LOUISVILLE, Ky. (ABP) — A Southern Baptist seminary professor says the Southern Baptist Convention should withdraw fellowship from a Mississippi congregation if it doesn’t discipline a minority of members who managed to block an African-American couple from getting married at the church.
Russell Moore, dean of the school of theology and vice president for academic administration at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., said in a blog that the pastor of First Baptist Church in Crystal Springs isn’t a racist but moved the ceremony to another church to create a “win-win situation” for both the couple and a minority who threatened to fire him if he went through with plans to marry the couple in their church.
The problem, Moore, a native of Mississippi opined, is: “The only answer to the ongoing struggle between Jesus Christ and Jim Crow is a lose-lose situation.”
“Mississippi Christians know, perhaps better than the rest of the country, just how satanic and violent racial supremacy can be,” Moore said. “We have danced with the devil and we ought to recognize him when he returns. But that’s precisely why Mississippians ought to be the ones to lead the way in showing the church what biblical reconciliation and revival looks like.”
Moore said he believes that the majority of church members are horrified by all the media attention their congregation has received, but what now needs to happen is for them to follow the biblical model of confronting the minority to seek repentance and reconciliation.
“That’s what I think they should do, and will do,” Moore said. “If not, the larger Body of Christ, particularly in the Southern Baptist Convention, should deal with this as an issue of defining importance for the gospel.”
Bob Allen ([email protected]) is managing editor of Associated Baptist Press.