Johnny Hunt, SBC, and “Calvinism”
February 21, 2006
Founders Ministries Blog: What should we discuss for an encore?
The above post is a follow-up to a blog entry by Tom Ascol over at The Founders Blog, concerning the possibility of Johnny Hunt being nominated to the SBC presidency, and subsequently what characteristics should we look for in a Convention president.
One comment in the original post introduced the suspected “anti-Calvinist” stance of Pastor Hunt. This snowballed into a debate of Calvinists vs. non-Calvinists (forgive the labels, they are adoptive from the debate), that exceeded 240 posts. Much of the debate was not on the merits of either position, but ended up being attacks of one group on the other.
I, myself, commented over at Friesville in response to Micah’s take on this entire ordeal, and I felt as if I should migrate some of those thoughts here, as well:
I like Johnny Hunt, he has a tremendous testimony, and he has made a
phenomenal impact on his community. He has an exceptional love for
young pastors and a desire to help them. Certainly we disagree
theologically; and if I thought he would try to use his two-year term
as a polemic to abolish “Calvinism” (another label I am not entirely
comfortable with) from the SBC, I would likely be spurned to more
action against his election. However, I highly doubt that is the case.
I have other thoughts on who I would like to see nominated. In the end,
the majority will win, and I think that is fair and right. I hope we
[the SBC] can continue to champion the autonomy of the local church,
agree on the commission (“make disciples”), allow for variety of
methods, and accept theological differences (to the extent that the
gospel is still proclaimed).
Am I naive to think that Johnny Hunt would not destroy the SBC? Is it foolish to think that in spite of my theological differences with him, that I think his dynamic personality and love for pastors will make him an exceptional nominee? There were those who have worked for him that commented in Ascol’s original post as to why he may not be perfect, but I would have to agree that they are likely biased (I can’t say all good things with respect to all the pastors I have served under). I am concerned with his character and his positions in reference to Reformed theology, but certainly, as Ascol points out, the latter of those concerns is not going to bring the end to Reformed thinking among many SBCers.
Up to this point, we are not comparing nominees. We have just seen those who want to attack the current (anticipated) nominee. I know of nothing that would necessitate anything less than my full-support for Johnny Hunt as President of the SBC. Until another candidate is presented, I believe he is the best man for the job (if he’ll accept it).