ARCHIVE: The Future of the Southern Baptist Convention


The paper below was written to complete a course requirement at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. The Spring 2001 course title was “The Doctrine of the Church.” The professor was Paige Patterson.

I was twenty-five years old.

The 15-million member Southern Baptist Convention, having just emerged victorious in the now famous ‘Battle for the Bible,’ is boldly pushing forward with reinvigorated and revitalized mission thrust to take the ‘more certain word’ (2 Pet 1:19) to the nations in an unprecedented strategy of indigenous church-planting and missionary zeal. As her armies now march forward, their backs are still warmed by the soft glow of the smoldering coals of camp-fire controversy and strife, which though regrettably necessary has removed the dross of ‘liberalism’ and ‘neo-orthodoxy’ from the holy armor now adorned in exuberant triumph. Before they journey too far, it seems appropriate for those young soldiers yet unmarked by the scars of ‘holy war’ to ask themselves whether or not the smoldering coals of yesterday will rage again, lest in their own crusade they be summoned home to find the territories conquered by their forefathers reclaimed by interlopers and destroyed. This question is as troubling as it is rewarding. The wisdom to be gained by critical analysis of the strategies of yesterday’s battles provides both insight and warning for battles that lay (sic) ahead. The past does indeed shape the future, and this paper is more an exercise in preparation than anything.

To read the rest of the paper click below:

Image (135)

To read Patterson’s hand-written comments on the cover and back page, click below:

Image (134)





One thought on “ARCHIVE: The Future of the Southern Baptist Convention

  1. A 98% grade. Seems as though the instructor was quite taken by the author’s writing acumen.

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