Baptist Press is releasing four articles on emerging young leaders. The first article, "Young Leaders: Back to the Future" is by Bob Reccord, the leader of the North American Mission Board of the SBC. It doesn't say much, but just by saying anything it says something. In other words, by Reccord putting his name on the first article gives weight to whatever comes next. Probably a good move in an all too political convention.
A few quotes from Stetzer concerning young SBC leaders. My emphasis is in bold.
Theologically, they want “Baptist” and “biblical” to be synonyms. Missionally, they want Baptists to find new ways to reach our communities and the world.
The issues that are driving younger leaders away are not theological; they are cultural and missional. They are tired of being told that dress, worship style and traditional practices are biblical mandates when they are found neither in the Bible nor in the denomination’s faith statement.
In essence, we’re talking about their desire to be Christians who are living in a mission setting. As a result, their expressions of biblical worship use diverse music, preaching styles, dress, etc. It’s not about hipper clothes and cooler music. It’s about being God’s missionary where He has placed us now, not 50 or 500 years ago.
The conservative resurgence accomplished its purpose, and we have a group of young leaders committed to biblical theology and missional ministry. We must not now fight for our traditions as if they were our doctrine. They aren’t the same thing.
Younger leaders want to lead churches that are theologically sound and missionally committed. If they don’t find the SBC to be biblical and missional, they will find their own fellowships, and we will be the weaker for it. We had a theological resurgence, but young leaders want a missional resurgence, too. They want “Baptist” and “biblical” to be synonyms, and they want to get busy reaching the world!