Founders Journal · Winter 2001 · pp. 27-28


CBF rules (or Post-modern chickens come home to roost)

The Coordinating Council of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, a denomination-like organization established by moderate and liberal Baptists ten years ago, has approved changes to the CBF constitution and bylaws and will recommend their adoption at their General Assembly in June. In what leaders say is an effort to clarify what it means to “partner” with the CBF, the Assembly will be encouraged to adopt specific membership requirements. Under current CBF bylaws, any church or individual that contributes to the Fellowship is considered a member. That includes churches that simply allow individual members to channel contributions to the Fellowship without any formal action by the church. Under such rules, the CBF claims to have 1800 churches.

Under the proposed changes, churches and individuals would be required to “embrace” the CBF “mission” and “core values.” Lest this seem to be heavy-handed, however, the new rules will not “dictate how a church ‘embraces’ the mission and values.” As Jim Baucom, moderator-elect from Lynchburg, Virginia, explains, “‘Embrace’ means whatever the church says it means. They will decide for themselves what it means to be a part of the Fellowship….We would love for every church to adopt a statement to say they understand the core values of the Fellowship,…but it’s simply too much to ask.” Gary Parker, CBF coordinator for Baptist life and leadership sheds further light on his organization’s rationale by explaining, “We are trying to find a place for the church that wants fuzziness and the church that wants clarity.” If the changes go through, it appears that he will get half of his wish. (taken from an ABP report)

Founders YOUTH Conferences

A third Founders YOUTH Conference has been planned for the summer of 2001. In addition to the meetings in Bolivar, MO (“Reconciliation: Can’t We All Just Get Along?” July 9-13) and Toccoa Falls, GA (“Spirit-Filled Relationships,” June 18-22), a conference is also scheduled for Panama City Beach (“Who Am I? The Doctrine of Man,” July 30-August 3). For more information contact Bill Ascol, phone: 318/798-7088; email:

Founders Fellowship Breakfast at the SBC

Scheduled for Tuesday, June 12, 2001, 7:00 AM, during the Southern Baptist Convention in New Orleans, LA, the breakfast meeting will be held in the Louisiana Superdome (SW Quad Room 14 on the Loge Level). The theme of the meeting is “Louisiana Evangelism and the Doctrines of Grace.” Pastor Bill Ascol pastor of Heritage Baptist Church, Shreveport, LA will speak on “The Atonement of Christ and Evangelism.” Dr. Joe Nesom, pastor of First Baptist Church, Jackson, LA will speak on “Louisiana Grace: Louisiana Baptist Origins and the Doctrines of Grace.”

The cost per person is $10.00. Registration deadline is May 22, 2001. Payment and registration information should be sent to Founders Ministries, P.O. Box 150931, Cape Coral, FL 33915.

New Founders Press Book

In Defense of the Decalogue: A Critique of New Covenant Theology, by Richard Barcellos, has recently been published by Founders Press. Barcellos graciously and carefully evaluates the so-called “new covenant theology” movement from biblical, theological and historical perspectives. The book retails for $10.95. A special introductory offer $8.95 is available on orders received by August 1, 2001. Payment must include 15% fee for shipping and handling costs ($1.50 minimum) and should be sent to Founders Press, PO Box 150931, Cape Coral, FL 33915.