Randall Cofield, in a comment left on yesterday’s post, informed me that the editors SBCToday have removed the signatory list from their “Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation.” The statement has been available on their website for signatures since it was released June 1, 2012. Certain SBC institutions and individuals also promoted it during the annual meeting of the convention in New Orleans last month.
In their announcement today the editors of SBCToday state,
There was never a “magic number” of signers in anyone’s mind and there was never any organized campaign to enlist signatories. It seems to us that to leave the list open further unnecessarily shifts attention to who has or has not signed the document, which is not the point. We never assumed we were speaking for all Southern Baptists.
The statement itself does claim to represent the “majority” of Southern Baptists, however. The last report I heard indicated that the document had garnered around 800 signatures. If 1000 people signed the statement that number would represent .0000625 of all Southern Baptists.
Though the release and promotion of the statement has resulted in some occasional rancorous dialog among its defenders and detractors, it has called attention to the great need for serious theological education and conversation within the SBC. Pray that this will take place without distraction from the shrill voices giving apocalyptic warnings and the sound of banging war drums, both of which can be found in various theological camps within and beyond the SBC.
You can read the complete statement about the closing of the signature list here.