Wednesday, April 02, 2008

"John 3:16" conference


Looks like Tom Ascol and some of his camp of bloggers may have come up with another way to waste money. The Flounders wasted $20,000 mailing a Hybrid Calvinist DVD to Florida SBC pastors and they wasted several other thousands on the "Bridges to Nowhere" conference last fall.

Recently I have noticed some on the Flounders' blog, commenting on the "John 3:16" conference which has been announced for November 6-7, 2008 at First Baptist Church, Woodstock, Georgia. From what I can gather, it seems that a number of the Flounderers are planning to waste money to attend the conference -- some perhaps will "live blog it" (Timmy Brister style), and some others will probably have plenty of fodder to write about in the succeeding months -- sorta like the fizzled Caners-White Debate of last year.

The Wonder Man of Many Words, Gene Bridges, appears to be tallying up the financial cost of attending, and even proposing that some type of "Scholarship Fund" be concocted to assist on the expenses of "Calvinists" attending the conference. Some are even talking about making and selling T-shirts and mugs!

Gene comments:
I can also now say that we ARE in fact, putting together some means for Calvinists who may be put off by this conference to come to it. . . . The cost to this conference, you know is $115. If I registered, I'd have a five hour drive, ten if you count the drive back. With gas prices now, I'm looking at $80 more. Add food and housing, unless I stay with Nathan or elsewhere. If I could go on a scholarship for at least half, that would help a lot. . . . I propose we, as a group, set up our own "scholarship fund" for folks to attend, particularly the Calvinist bloggers who can live blog the conference and offer analysis from "the front line." . . . My proposal to Nathan was that we use Cafe Press to sell mugs, tshirts, etc. with the StrangeBaptist Fire logo. . . . I wouldn't mind a tshirt with John L. Dagg's picture on it. . . . Also, folks can make donations.

I have an alternative suggestion for Gene, the Flounderers, and any other "Calvinists" who may be thinking of wasting money attending Johnny Hunt's conference:

Use the money you would waste going to the conference to purchase Spurgeon's book on "The Soul Winner," and see if you can't get some inspiration from Spurgeon to apply yourself to something besides complaining about the Johnny Hunts and Woodstocks of the SBC.

The fact is, as much as you despise the Johnny Hunts and Jerry
Vines most of you owe your own conversion to these type of "Arminians" anyway, so it would probably do you a lot more good if you studied Spurgeon's book and applied your time and efforts to a more beneficial activity which might bring some of the "elect" to Christ.

Leave Johnny Hunt, Jerry Vines, and friends to do their thing, and you do what you want people to think you believe in -- evangelizing of the lost. You might consider going down to Woodstock, winning some souls, and bringing them to Johnny Hunt for baptism! For once, at least, Johnny could baptize some converts of whom you might approve!


At Wednesday, April 02, 2008 2:40:00 PM, Blogger Stephen Garrett said...


You really made me chuckle with this entry!

You are exactly right! Such money surely would be better stewarded by buying Spurgeon's book on "soul winning"!

Keep up the good work.


At Wednesday, April 02, 2008 4:35:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brother Bob,

I trust you are well. I always am enlightened from your words. No less today.

So, our Calvinist brothers are interested in attending the conference, not necessarily to learn nor certainly not to be inspired. Rather from Gene's comment, it seems they desire it to be an economic endeavor at best or a "look at me" trip at worst. Interesting.

Also, interesting is imagining the response if some of us who disagree with Founders' brand of Calvinism would have anticipated performing a similar form of mockery prior to the BB conference. For some reason, I cannot envision a like giddiness coming from them.

Grace, Brother Bob. With that, I am...


At Thursday, April 03, 2008 7:40:00 AM, Blogger Rick said...

I wouldn't be too hard on Gene, he means well.

The more I read of "uber" Cals in this country the more I'm beginning to recognize that they are a very small group.

One might almost say that they are insignificant. Sure, they have some "name" members such as Mohler but by-and-large they are like mosquitos annoying a large bear.

The fact that people from triablogue, strangebaptistfire and founders don't comment on your site gives me the feeling that they are truely frustrated by non-5-pointers stance and would rather just ignor it.

Ascol wants to think that Cals are taking over the world. I've got a newsflash for him: the world has had enough of extremists. There may be growth in the Orlando, Florida area but that only means that people who can't get beyond fantasy are collecting in that area.

At Thursday, April 03, 2008 7:37:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


This is what is wrong with your view of conversion - MAN ALWAYS HAS TO GET THE CREDIT!

John 3:16 Conference is another swing at the same old thing - WITHOUT THESE GUY WE COULDN'T BE SAVE - AREN'T WE GREAT!!!

At Friday, April 04, 2008 1:03:00 AM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


Anonymous said...

This is what is wrong with your view of conversion - MAN ALWAYS HAS TO GET THE CREDIT!


Our Confessions refer to the "efficient" cause of salvation, and also to the "instrumental" cause.

Ministers of the Word are instrumental causes.

Paul was not adverse to referring to himself as the "father" of those who were "begotten" in Corinth (1 Cor. 4:15.

God has chosen to use the means of the ministry to save souls (2 Cor. 1-7). We fail to glorify God, who calls and empowers the ministry of men, when we fail to pay due respect to God-called ministers of the Word in their role of being used to convert souls to Christ by preaching the Gospel.

"Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?" (1 Cor. 3:5).

"Now we are the ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you BY US; we pray you IN CHRIST'S STEAD, be ye reconciled to God" (2 Cor. 5:20).

Every professing "Calvinist" who is saved was lead to salvation by some form of the ministry of God-called men.

At Friday, April 04, 2008 11:09:00 AM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


Rick said...
The fact that people from triablogue, strangebaptistfire and founders don't comment on your site gives me the feeling that they are truely frustrated by non-5-pointers stance and would rather just ignor it.

The fact is, if you will look back in the Flyswatter's early Archives, you will find the names of some of the Hybrid Calvinists who at first seemed eager to "jump" at tackling the Flyswatter. Fellows like James White, Gene Bridges, Scott Morgan, and a few others made an effort, but evidently decided it wiser and perhaps less damaging to the cause of Hybrid Calvinism to choose the "ignore" route.

In fact, I think I recall Bridges' even calling for a boycott of the Flyswatter by his readers.

For about two years both Al Mohler and Tom Nettles have chosen to "ignore" my emails to them about Hardshell Lasserre Bradley's appearance at the Louisville Seminary. See the following link:

Among other things, what Hybrid Calvinists apparently cannot handle is dealing with Creedal Calvinism which is contrary to their post-seventeenth century pedobaptist version of "Calvinism," especially the pedo-concocted "ordo salutis" pollution on regeneration.

At Saturday, April 05, 2008 9:37:00 AM, Blogger Rick said...

There is something else I've picked up from reading the blogs of "uber" Cals. Something that recurrs with regularity and I'm surprised it has taken me nearly a year of reading their blogs to pick up on it. I think that 5-pointers feel that until or unless they are a force in the administration of the SBC they would never be content, that they'll always be on the outside looking in.

I think that is the ultimate prize for people like Mohler, Brister, Ascol and friends. I honestly believe now that this is the overriding concern of theirs. And, that is were the irony lies.

If they were truely interested in reformed theology they would strike out on their own and thumb their noses at the SBC. But in reality what they are doing is trying to put on a happy face in order to placate the mainstream SBC enough to become a force. They are aware that the bulk of the SBC membership want nothing to do with their twisted view of scripture so instead of trying to win over the masses (as it were) they are going for the jugular instead--which means the machinery controlling the organization.

I think it wasn't Mohler's colon that caused his backing down for a run at the presidency. I think it was the consideration that he might just get beaten in Indianapolis and that would mean a crippling blow to the impetus of the 5-pointer progress.

I think that the "uber" Cals feel they need more of a build-up before they can wrest control from the normalcy of the mainstream leaders.

At Tuesday, April 08, 2008 10:25:00 PM, Blogger Charles said...

Bob: once again you have nailed it. Thank you.

Peter: The double standard is something I have written about often in this blog. See More Hypocrisy from Tom Ascol?



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