5 Observations on the 2015 SBC Annual Meeting

After making a rainy drive to Columbus and back, and stopping to see friends in Indianapolis along the way, we are back home in the Ozarks.  As I reflect back on the annual meeting, here are five observations I would share:

Columbus, Ohio - Site of 2015 SBC Annual Meeting
1)  This year’s meeting had a sweet and harmonious spirit.  I attribute this to the greater emphasis placed on prayer and missions.  Credit to President Ronnie Floyd on this.

2)  The restructuring of the agenda was also a good thing.  Rather than each session having a little bit of everything, sessions were more built around a particular theme (business, entity reports, missions, etc.).  For left-brained people like me, we appreciate the organization.  It seemed to give the meeting better over-all flow.

3)  The only thing I would change about this year’s agenda was having the annual sermon at the very end of the meeting.  This almost made it an after-thought.  The annual sermon represents one of the only times when someone other than an officer or entity head is given an extended opportunity to speak.  If we are truly a “bottom-up” organization, then the annual sermon needs to be featured more prominently. 

4)  I am excited about David Platt as head of the IMB, and I sense others are as well.  To me, Platt was the most engaging speaker at the meeting this year.  Passion for the Great Commission poured out of him as he spoke.  At one point he said, “The bow of God’s wrath is aimed at millions around the globe!”  (Wow! A little Jonathan Edwards coming out there!)  The commissioning service on Wednesday morning was particularly powerful.

5)  Gay marriage was seemingly at the forefront of everyone’s minds in Columbus, and rightfully so.  Beginning with the presidential address, and extending throughout the meeting, Southern Baptists made our position on gay marriage very clear, which we needed to do.  I am proud of us for that.  Our stance is not popular, but it is right.

The Southern Baptist Convention is not perfect.  We have our problems.  But I left Columbus encouraged that we are still a people who hold to the authority of God’s Word, and are committed to the spread of the gospel.