I have been asked this question numerous times over the last few months. Usually it is attached to another question like this, “Since Al Mohler shares your reformed theology, why aren’t you voting for him?” Here is my answer to the first question: I am voting for Mike Stone because he is the best man for the job. Period. He is a humble, honest, courageous pastor. He bears the burden of shepherding a local church and so has the immediate accountability of that week-by-week responsibility (Acts 20:28; 1 Peter 5:1-4). He also has the ultimate responsibility of one day standing before God to give an account for his efforts (Hebrews 13:17). Furthermore, he understands the challenges facing us today and is unafraid to address them directly in order to encourage biblical fidelity throughout the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).
Since my days as a seminary student I have been concerned for the health of the SBC. In 1981 I wrote a letter to the Baptist Standard protesting the Dallas Baptist Association’s Director of Missions’ (as they were called in those days) proposal to have Southern Baptist churches include a “reverter clause” into their legal documents granting the local association all of the assets of a church if the church ever ceases to be Southern Baptist. That struck me as pure pragmatism and a violation of local church autonomy, which is a cherished Baptist principle.
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