Southwestern Seminary, Paige Patterson, and Christian Speech

I have taken down the two posts I had on this blog about Southwestern Seminary and its president, Paige Patterson. I have done so not because my opinions have changed, but because it has become apparent to me that my way of voicing those opinions has distressed some people I do not want to distress. Furthermore, I have become less and less sure in my own mind that the sarcasm I used in those posts was edifying for anyone involved.

These kinds of issues make me sad and angry, and I often don’t observe the apostolic injunction to “speak the truth in love” when I am sad or angry. I’m not confident that these posts met the apostle’s test, so I have yanked them. And I apologize to those who were offended by their tone, which was intended to amuse and, yes, provoke, but not to seriously offend–not even Brother Patterson himself.

One more thing: I am glad to say no one at Southwestern or at Regent has asked me to do this. I have removed these posts on my own initiative and according to my own conscience. There frankly is far too much wounding speech around these gender discussions and I regret adding in any way to it.

0 Responses to “Southwestern Seminary, Paige Patterson, and Christian Speech”

  1. Bene D

    Alas.
    Google caches.

    Went into cache and read your posts and all the comments carefully.

    You were clear, ethical and you extended the courtesty of linking to Baptist Press – the official inhouse SBC organ.
    It’s a topic that was an opportunity to plug your book for readers that wish to explore it.
    You were gracious to your commenters.

    Spend some time in the SBC blogosphere regarding Dr. Sheri Klouda and Southwestern.
    You’ll see some serious angry without the sad.

    I hope this doesn’t discourage you from blogging.

    This is a free wheeling and open medium and while it is important we remain true to our ethics and be edifying, you are going to get people responding on/to a blog platform that will never be and who could never be in your classroom.

    A blog can be a vulnerable place, you don’t see Paige Patterson or Al Mohler permitting comments.
    Mohler doesn’t put up his own columns, he has people for that.

    I respect your need to rethink posts published in sadness and anger, every blogger has been there done that – please, I beg you, don’t second guess yourself out of the blogosphere, you are needed.

    Thanks for being clear about your reasons you took your posts down.

    Here is the court filing.
    http://www.twelvewitnesses.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/03/district-court.pdf
    Complaints have also been filed with with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and Association of Theological Schools.

    Blog on!

  2. Beyond Words

    Thank you for your witness on behalf of women, which is critical because of your credibility on other issues of orthodoxy and orthopraxy. Thank you for your honesty, courage and humility.

    This brings up another issue we should all prayerfully consider in the discussions of gender roles. Evidence for correct discernment is shown in the Spirit’s fruit, don’t you think? Those of us who believe scripture teaches that women may have and practice the same spiritual gifts as men should be exhibiting evidence of the Spirit in our lives. We should be filled with love and patience and humility, and our witness should be working with the Spirit to draw people to Jesus.

  3. mtraphagen

    Thank you for this, John. I know I have been guilty on my own blog (and in comments on others) of getting way too hot and/or sarcastic in my responses to the gender issue. But the very fact that this is such a “hot” issue makes it all the more important that those of us who are trying to challenge the prevailing paradigms should act above reproach at all times. We have enough to overcome without having to first overcome (sometimes deserved!) ad hominems hurled at us.

  4. Paul

    John,

    Really appreciate your sensitivity to the importance of our language.

    Blessings.

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