Mark Dever Keynote Speaker at Lansdale Conference

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Advancing the Church speakers include Dave Doran and Kevin Bauder along with Calvary faculty

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Shaynus's picture

Dever used to be my pastor, and he's an extraordinary man.

I was at Capitol Hill Baptist two nights ago,and Dever recommended and gave away a book by BJU professor Mark Sidwell called "Free Indeed." He's been helpful to a lot of fundamentalists, so this makes sense.

Don Johnson's picture

I guess this answers my questions about this statement:

Central Seminary ethos statement on Fundamentalism wrote:
For this reason, we believe that careful, limited forms of fellowship are possible.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

Bob T.'s picture

Now there was a Mark Dever who said:

1. You are in Sin if you have your church have a Millennial statement in your statement of faith.

2. That he would only allow 5 point Calvinists in his church pulpit.

3. That he is in and loves the Southern Baptist Convention.

4. That he endorses Reformed theology.

5. That he endorses the Reformed Lordship Gospel without reservation.

6. Dispensationalism is heresy.

Since I am fairly sure this Fundamental Baptist school would avoid that Mark Dever, is there another person of the same name who is invited to speak? Where is he from?

However, this may be a false rumor as I heard they have also invited the less controversial Rick Warren and I know now that is not true.

Greg Linscott's picture

Don Johnson wrote:
I guess this answers my questions about this statement:

Central Seminary ethos statement on Fundamentalism wrote:
For this reason, we believe that careful, limited forms of fellowship are possible.

Don,

Whether or not you agree with the action and choices, your own statement seems less than "careful," I must say. It has already been conceded in the Central statement that some fellowship was seen as possible. This is an academic setting (the conference is hosted by an accredited institution of higher learning). It is not substantially different in many senses than Fundamentalist faculty members participating in settings like ETS or NANC. You are implying that this is essentially a careless and reckless action- in a careless and reckless manner yourself, it seems to me. If you understand this to be "careless" fellowship, what exactly were you envisioning "careful" fellowship would look like?

Greg Linscott
Marshall, MN

Shaynus's picture

Bob,

Can you give me a source for anything you just said, particularly point 6? If you can't then, I respectfully ask that you withdraw your comment on grounds of gossip.

I'm pretty sure that the Mark Dever you're describing, doesn't exist, at least in part. If you're going to slander someone, please at least be kind enough to the truth to give source and context, not to say that everything you said is slanderous. Yes he he does endorse reformed theology. So what? He's in the SBC. Obviously.

Also, Dever would say that Ligon Duncan (yes, THAT Ligon Duncan) is in "sin" for allowing baby baptism, but it's not so serious that he won't have fellowship with him. It's a low-grade sin to believe and practice something the Bible is clearly against. In the same way, it's a low-grade sin to speak with absolute clarity about something the Bible is less clear about. That's how I think he would answer point 1.

If you look at the picture on the website, it's the same Mark Dever. Just to clear it up.

Jim's picture

http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/justintaylor/2009/07/13/dever-you-ar...

Quote:
So if you’re a pastor and you’re listening to me, you understand me correctly if you think I’m saying [color=red ]you are in sin[/color ] if you lead your congregation to have a statement of faith that requires a particular millennial view. I do not understand why that has to be a matter of uniformity in order to have Christian unity in a local congregation.

Seems that would touch on Dispensationalism that is pre-mill / pre-trib

Shaynus's picture

So he's saying that leading a church to have a doctrinal statement with ANY millennial statement is sin. Given the way I know he's using the word sin, I agree with him. He's saying it sets the bar higher than the Bible for membership, which is wrong.

He is most definitely not saying in this quote that "dispensationalism is heresy." Otherwise you would have to say that every millennial view is heresy. Not all sin is heresy.

Jim's picture

Clarifications:

  • I'm not defending Bob T's comment # 6 above (source unknown to me)
  • And I am not criticizing the Advancing the Church conference
  • And I appreciate http://www.9marks.org/ and what I've read there
  • I've read Nine Marks of a Healthy Church and I value it
  • But with regard to the sin comment above .... I heartily disagree with Brother Dever
Shaynus's picture

Jim,

I understood your comment in that way, but my last statement was directed more at Bob T.

Shayne

Shaynus's picture

If you disagreed with Dever on this point, would that make it wrong for him to come to a conference? Could he still be helpful in an academic context such as this? I suspect you would allow for disagreement.

Don Johnson's picture

Greg Linscott wrote:
Whether or not you agree with the action and choices, your own statement seems less than "careful," I must say. It has already been conceded in the Central statement that some fellowship was seen as possible. This is an academic setting (the conference is hosted by an accredited institution of higher learning). It is not substantially different in many senses than Fundamentalist faculty members participating in settings like ETS or NANC. You are implying that this is essentially a careless and reckless action- in a careless and reckless manner yourself, it seems to me. If you understand this to be "careless" fellowship, what exactly were you envisioning "careful" fellowship would look like?

But please, spare me the "this is an academic conference" baloney. It is the first fleshing out of what Doran and Bauder have been hinting at for some time. It is pure sophistry to hide behind the "academic" banner. FWIW, I have repeatedly disagreed with fundamentalist participation in ETS. I haven't thought much about NANC, so no comment there.

In asking what "careful" fellowship would look like... well, I haven't conceded that as an option. I have been critical of using this kind of language and have been asking what it means. This move seems to be the answer to my question. And yes, I do think it is careless, at best.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

Greg Linscott's picture

Many schools in the fundamentalist orbit have sent not only faculty, but students to NANC conferences, especially at Faith Baptist in Lafayette, IN. Whether you agree with the action or not, it has been behavior well-established for a number of years, and they have had a great bit of involvement with people whose ecclesiastical and separatist positions would be along the same lines as what we're discussing here (if not actually further from a separated Fundamentalist position than Dever).

I'm interested in what will be coming from the sources (Calvary, Doran, Bauder, et al). In one email discussion with a friend, he raised the distinct possibility that these appearances could actually lead to a forum where the differences are hashed out to some degree between Dever and those on the separatist side, such as the discussions at NLC on educational matters (I seem to recall hearing about an accreditation discussion involving BJ3), or the Calvinist discussion between Burggraff and Doran. I will admit I was not expecting this, myself, and I'm not necessarily celebrating- though I'm not troubled by it as you are, Don. I would like to see what unfolds.

Greg Linscott
Marshall, MN

James K's picture

I personally think part of what Bauder and Doran are doing is smoking out the movement fundies and hoping to retain the principled fundies. This thread is a great representation. The chicago way is naturally upset over this, but that is expected.

1 Kings 8:60 - so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and that there is no other.

tlange's picture

I appreciate Mark Dever and what he has done to strengthen local churches. I do not agree with him in every jot or tittle.

Why are some taking cheap shots at Central? Last time I looked it was Calvary in Lansdale that has invited Mark Dever.

There is nothing wrong with being a Southern Baptist. Fundamentalists could learn a few things from our SBC brethren, maybe being gracious is one of them!

Seems like no matter who is invited to speak at a conference, there will always be some uptight fundamentalist who look for the evil in everything! What a shame.

Aaron Blumer's picture

I don't know much about Dever other than reading 9 Marks blog a few times.
I can understand why Don and Bob and others would find Dever's remarks about premillennialism and calvinism to be troubling.
(I personally think the one about premil. in a doctrinal statement to be surprisingly off the mark... I mean, I'm premil, but I would not begrudge a presbyterian church putting amil. or something in their doctrinal statement. If they want, a local church can put their views on tap dancing in their doctrinal statement)

But really, his opinions on these things are not separation issues. The more relevant question for ecclesiastical separation is what does he do? That is, does he participate in ecumenical evangelism? Does he partner with ministries that deny the fundamentals of the faith? Any of that sort of thing? As far as I know, that's not his custom, so...

I do think that events sponsored by academic institutions are a bit different. It's part of the character of a school to expose students to diverse views. So having a conference speaker shouldn't really be assumed to be a blanket approval of all he does--at any conference really--but this is maybe a bit more obvious when a school is hosting the event.
It's never been clear to me why being "on the same platform" was considered a kind of rubber stamp "This guy's one of us" thing.
But some have long seen it that way.

Shaynus's picture

Capitol Hill and Mark Dever refused to participate in a local Billy Graham Crusade.

He presented a paper on JI Packer at Beason.

One was non-cooperation for the gospel, the other was academic discussion (and he criticized JI Packer at times to boot). In his 9Marks discussion with Mark Minnick, they agreed on the principles of separation, but differed in application. He sharpens my understanding and application paradigm on the issue often.

Joe Griffin's picture

Although I don't comment here often, I wanted to state that this conference is an exciting development that I would love to attend, although I will not be able to. I just attended a 9 Marks conference at Southeastern Seminary in Wake Forest, NC last weekend, which I greatly enjoyed. It wasn't my first conference where Dever was speaking, and I hope it isn't my last. It would be great to hear Bauder and Dever at the same conference. Dever is an example, along with others, of what I think is good about conservative evangelicalism. And Bauder's writings on fundamentalism has shown me a fundamentalism worth saving (to borrow a phrase).

Joe G.

Aaron Blumer's picture

There are just about enough appealing conferences now that if I got paid to attend them I could be a "pro"
...and probably pretty good work--if you can get it. Biggrin

Greg Long's picture

I welcome this development. I attended the 9Marks Weekender Conference this last spring and found it highly beneficial. Although I disagree with some aspects of Dever's theology and find the "having a millennial view in your doctrinal statement is sin" statement strange, I'm glad he is willing to speak at this conference and that Calvary is willing to have him.

-------
Greg Long, Ed.D. (SBTS)

Pastor of Adult Ministries
Grace Church, Des Moines, IA

Adjunct Instructor
School of Divinity
Liberty University

Becky Petersen's picture

Aaron Blumer wrote:
So having a conference speaker shouldn't really be assumed to be a blanket approval of all he does--at any conference really--but this is maybe a bit more obvious when a school is hosting the event.
It's never been clear to me why being "on the same platform" was considered a kind of rubber stamp "This guy's one of us" thing.
But some have long seen it that way.

When BJU asked Sexton to speak at Bible Conference, it gave made some here on SI upset....BJU is a school. Maybe it's different because it's Bible conference, though.

I'm trying to digest all this....

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

I think you're right Becky.

I was surprised to see this announcement too.

Aaron shared the same perspective in a different context on another thread recently. If we are going to live by principles, we have to let them cut both ways. I was one who complained about Sexton in the past. While I appreciate "much" of what Dever does, until he is ready to push for the removal of all disobedient churches within the SBC (separation), I do not think I am not willing extend this level of fellowship to him.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Becky Petersen's picture

Aaron Blumer wrote:
There are just about enough appealing conferences now that if I got paid to attend them I could be a "pro"
...and probably pretty good work--if you can get it. Biggrin

Aaron, what do you do in your "real job"?

Jay's picture

Becky Petersen wrote:
Aaron Blumer wrote:
So having a conference speaker shouldn't really be assumed to be a blanket approval of all he does--at any conference really--but this is maybe a bit more obvious when a school is hosting the event.
It's never been clear to me why being "on the same platform" was considered a kind of rubber stamp "This guy's one of us" thing.
But some have long seen it that way.

When BJU asked Sexton to speak at Bible Conference, it gave made some here on SI upset....BJU is a school. Maybe it's different because it's Bible conference, though.

I'm trying to digest all this....


While I agree with Don that Dever is problematic and that we shouldn't just give a blanket endorsement of everything he says and does, I think Sexton is different for two reasons:

  1. Sexton's http://templebaptistchurch.com/statement_of_faith/ position on Bibliology is wrong. The doctrinal statement of his church reads:
    Quote:
    The Masoretic Text of the Old Testament and the Received Text of the New Testament (Textus Receptus) are those texts of the original languages we accept and use; the King James Version of the Bible is the only English version we accept and use. The Bible is our sole authority for faith and practice.

    (Again - I have no problem with preferred MSS or versions...I have one! However, if you are going to acknowledge the KJV as "THE ONLY ENGLISH VERSION" we accept, then I don't see how you can avoid a double inspiration position. That's a heretical position.)

  2. BJU's Bibliology is orthodox, yet by sharing a platform with someone who argues for a KJV Inspired position, they give him and his teachings (indirect) support and uphold him as a kind of model, especially since they are a University / Seminary. This is exactly why BJU argues Graham was so bad for Christendom (and they argue it correctly - I agree with them there.)
  3. Differences on positions in eschatology do not result in the Fundamentals of the Faith being compromised. I disagree with Dever strongly, and have considered the normal, literal hermeneutic as one of the Fundamentals of the faith. But a person can be saved and sanctified and be a post-mill Christian. A person that teaches that you must use only the King James Bible is wrong (again, I'm going off of the logical steps from a KJV-Inspired position).

    Becky, is this thread ( http://www.sharperiron.org/filings/3-24-10/14345 ]Together For The Gospel: Jack Schaap and John Vaughn?? ) the right one? I'm trying to find it now.

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Dave Doran has posted a comment on his blog explaining his thought process in determining who he willwork with and how and applied it specifically to this upcoming coference at Calvary. I found it enlightening.

http://gloryandgrace.dbts.edu/?p=400 ]http://www.gloryandgrace.dbts.edu/

*** Forum Director ****
I updated the above link to point to the specific blog post instead of the site in general
*****************

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Becky Petersen's picture

I don't know what you are asking when you asked if that was the article? It is certainly one of the articles that discussed speakers at conferences, but since that was a church, it's a bit different situation.

The topic of a speaker causing waves has been an issue several times here at SI.

Aaron Blumer's picture

I think this is well worth a read in this context.

Quote:
Clearly the answer to the question, "Are conservative Southern Baptists fundamentalists?" is "No." This answer does not mean that Southern Baptists are not good people who genuinely want to serve the Lord or that the conservatives have not made advances within the Convention. Rather, the answer reveals that the conservatives are not going in the same direction as fundamentalists. Organizations which have been historically identified as separatist and fundamentalist need to decide whether they are willing to partner with conservative Southern Baptists and thus depart from their historic direction. If they are willing to do so, they should drop the fundamentalist identification.

http://sharperiron.org/are-conservative-southern-baptists-fundamentalists ]The rest here .

JGearhart's picture

Aaron, but we aren't talking about Southern Baptists. In this discussion we are talking about a particular Southern Baptist, Mark Dever. And even more, isn't the more important question not whether or not someone wears a label but whether or not they practice separation?

Jeff Straub's picture

I really am puzzled who get listened to on the internet . . . you can be a ministry drop-out, working in the secular world with a blog site and be certified to comment on a man like Mark Dever. Or you can be a pastor of a pretty small church but because you are all over the internet making comments and are blunt, then you are qualified to speak. Mark Dever has done more than most men for the cause of Christ. Do I like his view of eschatology . . . no. But he is not the enemy.

Where was the loud cry when John Vaughn spoke for Clarence Sexton and with Jack Schaap. Oh yea, and Mike Schrock was there also.

So, given the choice of hearing Mark Dever or Jack Schaap . . . hummmmmmmmm this is really a tough choice to make . . . NOT! Mark has done much to help redirect the SBC ship and, if you actually know anything about him, his music, preaching and style of ministry, is as strong as anything . . . no its really stronger than most everything in fundamentalism.

I for one wish I could go to Lansdale in February and am glad both Dave and Kevin have chosen to ignore the lunatics and do what is right.

Keep up the good work guys

Jeff Straub Wink

Jeff Straub

WilliamD's picture

Careless fellowship would be to limit or include fellowship where the Bible is silent. Unanimity seems to be the kind of fellowship that fundamentalism has embraced all these years. I for one am glad to see this breakthrough which was attempted last year with the Standpoint conference, but getting too many EV's and Fundies together in the same room was problematic. We just had Steve Lawson (SBC and 5 Point Calvinist) for a preaching conference at our church and we had people from the FBFI, GARBC, IFCA, as well as a broad array of Evangelicals all in one building: all together with one goal in mind: to preach the word faithfully and expositionally! That's something we can all unite around without compromising our individual theological commitments.

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