Unconventional nutter

OK – I really can’t hold it in much longer. I have to say something about SBC or I’m going to bust, but I promised my wife I wouldn’t say anything about anyone in particular or any action of the convention in particular.

And to get this post, you prolly have to read the original Nutter post to get some context. But as all of you know, I am a nutter.

Well, so what? What’s being a nutter have to do with anything that happened at the SBC in Greensboro – well, except for the obvious? It has to do with how nutters ought to be spending their time and talent and capital.

See: I’m a nutter for Jesus. I can’t help it. I’m teaching a Sunday school series for adults which includes the broad outline of who we believe Jesus is, and I have to tell you that I have a hard time keeping myself to 45 minutes, and I have a hard time not getting choked up over the beauty of Jesus Christ.

But because I love Jesus like that, there are massive consequences to how I have to spend my time. For example, because I love Jesus, I care about baptism. I care about the church. I care about the Lord’s table (which we haven’t gotten to in 18 months, have we?). I care about pastors, and my pastors in particular. And I care about other believers – not just in the broad sense of hoping they are all safe as it thunders outside, but in the specific sense that they all are inside the sheep gate, so to speak. That is, I am concerned that other believers are renewing their mind, and proving their faith, and being subject to one another. And most critically, I am completely nuts about those who are right now in unbelief – in a state where not only do they not have faith, but they hate faith and what it looks like.

If a bunch of like-minded nutters like me got together, I am sure we would find the time to pass some resolutions, and they’d probably go something like this (and I’m not married to any of these, but just so you can smell what I’m cookin’ here):

[1] Resolved: Jesus Christ, son of God, the one who pours out His blood and His Spirit for us, is better than anything else we think we understand. In that, when we are not doing His work and His will, we shouldn’t be surprised when we get disappointed by the things that happen to us.

[2] Resolved: The number of the Elect is unknown to man, and not just because it is a long list; God has not given us the index to the Lamb’s book of Life. In that, when we are not doing evangelism as if the eternal fate of those we are calling is at stake, we are demonstrating hatred and not love nor kindness nor theology.

[3] Resolved: In that same vein, evangelism is not a method – it is a message which is summarized, “Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scripture; he was buried, and he was raised on the third day in accordance with Scripture.” When we make evangelism into a method, we denigrate Jesus’ finished work by telling ourselves that our work somehow makes His work possible – when in fact it is His work that makes our work possible.

[4] Resolved: Baptism is necessary in the life of the believer for the sake of the believer’s spiritual growth; it is a result of the Holy Spirit’s work in the second birth, not a cause. When we make Baptism into anything else – like a measure of the effectiveness of our evangelism, or a repeated ritual from which we derive pleasure or reassurance – we make baptism into a fraud and dishonor God.

[5] Resolved: Marriage is a gift from God for a man and a woman to gain holiness, obedience, sacrificial love, and intimate union. We will defend our own marriages and the marriages of others ferociously.

[6] Resolved: The Lord’s Supper is the specific way in which we remember the cost of Jesus’ work. We will not treat it lightly, and we will participate in it diligently.

[7] Resolved: The Bible.

[8] Resolved: the Church.

And on and on. So notice something: there’s not a lot of “and we will beat the ungodly and the unbelieving over the head with our ideas about how they ought to live their lives because we have it all together and they’ ain’t noo-body going to tell ME to shut up.” If the nutters got together, we’d put first things first. And then the next time we got together, we’d put first things first again – because I’d bet we would have forgotten the first things after a little while.

Because that's how we nutters are: we forget to put first things first. If we had leaders, they would know that, but us poor nutters just have to fend for ourselves.