Southern Baptist Executive Committee Exchanges Scriptural Standards For Critical Theory On Sexual Abuse

Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash

In an act of spite at the time of his May 2021 resignation from the ERLC, Russell Moore accused Southern Baptists of systematically covering up sexual abuse scandals for many years. Conservatives in the convention rightly pointed out that if such accusations were true, Moore was the most culpable party, as he would have held direct knowledge of such claims for many years without doing anything about them.

Moore theatrics carried over into the June 2021 Southern Baptist Convention, as alleged sex abuse victims were deftly used as props by the leftists in the convention to create a spectacle and galvanize last-minute opposition to conservative SBC presidential candidate Mike Stone. Consequently, Serial plagiarist Ed Litton ascended to SBC presidency and a task force was appointed by Litton to investigate Moore’s allegation that the executive committee covered up allegations of abuse.

In October 2021, activist elements on the task force pressured the executive committee to relinquish its attorney-client privilege, opening the Executive Committee and its individual members up to the high potential for lawsuits. The law firm that represented the executive committee, as well as 17 executive committee members resigned in protest of the decision.

On February 22, 2022, the executive committee issued a statement of apology to a former Lifeway employee who was previously accused of being in a “morally inappropriate relationship”. The woman alleges that at the age of 26, as a Southern Seminary master of divinity student on a mission trip, she was coerced into having sex with a seminary professor. The relationship between the woman and her professor continued for 12 years, despite the woman moving from Louisville, Ky, to Chicago, to Nashville, over a 12-year period.  In addition to the apology, the executive committee also reached an undisclosed financial settlement with the woman.

Deuteronomy 22:23-27 illustrates how God commanded Israel to perform justice in regard to sexual abuse, differentiating between consensual adultery which required the death of both parties; and rape, which required the death of the man. While Christians today don’t advocate the death penalty for adultery, the moral principle in God’s law that determines guilt and innocence remains valid even today.

“If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbor’s wife. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. “But if in the open country a man meets a young woman who is betrothed, and the man seizes her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die.  But you shall do nothing to the young woman; she has committed no offense punishable by death. For this case is like that of a man attacking and murdering his neighbor,  because he met her in the open country, and though the betrothed young woman cried for help there was no one to rescue her.

The change in direction by the committee after the departure of 17 of its most conservative members illustrates the shift from Biblical justice to critical theory, a shift that should not surprise anyone, considering that a large portion of the SBC views critical race theory and critical gender theory as “useful analytical tools”.

In the new status quo, a victim can be anyone who claims that they were taken advantage of by an individual with power, privilege, or authority, mirroring the accusations of the #metoo movement. An individual who offers consent to commit adultery and then regrets their sin several years later is cast as the victim. An individual who has a long-term affair can end the relationship and cash in at the executive committee gravy train.

If you are a member of an SBC church, an increasingly large amount of your tithe will be placed into a sexual abuse settlement slush fund to be given to anyone who brings an allegation of sexual abuse, regardless of whether the accusation is credible or substantiated by 2 or more witnesses, as required by scripture.

 Do not admit a charge against an elder except on the evidence of two or three witnesses. -1 Timothy 5:19

It is true that real sexual abuse does occur. All Christians can agree that common sense safeguards should be put into place to protect victims from abuse (such as performing criminal background checks and prohibiting sex offenders from working with children). Christians have a standard that comes from scripture. That standard defines sin and abuse. When one person who partakes in a consensual adulterous relationship is considered a sinner, while the other is considered a victim, scripture is abused and real sexual-abuse claims are bastardized. God will not be mocked. The SBC will reap that which it has sown.

Editor’s Note. This article was written by Paul Brown as a guest post for Protestia.

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