January 28, 2012

The Amazing Disappearing Dr Voddie Baucham (UPDATE 1-30-2012)

James Macdonald's Harvest Bible Fellowship Men's conference ran into a little glitch today.


Lord, thank you for men willing to take a stand against heresy even while face to face with their friends.

(UPDATE 1-30-2012 10:14 am CT)

Voddie has given his account of the controversy:
The Elephant in the Room

This was probably the harshest paragraph:

4. Bishop Jakes is an example of the worst the black church has to offer.

One of the goals of ER2 was to address the issue of “racial” unity. Thus, Bishop Jakes was there (at least in part) as a representative of the “black church.” In light of the aforementioned issues, I was disinclined to participate in such an event. You see, Jakes was an invited guest; an invited ‘black’ guest. If he were mistreated, he had the race card; if he was accepted, he had entree into a new audience. It was a win-win for Jakes, and a lose-lose for evangelicalism. Obviously, he was not going to spout unadulterated modalism. Nor was he going to repudiate his roots (remember, this is his “heritage,” both ethnically and theologically). He had a perfect opportunity to find a middle ground and show “humility” in an environment that would be portrayed as “hostile” even though hostility was forbidden in light of the unwritten rules surrounding his blackness. Thus, his opponents had to choose between outright defeat and pyrrhic victory.

Superb observations. The entire set-up was just that -- a set-up. You couldn't disagree without being labeled and you couldn't agree without compromise. So much for the STATED premise of the Elephant Room.

I have a regular practice of posting notices of upcoming events in my monthly newsletter, and on my Facebook fan page. These have been invaluable tools that keep people apprised of when I’m coming to their area (or the area of friends and family whom they’d like to invite to one of our events), how they can pray for me, and what kind of doors the Lord is opening for the ministry.

As per my practice, I posted a link to the Men’s Conference and asked, “Any fan page members planning to attend...” As you can imagine, there were more than a few questions about my position on ER2, my relationship with James MacDonald and Harvest Bible Chapel, and a whole host of other things. I answered those questions as honestly as I could. I made it clear that I opposed the decision to invite Bishop Jakes; pointed out what I saw as his masterful ‘dodge’ on the trinitarian question (and subsequent affirmation of modalist language), and gave a brief explanation of my reasoning for keeping this prior commitment (see here for a recap).

This did not go over well with James MacDonald. Upon my arrival at the church the next day, he and I sat down (along with my assistant and several members of his staff) and had a candid conversation about my decision to answer questions in a public forum. Ultimately, we agreed that it was not a good idea for me to speak at the conference. MacDonald had already made arrangements for a replacement speaker. My assistant and I were escorted to a waiting car and taken back to the airport.

James was already preparing to kick him out before he arrived. That does indeed sound like James has received some vision from some 'god' and has the bit in his teeth. He is in deep error and is not being led by the Holy Spirit. It sounds as though, like all of them who achieve this level of worldly success, he will not be stopped as long as the worldly acclaim, money, and status keep flowing in. And we as a supposed Christian community, because we idolize those things too, keep feeding it to him, to our everlasting shame. It is the most unloving thing to do.