Thursday, February 09, 2006

For years now, the presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention has been "decided" at First Baptist Jacksonville's annual Pastor's Conference. And infact, the presidency has gone uncontested since the early 90s. Many are aware that this year, Dr. Jerry Vines called for Dr. Johnny Hunt to serve the position. Certainly, I don't agree with polity issues surrounding the method of electing our president, yet right now, there is something that is bothering me even more. At the 2005 SBC Pastor's Conference, Johnny Hunt preached a sermon on the doctrine of election that received much applause from the viewing audience, but garnered plenty of criticism from others. Below are several alarming statements Dr. Hunt made during his discourse: (emphasis is mine)

“By the way, aren’t you grateful, that there’s hope? Listen to me carefully, it's important we understand this Convention. There’s hope for everyone in Jesus. Everyone. Everyone. Not a select group. Everyone. Someone says, ‘Pastor you believe that you’re the elect?’ I sure am. Everybody that gets in is the elect; and He’s elected all of us. I believe everyone can be saved. Anyone can come to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Someone said, 'I don’t think you ought to preach like that.' Well, I just hope no one gets saved that’s not supposed to. I’m serious. We better get away from that and get back to the Book and invite everyone to come to Christ! Just preach it! Invite everybody! Tell everyone!”

While I admire Dr. Hunt's passion to share Christ, there are obviously several serious errors in the above declaration. And I'm not arguing that we need a Reformed president, however, Dr. Hunt's sermon (although I do not believe it was on purpose) went far beyond Arminianism and advocated Universalism. I'm quite certain if you sat down with Dr. Hunt and further delved into his thoughts, you would find that he isn't a Universalist or Pelagian, and that he really loves Jesus. Yet his words cause me great concern. Dr. Hunt chose to use one of his biggest platforms last year to utter some disturbing and downright heretical comments. Whether he intended to convey what he did, or not, I'm still left with a lot of questions as I consider the fact that he will probably be President Hunt this time next year.
posted by Christie