FIGHTING OVER THE UNPROMISED LAND
The Fundamentalist Takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention was never really about the Bible, liberalism or God's will, despite the Takeover group's attempt to make it so. It was all about one central theme: control. The Bible, liberalism and God's will flowed out of the central theme of control: controlling the Bible, defeating "liberalism" and mandating God's will for God. And in taking over the SBC, the fundamentalists in the past 27 years have led the denomination into unprecedented decline, disgrace and scandal (other than the 19th century support of slavery).
So what comes next? A battle among "conservatives" for continued control of the machinery of a still-large but rapidly declining denominational institution. Now firmly entrenched in their unpromised land flowing with vinegar and bitterness, "conservatives" have turned upon one another as many of us have long predicted. The two sides will soon be accusing the other of not believing the Bible. The youngsters (having claimed the biblical character of Joshua as their own) supporting the Takeover geezers are already labeling Wade Burleson and his young followers as liberals; the accused "liberals" deny the label and are hurling back charges of legalism.
Who will win Part II of the SBC fundamentalist controversy? Actually, that is the wrong question to ask. The SBC has already lost, and on a grand scale. The battle over the leftovers of the SBC will have no winners as this unpromised land is scorched and burned by the misplaced fervor of men who feign divine mandates for their personal prejudices and agendas.