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Adrian Rogers honored; CP giving encouraged at SBC
June 26, 2006
By Michael Foust
Southern Baptists remembered the late Adrian Rogers, whose widow urged the denomination to "graciously work for unity in the body of Christ."
Messengers remembered Rogers twice during the week, with his widow, Joyce, appearing at the podium each time. On one occasion, following an emotional tribute that featured a video testimony about Rogers from every other conservative resurgence president, she was moved to tears. But her words on the final night of the Pastors' Conference –- the day before Page's election -– likely will be remembered in years to come.
"Adrian Rogers would not have been a part of what is going on in some parts of our convention today, getting narrower and narrower about very highly interpretive issues," she said to messengers, who responded by applauding for about 15 seconds.
"He would try to convince you of his view, but not to exclude you from service and fellowship, or to prevent you from going around the world with Southern Baptists to share the Gospel if you disagreed on these controversial issues. And I challenge you on his behalf to graciously work for unity in the body of Christ."
SBC Executive Committee President Morris Chapman said the denomination must learn to "major on the majors.""It is time to cease narrowing the parameters of our collective convictions and widen the parameters of our vision for world missions," Chapman said. "... A continuation of the constant politicization of this convention and its churches will come at the price of turning conservative brother against conservative brother, of losing church members who love Jesus, love the Bible, love the church, love the convention, love the kingdom of God and love world missions and at the price of losing the favor of God upon us.
Messengers adopted a report from an Ad Hoc Cooperative Program Committee encouraging churches "to give an increasing percentage of undesignated receipts through the Cooperative Program." The report also encouraged the election of leaders whose churches "systematically and enthusiastically lead by example in giving sacrificially and proportionally through the Cooperative Program." Messengers defeated an amendment to the report that would have set a 10-percent goal for churches in CP giving. But the overall report emphasizing CP giving passed easily. (BP)