Tongue in cheek…IMB

January 23, 2006

Read this post first…

For the past 3 years, I have been on staff at a Southern Baptist Church.   The International Mission Board (IMB) is the organization that manages all the SBC missions.  In the blogsphere and in many Southern Baptist circles, there has been much discussion about the recommendation that the IMB is bringing this year to the delegates of the Southern Baptist Convention (for an excellent compilation of blogsphere debate see Provocations and Pantings).  I will summarize as necessary for the purposes at hand.  The IMB already has regulations that will not allow support of missionaries that practice tongues in congregational worship; however, this year they are also eliminating support for any missionionaries that practice a “private prayer language.”

They have every right to do this.  This is only a recommendation, but it is likely to pass on the Convention floor.  It will pass, only if the majority of delegates are in favor of it.  It is money that is supplied from the churches that sent the delegates that goes to support the missionaries.  If those churches don’t want to support missionaries that practice a private prayer language, then so be it.  As much as I would like to sit on the fence, based on the truth as I currently understand it, if forced to take a side, I would vote in favor of the recommendation.

My concern in this matter, is for those missionaries that are already on the field who have been receiving support for numerous years to find the rug pulled out from under them.  Even if I disagree with them theologically, for me it is a non-essential.  I would be in favor of asking them to refrain from teaching this practice, but I would like to see them “grandfathered” under the new recommendation.  If they are humble and respect those who are supporting them, they should have no problem keeping their practice in private.

Am I a hypocrite here?  Am I trying to please everyone?  I hope that you will continue with these posts (more to come) to understand why I straddle.


2 Responses to “Tongue in cheek…IMB”

  1. […] Pilgrimage Community a future church plant « Tongue in cheek…IMB Roe v. Wade anniversary » […]

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