Thursday, March 19, 2015

Congregational autonomy

Albert Mohler, interviewed at WORLD, on the nature of "autonomy of the local church" in the Southern Baptist Convention. It seems to me a pretty good description of that tenet of Baptist polity:
We do believe in the autonomy of the local church, but we also believe in the autonomy of the Convention. The Convention has the right to set its own expectations for membership. Those churches who associate together in the Southern Baptist Convention have not only the right, but every responsibility to determine the churches with whom they want to be in cooperation and do this work. … The Southern Baptist Convention was being quintessentially Baptist when it said, we’re going to take our stand here. These are going to be the parameters of our cooperation. If you’re within those parameters, we’d love to have you. If you’re outside those parameters, you need to join with a Baptist denomination or do whatever that fits your convictions, but not here.