Several leaders in the Southern Baptist Convention are considering a name change with an alternative, “Great Commission Baptists”, in light of the recent racial unrest as well as the SBC’s past endorsement of slavery.
Speaking with the Baptist Press, SBC President J.D. Greear explained that despite the name being initially proposed in 2012, it wasn’t until recently that many leaders within the convention have expressed greater interest in using it.
“Our leadership affirms the decision made by messengers in 2012,” Greear said. “We believe now is a good time to use it due to the fact that the primary reason we are part of the convention is for the Great Commission.”
The alternative name will be used as the theme for the 2021 Annual SBC Meeting, “We Are Great Commission Baptists.”
“By making this our annual meeting theme and encouraging the use of the alternate name, we do not in any way want to minimize the significance of our past, either its accomplishments or its failures,” Greear said.
By using Great Commission Baptist, Greear noted that it makes “clear we serve a risen Savior who died for all peoples, whose mission is not limited to one people living in one time at one place.”
“Every week we gather to worship a Savior who died for the whole world, not one part of it. What we call ourselves should make that clear,” he asserted.
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