The final report from the SBC Sexual Abuse Task Force was released this past Sunday. The body of the report and two appendices total almost 400 pages. It took me 7 hours to read through the material the first time. This week, I am reading it again as part of forming a measured response.
My first impression, however, was profound sadness. Aspects of the report are tragic, gut-wrenching, and despicable. While some of the report rehashed former incidents, there were new situations—at least new to me—that were heart-rending. The victims’ stories call for compassionate, definitive action to humbly chart a serious path forward. Nothing else eclipses that immediate need right now.
My other initial impressions touch a range of concerns—from polity, to finance, to organizational design; from leadership selection, to legal matters, and missional focus. As you would expect, the suggestions for the seminaries were of particular interest to me. But those concerns are for another day. We all need much more time to digest what we are reading, consider the options presented in the report, reflect on the proposed changes, and make some reasoned and prayerful decisions about the best path forward.
Given the scope of the report and the short time frame until the convention, the best immediate result may be the creation of an Abuse Reform Implementation Task Force. The current Task Force has suggested it will recommend this group be appointed by the next SBC president to assist with the implementation of reform initiatives over the next three years.
At the Anaheim convention, we need God’s guidance to make decisions with long-term positive implications—which none of us can really foreshadow or foresee. We need more than our combined insight. We need an intervention—a spiritual infusion of God’s grace, direction, and superintending power. We also need an intentional, definitive path forward. Let’s pray and work toward those outcomes.
Declining Religious Affiliation
Dr. Iorg evaluates why churches in the US may be declining and emphasizes that the gospel must take center-stage in the church’s mission.
Dealing with Angry People
There is a lot of anger in the world right now and a lot of that anger is spilling over into the church. This week Dr. Iorg discusses different ways to engage with and disciple angry people in your ministry.
Preventing “Let Down” Sundays
Easter and Christmas are just a few of the major Sundays that demand a lot from leaders and volunteers. How do you prevent burnout or “lagging” Sundays for the week after?
Spirituality of Jonathan Edwards | JEC at Gateway Seminary
Dr. Chris Chun hosted a digital symposium with Dr. Michael Haykin and Dr. Robert Caldwell to discuss Edwards’ spirituality, devotional life and theological impact in American Christianity.
Faculty Dialogues: Dispensationalism or Not
In this episode of Faculty Dialogues, Dr. David Rathel and Dr. Paul Wegner held a live discussion on their views on dispensationalism.