There really is no argument that the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) is rapidly declining into a vapid morsel of what used to be a powerful voice of biblical truth. Succumbing to anything from social justice to charismaticism, the SBC is a world leader in ecumenism with its leaders partnering with just about anyone to achieve its notoriety as a moral progressive voice in the culture.
Arguably the most influential leader in the SBC, Russell Moore, has single-handedly transitioned the denomination from its conservative roots to an outspoken, culturally-engaged fleet of social justice warriors.
While some of the cultural war waged with the Southern Baptist Convention at the front lines are noble and just–such as the war on abortion–much of it has taken a sharp turn toward liberalism while mission drift has overcome the churches and entities within. Examples include Russell Moore visiting the Vatican in 2014 to speak at a conference promoting traditional marriage and family life. Sounds good, but biblically speaking, Christians have nothing in common with the Catholic Church.
Another example is Russell Moore’s continuous push for “racial reconciliation,” where he not only uses unorthodox ministers like Dwight McKissic and Samuel Rodriguez to parrot his message as a “gospel issue,” he uses Marxist ideology, namely Critical Race Theory, to make his case. While all Christians would agree that reconciliation–of any kind–is central to the biblical theme of reconciling God to man, cloaking man-centered culturally acceptable ideology into your central message and calling it a “gospel issue” is simply absurd.
Russell Moore has spent the majority of his career in the ERLC waging war on conservative views in the culture, including his push for open-borders in America and redefining the word “refugee” to include illegal immigrants. He’s waged war against traditionally southern symbols such as the confederate flag and statues, calling them “racist” and “bigoted”–despite their wider meaning for individual states’ rights. No Christian in their right mind would argue that American slavery was a good thing, but the common theme of “white privilege” and “white guilt” followed by reparations are now at the forefront of evangelical talking points thanks to Russell Moore’s mission drift from the Church’s responsibility to proclaim the gospel to changing the culture and correcting all of the world’s injustices, real or perceived.
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Russell Moore has never held back praise from those who’ve been highly influential in his life. He’s praised pretty much everyone from the pope to Beth Moore (calling her a “hero of the faith”) as “Christian” leaders who have influenced him. In a recent tweet, Moore praises another highly controversial, but prominent leader in the church, Rick Warren.
It comes as no surprise since Moore’s primary concern is not the unadulterated proclamation of biblical truth–but cultural change in what he believes is the best possible Utopian outcome. What our leaders should be doing instead of praising false teachers and gospel-deniers is calling them out, marking them, and avoiding them. How Russell Moore can boldly and truthfully proclaim that Paula White is a false teacher and a charlatan while embracing Rick Warren is puzzling–but easy to understand when you see that Rick Warren has the same cultural aspirations as Russell Moore while Paula White does not.