Friday, January 15, 2010

Lottie Moon: "A Champion Of Biblical Inerrancy"?

We all know Lottie Moon as perhaps the most famous Baptist missionary or at least the most well known one, but according to Paige Patterson she is "a champion of biblical inerrancy:"
In a story that's been largely overlooked (who reads Baptist news during the holidays?), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary unveiled several shipping crates purported to contain remnants of Lottie Moon's rented house from P'ingtu City, China, along with personal possessions and other 19th century antiques from the area.

Seminary president Paige Patterson displayed open crates reported to contain "some of Moon's furniture, such as chairs and a stove, as well as shingles, bricks and other remains from her house in P'ingtu, China," according to the article, which offered no information about how the items were authenticated as being Moon's.

Since Moon is known to have lived exceedingly frugally in a tiny dirt-floored house, the 35,000 pounds of materials reportedly contained in the shipment must have included many tons of bricks and clay shingles, as well as a lot of stuff that never belonged to Moon.

As expected, Patterson used the occasion to praise Moon as a champion of biblical inerrancy, something I've heard him do since the old "School of the Prophets" days at Criswell Bible College back in the 1970s. According to the article, Patterson prefaced his dedicatory prayer over the artifacts with a talk that "explained why Lottie Moon is so significant to Southwestern Seminary and the Southern Baptist Convention 'in the aftermath of the conservative renaissance of the convention.'"

This is nothing short of idolatry---though Lottie Moon indeed is a Baptist hero. Paige Patterson's zeal to prove his beliefs are the only correct ones have clouded his views of Lottie Moon. It is ironic that the fundamentalists believe that women cannot preach the Gospel at home but allow them to preach the Gospel abroad. Anyways what are your thoughts?

1 comment:

Gene S said...

My thoughts are that PP is being his usual arrogant PP self and speculating more than knowing.

In Lottie's day women were not prone to theologize. Plus, she was such a dedicated missionary that would be far off track from what would be discussed and taught in China.

Lottie was a school marm to a family in Bishopville, SC, before going Rome, GA, way. I was pastor of the Bishopville FBC and was shown the Planntation house and outbuilding where she taught by 2 elderly ladies in the church. I contributed the pictures for the biography which was being written at the time to compile what was known in the 70's.

After that I went to the Noonday Baptist Church in N. Metro Atlanta just south of Woodstock. They had their minutes since the founding in 1835 which were laminated and bound by the GA Archives so I could hold and read them.

Rome was a good day's horseback or buggy ride from Noonday Community so I researched whether a copy of her first request to Rome got that far. I did not.

The theological research and speculation of her love's day was a strange new thing pretty well held in the world of male scholars. It is highly doubtful such things were even discussed among women as they were pretty much considered "beneath" academic smoking room debate and banished to the kitchen or child care.

Ms. Allen did extensive research on her life and letters for the biography, never once disclosing any theological notions beyond the need to share the Gospel with every creature on this earth. Had there been such, I am sure it would have been disclosed.

PP has nothing but speculation for his part in this matter. Who can even be sure at this point the things delivered to SWBTS are really Lottie Moon artifacts. If there were clear proof in the stuff of CR theology, he certainly would have read it to the crowd with his usual smile of distortion.

I take this as another "redacted" version of SBC history trying to make us think we had strayed from the "true way" whatever that had been. Moreover, it should be in WMU hands and not out there in Texas.

They say Inerrancy. I say Autonomy and women's love of people who needed to hear the Gospel over the men who just wanted to build bigger Sanctuaries for their local church / pastor glory!

Said simply, Paige tends to stray from real truth in favor of his own version of "truth." It has been accompanied by some mighty underhanded political tricks and ungodly aspersions to his fellow believers in an Autonomous expression of the Gospel using Christ alone as its measure for truthfulness.