At ERLC Summit on Sex and Culture, Southern Baptist Leaders Encouraged to Stand Firm on Biblical Principles

The Southern Baptist Convention is hosting a three-day summit on sex. (Photo: Heidi Hall / The Tennessean)
The Southern Baptist Convention is hosting a three-day summit on sex.
(Photo: Heidi Hall / The Tennessean)

The nation’s culture war is over when it comes to homosexuality and same-sex marriage, Southern Baptist leaders said Monday, but now it’s up to the church to stand firm on its principles despite what the majority believes.

That goes for fighting off pastoral adultery and the urge to look at porn, counseling folks who live together without marriage and speaking out against divorce, too.

There weren’t doctrinal surprises, but it was frank talk for a group of about 200 pastors from across the U.S. gathering in Nashville for the denomination’s first Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission Leadership Summit in more than a decade. It continues through Wednesday.

The topic was sex, the group’s executive vice president said, because it’s a ground-level, pervasive topic affecting congregations. And even though everyone in the audience may agree on the doctrine, Phillip Bethancourt said, they need to be able to explain their beliefs to others.

“The Bible’s guidelines for sex are sustainable regardless of the time in which we live,” he said.

At the same time, other speakers said, nobody wants to come off as “angry Bible guy.”

Southern Baptists are the nation’s largest Protestant denomination, with 16 million members, and the commission is its public policy and pastoral education arm. The commission and its president, Russell Moore, frequently find themselves on the front lines in America’s culture wars.

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SOURCE: Heidi Hall
The (Nashville) Tennessean

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