Archives for June 2013

A Primer on the Southern Baptist Convention, Part 2

Both a zealous commitment to congregational autonomy and a strong impulse towards cooperative ministry underlie the organizational history of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).  Throughout the history of the denomination, Southern Baptist leaders have carefully navigated the principle of congregational autonomy as they have sought to develop cooperative ministries. In the SBC, congregations own their [Read More…]

A Primer on the Southern Baptist Convention, Part 1

Next week, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) will hold its annual meeting in Houston, TX.  Over the last several decades, the SBC’s public profile has increased significantly due to the actions of its leaders and as a result of the media scrutiny that has come from solidly positioning itself on the conservative wing of American [Read More…]

You Might Be a Paleo Evangelical If…

Over at The American Conservative, my new Baylor colleague Alan Jacobs wonders if he is really a conservative (my short answer is yes), even though he declines to affiliate with the Republican party, doubts that corporate capitalism is the answer to all our social ills, and opposes “military adventurism” and nation-building. Jacobs centers his own political [Read More…]


This post concerns a book written some eight hundred years out of its proper time, and one with an evocative history. Any acquaintance with early Christian history means encountering the many alternative gospels that circulated so widely in the first few centuries. Commonly, these works involved secret discourses and conversations that Jesus shared with his [Read More…]

The Politics of Faith during the Civil War

Timothy L. Wesley has just published a book called The Politics of Faith during the Civil War (LSU Press, 2013). I have no vested interest in this, except that Dr. Wesley is attached to the History Department at Penn State, which was my former academic home. I cite it here because it might be of [Read More…]