Monday, June 12, 2006
CESSATIONISM VS. CONTINUALISM & THE SBC PRESIDENCY
My Bible study class just finished 1 Corinthians 14. I posted the notes here yesterday. As we discussed the issue of speaking in tongues, I explained cessationsim, the idea that the "sign gifts" ceased with the death of the apostles, and continualism, the idea that all of the gifts are present today as they were in the early church.
I told the class I thought that Baptists were largely "practical cessationists", that is, they may say they believe in the existence of the sign gifts, but they live and practice as if they did not.
One of the candidates for SBC president, Jerry Sutton, wants to take us closer into full cessationism, it seems. Sutton wants to write the policy of the mission board, outlawing the practice of the "private prayer language", into the Baptist Faith and Message.
Although this would not affect the rank and file to a great degree, since most laymen ignore the BF&M completely, but it would affect seminary professors and staff members of the convention, who must sign off on the BF&M to keep their jobs.
Since most of the messengers from my church are from Southwestern Seminary, don't look for a lot of votes for Sutton from Travis Avenue Baptist Church.