they wanted to take time to get it right. 

And so, on the Tuesday of the New Orleans Convention, I stood with several former SBC Presidents (James Merritt, Bryant Wright, Steve Gaines, Fred Luter, and Ed Litton) to call for our own Acts 15 moment, as the future of our cooperative mission depends on what we do here. We want to be doctrinally faithful, but we don’t want to change the basis of our cooperation that has been our genius for over a century.

However, JD Greear is actually betraying the very premise of the Baptist Faith and Message 2000. He disclaims his opposition to the Mike Law Amendment on procedural grounds, not theological grounds.

I want to be clear: I don’t oppose this amendment for theological reasons, but constitutional ones. Advocates of the amendment have expressed a desire to see support of complementarianism clarified and strengthened in our Convention, and I support that. This is the wrong mechanism for that.

I don’t oppose this amendment because I have any desire to see the influence of complementarianism weakened in our Convention, nor am I demurring on the strength of the biblical case for complementarianism. I share the same convictions as those who authored the amendment—I believe that there are only two offices in the church, (1) pastors (also called ‘elders’ or ‘overseers’) and (2) deacons. I believe that God has reserved the role of pastor/elder/overseer for men, an application of the principle of male headship he wove into creation. At The Summit Church, while we celebrate many women in our leadership, we have no female pastors and no female elders. I believe complementarianism is essential to Baptist faith and practice, and am grateful our Baptist Faith and Message makes that clear.

I do oppose this amendment because it binds the hands of the Credentials Committee from differentiating between those churches who have committed (to use Al Mohler’s words) a “grievous error” (in this case, rejecting complementarianism) and those who I believe simply have a nomenclature problem. Since the Conservative Resurgence, we have sought to be united on primary things (e.g. salvation by faith alone, the bodily resurrection of Jesus, the inerrancy of the Bible, etc.) and secondary things also (e.g. complementarianism, believer’s baptism, regenerate church membership, etc.). This amendment, however, makes conformity on a tertiary thing (right nomenclature of an office) a standard for fellowship. [Emphasis added]

JD Greear omits that the BFM2000 clearly draws a line in the sand on the female pastor debate, thus making it a “secondary” issue worth enforcing. After all, the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship was formed in opposition to patriarchy in the SBC.

Here’s why this might have unintended effects: With this amendment, if a church is brought to the Credentials Committee that has any woman on staff, who is a “pastor of any kind,” such as a woman who oversees their children’s ministry or website development, the Constitution mandates that the committee recommend disfellowship. They are, by Constitutional declaration, “not in friendly cooperation.” No exceptions. Even if we discern they are, indeed, complementarian, and this is merely inaccurate titling of someone’s staff position. 

Here lies the problem JD Greear actually has with the Mike Law Amendment. It exposes the scam in the SBC. Currently, the Southern Baptist Convention allows female pastors to persist in function and sometimes title so long as they are not the senior pastor. Several SBC churches have female pastors in function. For instance a female youth minister is functioning as a pastor even without the title. This is the scam at many liberal SBC churches. In May we exposed Brentwood Baptist Church for this scam. JD Greear is upset about the scam being exposed and a constitutional provision that would resolve it.

Proponents of this amendment have said it would be tragic to compromise on complementarianism. I agree. But it would be equally tragic—and it seems far more likely in our given moment—to fail to celebrate or even recognize the gifting and calling of more than half the members of our churches. 

We can and should do both—guard our doctrine and set up our sisters to thrive. 

And that’s why we need to take our Acts 15 moment, as our African American brothers and sisters are urging us—to slow things down and ask for wisdom, allowing the Holy Spirit to find a solution that “seems good to us and the Holy Spirit,”a solution that will lead to both doctrinal faithfulness and missional flourishing in our churches. 

JD Greear ends with the race narrative. Although JD Greear says that he is convictionally complementarian, his actions betray his convictions as he has counted the costs of these convictions and decided they aren’t worth being called racist.

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