FBC Jacksonville always has been pro-Israel Mac. We didn't need you to come in here and show us how to be pro-Israel by hosting this event that does not further our mission of winning Jacksonville for Christ. Although being a conservative, SBC church, and very pro-Israel, being pro-Israel is not our main focus, and it does not come before being Pro-Jesus and Anti-Abortion. Its sad that you don't have the wisdom to see this. Perhaps you are too beholden to the "prominent deacons" in our congregation that have a "financial interest" in Israel to do the right thing by your congregation (the words in quotes are yours you used to explain this event). By the way, what are "prominent" deacons, anyways? And what in the world could their financial interests have anything to do with the decision to host this event?
Mac I know you think you really answered your critics today by finally, FINALLY, announcing and explaining the Time to Stand to With Israel to your congregation this morning. You waited until 10 days before the event, hardly enough time to find a change of venue. Was this part of your strategy; or were you going to be totally silent about it except for these recalcitrant bloggers forcing your hand?
Only problem is you think we're a bunch of biblical idiots to give such a lame explanation for hosting this event. Sir, you forget sometimes that we've sat under the godliest of preachers for the past, oh 4 or 5 decades, and we see how dangerous this event is to the ministry of our church. We know that our faith, our Savior, comes from the Jewish faith, you didn't have to explain that today. And we know our Bible hasn't changed either - so you could have saved your breath there. The issue isn't our spiritual relationship to the Jews, the issue is the confusion this event will create in the minds of our community regarding the exclusivity of Jesus Christ to save the sinner, and the monies raised going to a Jewish hospital at which state-funded abortions are performed which is a slap in the face to those of us who are anti-abortion. These two facts make this the unwisest of your decisions since showing up in Jacksonville. This event is in no way the only means, and far from the best means to express our support for Israel - why can't you see that? If this is such a great idea, why are no other Southern Baptist Convention churches giving up their sanctuaries to hold these type of events? Somehow I just don't see you being the trend-setter in this area - I don't think Johnny Hunt or Ed Young (Sr. or Jr!) will be hosting such events anytime soon. These men have the wisdom to know what the mission of their church is and don't want to confuse their mission or their message in the minds of the people they are trying to reach. And they probably don't have "prominent" deacons that they consult when coming up with events to host. And they probably understand that there is little difference in the minds of people between "hosting" and "sponsoring"...they know that if its in our church sanctuary, and its on our website...its OUR event plain and simple.
This morning you failed to explain some very important things to your church. For instance, you said "we're hosting it not sponsoring it." OK, great. Why not sponsor it, and what would be wrong with sponsoring it? Do you think our community sees any difference between "hosting" and "sponsoring"? Its at our church, so its our event sir. Who is "sponsoring" it? Maybe the more relevant question is: WHO IS GOING TO BE TAKING THE OFFERING THAT IS GIVEN AND WHAT ASSURANCE DO WE HAVE THAT 100% OF THE FUNDS ARE GOING TO THE SAID CHARITY? The CEO and President of M-EDG has already himself said that he and no one associated with his company is sponsoring the event. What 501(c)3 charity will be claiming the monies raised as income, and where will these monies be disbursed? Would we not care where money raised in our sanctuary is going? Will 100% of the proceeds go to this hospital? You don't know do you, because some other 501(c)3 non-profit organization is going to take the funds, right?
Your arrogance in holding this event is breath taking. Your explanation this morning is so incredibly weak, as though you are COMPELLED to host this to show your support of Israel. Wow, we weren't born yesterday Mac! There are so many ways we can as a church lovingly support our Jewish friends - this event is not necessary to accomplish that task.
Perhaps just as breath-taking as your arrogance is the failure of the leadership in this church to stop an event that has absolutely no business being held in our church facilities. Not because we don't love the Jewish people, but because we know what our mission is, we love the people of Jacksonville and want a clear, consistent message to be sent regarding who Jesus Christ is, and we love unborn babies and don't want one single penny or one single hour of our staff's time to be spent on an event tied to abortion.
We're not going to let this one go...please people of FBC Jacksonville spread the word to those in our church who don't know what is happening. As Sheri said, knowledge is power.