I think Mohler's comments on pastors' God-appointed role in saving people from ignorance, and his statements that most people "don't know enough" to be faithful Christians and need pastors to continually inform them, are worthy of more analysis and reporting than on a baptist blog.
Glad to see that Bob Allen at the Associated Baptist Press agrees.
Bob Allen over at Associated Baptist Press has run an article today at their website highlighting Al Mohler's FBC Jax Pastor's Conference sermon declaring how pastors are God's appointed agents to save all of us from our ignorance.
"Mohler: Preacher's burden to save flock from ignorance"- Bob Allen, ABP, 2/15/11
Bob Allen over the years that I've read the ABP and the BP since I started blogging, is by far the most objective baptist religion writer there is. Over the last 3 1/2 years since this blog began, Allen has not been afraid to write accurately about this blog, the sheriff's office investigation, the lawsuits, etc. - and he has written on situations at FBC Jax that were first reported on this blog in the earlier days of the blog. Perhaps this blog's article on Mohler's sermon caught Allen's eye and prompted him to write about it, but I can only speculate. And last year Allen wrote some of the most complete articles concerning the Ergun Caner saga and was not afraid to accurately explain the role that bloggers played.
While Allen actually reports what is going on in Baptist circles - fair and objective reporting - all we seem to get from Baptist Press and state convention run papers are articles that might cast a positive light on Baptist leaders.
Take for example our own "Florida Baptist Witness" - they tout themselves as the "newspaper of the Florida State Baptist Convention". But they don't report on most controversial issues, and in my view they are more of a mouthpiece for the religious leaders of the state convention than they are a "newspaper". The business editor and managing editor are John and Joni Hannigan, both members of FBC Jacksonville. If you look at the FBW Board of Directors, lo and behold you see that Brunson's wife, Debbie Brunson, is on the board.
So it is no surprise in the FBW that you won't see any articles about Mohler's sermon and his ridiculous statements about pastors and their appointedness to save us all from our eternal ignorance. In fact you won't read anything even slightly negative about First Baptist Church Jacksonville. Do a search on Mac Brunson or FBC Jax at the FBW site - no articles on the blogger fiasco that was on the front page of our paper or the ensuing legal action. No articles about Caner last year despite him being a close friend of Brunson and a regular speaker at FBC Jax since 2001. The Caner debacle was not a newsworthy event to Florida baptists? Or would have accurately reporting on it cast a negative light on FBC Jax because of the editors' pastor's and their church's close association with Caner?
Joni Hannigan published an FBW article last week - "Brunson's Jacksonville Pastor's Conference Conference Continues to Grow in Diversity" (congratulations to Mac and Trey, it is now "Brunson's conference") - which is a very lengthy article about how much of a smash success this year's pastor's conference was. Hannigan gives a blow by blow account of many of the speakers' sermons. Hannigan even gave the five sermon bullet points of Jimmy Scroggins' sermon from Sunday afternoon - now THAT is news! But she completely left off any mention or analysis of Mohler's sermon which was delivered right after Scroggins' and arguably Mohler was one of the keynote speakers. She did mention that Ergun Caner along with his brother Emir hosted the "student conference" at the pastor's conference.
So Baptists, be wary of the information you get - and that you don't get - from the Baptist Press and from your state convention news outlet that is probably run by the pastors in your state. It may look like "news", but I would characterize it more as a PR department for the views of those in power in your state convention.
Your best bet for news and analysis are the many blogs and reputable Christian news organizations. Use "Google Reader" to subscribe to the news feeds from your favorite blogs and news outlets, and get the content delivered to your browser.