Other prominent CBN supporters include Michael Spradlin, president of Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary, Chuck Kelley, president emeritus of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and Rod Martin, a member of the SBC’s Executive Committee.
Spradlin, a Bible professor, says, “As a theologian, I’m very sensitive when you try to add to the Gospel or add to the Bible and say, ‘This is necessary for salvation or for godly living or societal change.’” Kelley, who calls evangelism his passion, says he’s concerned about a “true crisis” regarding evangelism and church health in the SBC. He has tried to speak out about declines in the SBC before, he says, and hopes this new network will solve some of the denomination’s “unsettledness.”
Martin tells the Christian Post the SBC needs to stand against sex abuse and racism and also must maintain the autonomy of local churches. The Executive Committee, he says, needs to protect the role of individual congregations to spend funds in ways that are faithful to Scripture.
Acting Out of Love for the SBC
Referencing the Valentine’s Day launch of the network, CBN posted: “We love our SBC. There is hope for the future of Southern Baptists, and we believe great days lie ahead.”
Spradlin says CBN is choosing “to work together because we want to get the Gospel to the nations.” Evangelism “has always been a rallying cry in a good way” for the denomination, he says, adding: “My hope is that the Conservative Baptist Network will keep people engaged in the Great Commission, that they will stay plugged in, that they will not disconnect or just throw up their hands.”
Timothy Pigg, an SBC pastor in Florida, tweeted: “What I love about the @BaptistNetwork is how every value is biblical.” He encourages people who’ve felt alone in standing for the truth to check out CBN, saying they’ll find “cooperation, concern, and Christian charity in every statement.”