EL PASO, Texas (BP)—A motion placed before the Baptist General Convention of Texas to affirm the 1963 Southern Baptist Convention statement of beliefs—not the 1998 revision which adds a section on marriage and family—was passed during the BGCT annual meeting's Nov. 9 morning session.
The action places the BGCT not only at odds with the Southern Baptist Convention, but also an array of U.S. evangelicals who have affirmed the family article added to the SBC's Baptist Faith and Message confessional statement during the annual meeting held in Salt Lake City in 1998.
The Texas action came in the form of a motion submitted by Bob Newell, pastor of Houston's Memorial Drive Baptist Church, that the 1963 Baptist Faith and Message statement be affirmed as a "unifying statement of our common faith and practice." It also stipulated that the BGCT "distribute this statement to every BGCT-related church, encouraging its teaching and noting that it was affirmed by the messengers at this convention."
The motion was passed on raised-hand-type vote with only a smattering of opposition, a convention spokesman reported. It was dealt with in about 15 minutes, with an effort to amend the motion, to substitute an affirmation of the 1998 SBC revision, failing by a similar lopsided majority.
While the motion made no specific reference to the SBC's addition of a section on marriage and family in 1998, key BGCT leaders publicly stated that the affirmation of the 1963 Baptist Family and Message amounted to a stance against the SBC's 1998 revision.
Clyde Glazener, a Fort Worth pastor who was elected president of the 2.7-million-member BGCT Nov. 8, "led the charge against the [SBC] amendment," according to a national Associated Press news story.
"That amendment, ...1
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