It looks like JD Hall’s prediction a couple of weeks ago that Russell Moore would throw the SBC under the bus within 90 days was about a year too late.
In a letter leaked by an Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission trustee, Russell Moore blasted conservatives within the Southern Baptist Executive Committee for their investigation into the damage the liberal ERLC has done to the SBC – specifically church giving to the Cooperative Program. Moore’s letter was written in February 2020 as pressure was mounting from Southern Baptist pews and the online discernment community to hold him accountable for the leftist positions publicly advocated for by the ERLC, including support for Critical Race Theory, liberal politicians and political causes, egalitarianism in ministry, and a lack of support for the God-given duty of churches to obediently gather for worship.
Moore – a lifelong Democrat, never-Trumper, and notorious race grifter – accuses the SBC Executive Committee of forcing him to live in “psychological terror” during his tenure as president of the ERLC. Claiming opposition to his tenure was the fault of a “tiny minority” and Executive Committee chairman Mike Stone (although Stone, who is currently in the running for SBC president, is not actually named), Moore wrote that opposition to him was not because he was anti-Trump, but because the Executive Committee was complicit in covering up sexual abuses in churches and Moore was too insistent on exposing these abuses.
Additionally, Moore claims SBC opposition to him was due to his commitment to so-called racial reconciliation and writes that “my family and I have faced constant threats from white nationalists and white supremacists, including within our convention. Some of them have been involved in neo-Confederate activities going back for years. Some are involved with groups funded by white nationalist nativist organizations. Some of them have just expressed raw racist sentiment, behind closed doors. They want to deflect the issue to arcane discussions that people do not understand, such as ‘critical race theory.'” He fails to provide any examples of who these white supremacists in the SBC are but blames those in the convention who think appointments should be based on credentials and merit for opposing his insistence in 2011 that the SBC choose a president based on skin color.
Moore’s letter is full of nameless accusations, manipulative emoting (such as a poetry recital and personal storytelling), and suspiciously has not come to light until well over a year after it was written and he has left the SBC for more liberal pastures.
The opposition to Russell Moore and the ERLC is theological in nature and has nothing to do with his stated support for sexual abuse victims. Moore has shown no ability to correctly apply the Word of God to the ethical and cultural issues of the day and instead has come down on the opposite side of faithful Christian churches, including on the issue of race. He has also done grave damage to the SBC by lying in an amicus brief to the United States Supreme Court, where he claimed that churches and state conventions were SBC entities, which would give abusive SBC organizations legal protection against disputes from autonomous churches.
In the Southern Baptist Convention’s 2021 Book of Reports, Moore brags that the ERLC defended religious freedom during the COVID-19 pandemic:
The ERLC has consistently and repeatedly advocated that the state treat churches the same as similar activities, businesses, and spaces consistent with First Amendment protections, while recognizing that God has given the state the authority to manage activities, businesses, and spaces during a national health crisis.2021 Southern Baptist Book of Reports, page 191
You read that right. Moore bragged in the report about letting churches be treated like businesses, and about his recognition that businesses can be “managed” by the government. So much for supporting religious liberty.
Now in addition to his appointment as a “public theologian” at Christianity Today, Moore has been welcomed with open arms to Ray Ortlund’s church Immanuel Nashville as a so-called “minister in residence,” a church that practices the very un-Baptist tradition of sprinkling babies:
So much for being a “faithful son of the Southern Baptist Convention.”
Russell Moore was and is an enemy of the visible church and particularly confessional Baptists. He is a career faith-grifter and the SBC Executive Committee was right to pressure him to the point where he took his wolfish unfaithfulness elsewhere.
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