Southern Baptists are the nation's largest protestant denomination, with over 43,000 churches and millions of members. Since its inception, controversy has surrounded the Baptist Faith and Message 2000, Southern Baptists' most recent confession of faith. The present volume consists of essays by Baptist scholars explaining and defending that document. Each of the 18 articles of the BF&M 2000 is addressed, with special attention to the most critical issues and changes from the denomination's 1963 confession. Also included is an appendix comprising the full text of all three Baptist Faith and Message statements from the 20th century (1925, 1963, and 2000), in side-by-side columns for easy reference and comparison. Contributors include Al Mohler, Paige Patterson, Tom Nettles, Dorothy Patterson, E. David Cook, and C. Ben Mitchell, with a foreword by Susie Hawkins. Brief yet comprehensive, detailed yet accessible to the non-specialist, this volume is a must read for Southern Baptist professors and students, staff and church members, and anyone interested in one of the most powerful religious forces in America.
Southern Baptists have no creed, but we have the Baptist Faith and Message, a confession, a definitive statement of our core beliefs and practices. One needs only to listen to the voices of the present generation to understand how critical it is that God's people know what they believe, and why they believe it. It is incomprehensible that a growing number of professing Christians are joining the chorus of skeptics and unbelievers in questioning the exclusivity of Christ, and Christ alone, for salvation. Philosopher Theologians Blount and Wooddell have given us a concise and easily understood guide through the basic biblical tenets of our faith. Read it now. Keep it handy. "Be ready with an answer of the hope that is in you!" [The Apostle Peter]. -- Morris H. Chapman, chairman, Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention This much-welcomed volume is a uniquely helpful resource for churches across Southern Baptist life. A fine cast of contributors have penned insightful expositions for each article of the Baptist Faith and Message 2000. The book achieves the careful balance of displaying the importance of the themes being addressed while keeping the essays accessible to a wide variety of readers. I gladly recommend this volume and pray that it will help individual believers, as well as entire congregations, grow in their understanding of foundational Baptist beliefs. -- David S. Dockery, President, Union University Throughout their history, Baptists have published many confessional statements to show that the faith they profess, while always deeply personal, is never merely private. Forth-telling the Gospel message and how it relates to every area of life is intrinsic to the evangelical identity all Bible-believing Baptists are happy to claim. The essays in this volume constitute a commentary on the most recent Southern Baptist confession of faith. The chapter by Tom Nettles alone is worth the price of the book, but the entire volume is an important resource for understanding America's largest Protestant denomination. -- Dr. Timothy George, dean of Beeson Divinity School of Samford University, executive editor of Christianity Today, and general editor of the Reformat Written with careful research and clear relevance by outstanding Baptist scholars and theologians, this volume will strengthen your personal faith and reinforce our Baptist convictions. You will be grateful, as I am, for this important work and significant witness of our historic and living faith. -- Dr. Jack Graham, pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, TX The scholarly interpretations of many of the articles have been theologically tightened from the 1963 version....This effort has led to well-written discussions. * Baptist History & Heritage, Summer / Fall 2008 * These are days when we desperately need a clearly identifiable profile of what Baptists believe. Doug Blount and Joe Wooddell have done an excellent job and have served this denomination well by editing this collection of insights on the BF&M 2000. Every Baptist in every pew needs to read this doctrinal examination. -- D. McCall ("Mac") Brunson, pastor, First Baptist Church, Jacksonville, FL