Baucham, whose view on church membership requires local residency for membership, indicated that he is not technically a member of Grace Family Baptist Church in Spring, TX.
“My sending church (the church I planted) has always practiced regenerate, resident church membership. Unfortunately, this is not common practice in many SBC churches. As such, we have always believed that missionaries sent to the field needed to join local churches in order to be shepherded properly,” Baucham said.
Baucham went on to explain, “I am a missionary sent by an SBC church, supported by an SBC church, reporting to an SBC church, but am technically not a member of that SBC church because my family and I entrusted our souls to a healthy, indigenous, local Baptist church at the behest of our SBC church. Hence, it appears my commitment to missions and biblical church membership has rendered me ineligible for any office in the SBC.”
“At least that’s the way I read it,” Baucham said, indicating that he is convinced that “practicing non-resident membership” is “unbiblical.”
Apart from eligibility, Baucham would be a controversial figure if nominated for the SBC presidency, particularly with regard to racial reconciliation. Baucham stands roundly opposed to any use of CRT, as well as SBC Resolution 9’s affirmation that CRT and intersectionality are “analytical tools [that] can aid in evaluating a variety of human experiences” even while they “alone are insufficient to diagnose and redress the root causes of the social ills that they identify, which result from sin.”
Resolution 9 was a key point of contention at the 2021 meeting of the SBC, resulting in the drafting of a resolution that reaffirmed the SBC’s rejection of “any theory or worldview that sees the primary problem of humanity as anything other than sin against God and the ultimate solution as anything other than redemption found only in Christ.”
While opposition to CRT is common in certain SBC circles, other SBC pastors, such as Dwight McKissic, say that it would “be a slap in the face…to denounce CRT in its entirety.” What some SBC leaders see as fighting the “liberal drift” in the SBC, others see as fundamentalism.
Baucham is also a controversial figure with respect to his book “Fault Lines,” in which Baucham has been accused of plagiarism, as well as misquoting and fabricating quotes for those whom the book critiques. The publisher has denied these claims, saying that any confusion on the part of the reader results from a lack of clarity in formatting and attribution, not plagiarism or intentional misrepresentation.
Of note is the fact that a number of Baucham’s allies within Founders Ministries and the Conservative Baptist Network have consistently called for the resignation of current SBC president Ed Litton on accusations of sermon plagiarism. Litton admitted that he used content from sermons given by former SBC president J.D. Greear with permission, and had only failed to give proper attribution.
Simultaneous denunciation of Litton and support for Baucham in light of plagiarism accusations has appeared to fall along tribal affiliations within the Convention rather than pure principle, given the similarities between the two cases, as well as those between Litton’s and Baucham’s respective defenses of themselves.
Nevertheless, while much conversation has been had about what a Baucham SBC presidency would entail, it appears that unless his or his church’s convictions and requirements regarding church membership shift, Baucham is not likely to accept a nomination.