Category Archives: News

Free Will Baptists at ETS

Jackson Watts

This week the national meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society will hold its annual meeting in San Diego, California. The theme is “Christ in the Old Testament.” Seven Free Will Baptists will participate in the program, including five who will share some of their scholarly work. Below is a brief overview of the presenters, paper titles, and sections:

Baptist Studies: Phillip T. Morgan of Welch College will present, “Seventeenth-Century General Baptist Use of the Old Testament.

Pentateuch: Matthew McAffee of Welch College will present, “The Documentary Hypothesis Revisited: An Assessment of the Neo-Documentary Approach.”

Systematic Theology: Matthew Pinson of Welch College will present, “Are Arminians Synergists?”

Ethics: Matthew Steven Bracey of Welch College will present, “Edmund Burke and the Moral Imagination in Christian Ethics.”

New Testament (Luke – Acts): Jeff Cockrell of Welch College will present, “Showing the Good God to Pagans: Paul’s Apologia in Acts 17.”

Additionally, several brethren will moderator various sections:

Jesse Owens of Immanuel FWB and Welch College will moderate a Church History  section focused on Baptist Studies.

Zach Vickery of Tippett’s Chapel FWB will moderate a section on Septuagint Studies.

Jeff Cockrell will moderate a New Testament Section.

Matthew Bracey will moderate a section on 18th – 19th Century Church History.

Matthew McAffee will moderate an OT  Backgrounds section, especially as it relates to Ancient Near Eastern studies.

After the meeting, audio recordings of the presentations will be available to purchase for a small price at www.wordmp3.com.

Commission Member’s Work Featured at the Gospel Coalition

by Theological Commission

One of our Commission members, Jackson Watts, is also an editor and regular contributor to the Helwys Society Forum. This website is a collaborative effort of several younger Free Will Baptists involved in various ministries. Watts’ most recent article, Reflections on Ph.D. Studies,  was featured in Trevin’s Seven, a weekly post from blogger Trevin Wax at the Gospel Coalition. This post highlights “seven of the best articles” Wax has read in the prior week. This also marks the fourth time a post from the Helwys Society Forum has been commended by Wax.

Watts’ article about his educational experience is timely given the significant number of Free Will Baptists who are either pursuing higher education, or considering it. For example, a recent Welch College survey of graduates in the last five years indicates that just over one-third of respondents have completed or are currently enrolled in graduate programs. Watts’ article gives some practical advice about how to think well about research doctoral work, and how to persevere with the help and support of others.

While the Gospel Coalition is largely the work of Calvinistic authors, Commission Chairman Matt Pinson has also had the opportunity to contribute to the site in the past. Dr. Jeff Robinson’s interview with him was featured in a 2016 post entitled, “Meet a Reformed Arminian.” Pinson has also written posts or reviewed books on three other occasions, all of which can be found here.

Free Will Baptists sometimes receive attention from outside our movement, and perhaps not always for the same reason. Ultimately it is the hope of the Commission that non-Arminians will at least acknowledge the biblical plausibility of our unique theology, and especially see its persuasive and compelling application to many subjects which all evangelical Christians care deeply about, even if they disagree on different aspects of soteriology and ecclesiology.

Symposium Livestream

Jackson Watts

The Commission for Theological Integrity is pleased to partner with Welch College to make this year’s symposium available through live streaming. Simply visit the Commission’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/commisionfortheologicalintegrity/) at the scheduled times and you’ll be able to view the event.

Thanks to our friends at Welch College for making this possible.

Updated: Symposium Program

by Jackson Watts

 

Monday Evening

 6:00 – 6:15       Welcome & Prayer: Matthew Pinson, W. Jackson Watts

6:15 – 7:05        Danny Dwyer: Paul’s Address to the Ephesian Elders: The Ministry Ethos of the Apostle Paul as a Model for Pastoral Leadership

 7:05 – 7:25       Refreshments and Discussion

7:30 – 8:20       Thomas Marberry: The Eschatology of Luke

Tuesday Morning

 9:00 – 9:05      Welcome and Prayer

9:05 – 9:55      Jeff Cockrell: Showing the Good God to Pagans: A Contextual Understanding of Paul’s Apologia in Acts 17

10:05 – 10:55       Eddie Moody: Denominations and Denominationalism: Is there a Future in a Changing Culture?       (presented in Welch College Chapel)

10:55 – 11:10       Refreshments and Discussion

11:15 – 12:05      W. Jackson Watts: Cultural Analysis and the Dynamics of Leading Change in the Church

Tuesday Afternoon

 12:05 – 1:45      Lunch at Area Restaurants

1:50 – 2:40       Matthew Steven Bracey: Conservatism and the Church

 2:40 – 2:55       Refreshments and Discussion

3:00 – 3:50       Robert Picirilli: The Infinite, Immutable God, Creation, and the Real, Changing World

3:50 – 3:55        Break

4:00 – 4:50      Christopher Talbot: Toward a Confessional-Practical Theology

4:50 – 6:20       Dinner at Area Restaurants

Tuesday Evening

 6:30 – 7:20       Ron Davis: The Church as Embassy: An Ecclesiology for the Modern World

7:20 – 7:35       Refreshments and Discussion

7:40 – 8:30       Matthew Pinson: Do We Need to Keep Having Associations?

 8:30 – 8:35       Closing Remarks & Announcements

For more information, please submit any questions to fwbtheology@gmail.com.

The Apologetics of Leroy Forlines Published

by Theological Commission

A new book, The Apologetics of Leroy Forlines, by F. Leroy Forlines and J. Matthew Pinson, was recently published by Welch College Press, according to Matthew Bracey, managing editor of Welch College Press.

“The book has met with much enthusiasm and praise,” Bracey said. “We’re proud of this book and believe it honors the legacy that Mr. Forlines has left to us on the topics of apologetics and worldview thinking.”

Forlines, Professor Emeritus of Theology at Welch College, served on the Commission for Theological Integrity for fifty years, most of those years as chairman. Pinson, chairman of the Commission for Theological Integrity, serves as president of Welch College.

As detailed on the book’s dust jacket, “In The Apologetics of Leroy Forlines, J. Matthew Pinson brings together select writings of F. Leroy Forlines on apologetics and the knowledge of God. He begins the volume with a lengthy essay on the apologetics of the foremost systematic theologian of the modern Free Will Baptist Church and the contemporary Reformed Arminian movement.”

“I welcome this new book from my distinguished friend and scholar J. Matthew Pinson, which explores my previous writings on apologetics,” Forlines said. “In this book Pinson has brought together some of my writings on apologetics and epistemology from my book The Quest for Truth, introducing them with a lengthy opening chapter of his own on my approach to these matters. I highly commend Pinson’s essay, which excellently sums up my approach to apologetics.”

Forlines added, “The ideas in this book are timely. In the last thirty years, postmodernism has displaced modernism in the intellectual world, which has profoundly affected the discipline of apologetics. This book emphasizes how important it is to understand the changes that postmodernism has brought relating to evangelizing people and reaching them for Christ. The same kind of apologetics used under modernism does not work with the postmodern worldview. . . . My prayer is that God will add His blessing to this book, using it to extend His kingdom and give Him the glory that is due His name alone.”

“Most of my approach to apologetics has derived from conversations with Leroy Forlines,” Pinson said. “The word apologetics appears only a handful of times in his published writings. He tends more to use terms like epistemology, testing worldviews, metanarratives, and paradigms. As I began to encounter students who were interested in apologetics, I would talk to them about Forlines’s approach. Yet they were at a loss because he had never spelled out in detail, in one place, an approach to apologetics. So for some time I have wanted to write something on the apologetics of Leroy Forlines, to reprint and examine his writings on epistemology, worldview thinking, postmodernity, and secularism, distilling his basic approach to apologetics. This book and my essay herein represent a modest fulfillment of that goal.”

“I think friends who follow the work of the Commission and readers of FWBTheology.com will be interested in this new book,” Pinson stated. “Those who have attended theological symposia over the years have heard Mr. Forlines talk about the issues in this book again and again. It’s a privilege to celebrate the thought of our former chairman who was a member of the Commission for fifty years who has had such a profound impact on so many of us.”

Apologetics is the fourth publication from Welch College Press. To purchase a copy of the book, visit https://welch.edu/welchpress.