Adrian Rogers wouldn’t want a ‘narrower’ SBC, wife says
GREENSBORO, N.C. (BP)--Joyce Rogers, widow of Adrian Rogers, longtime pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church, commented on what she described is the narrowing of parameters in Southern Baptist life June 12 during a tribute to her late husband in the Pastors’ Conference at the Greensboro Coliseum.
“Adrian Rogers was a gracious man who worked for unity in the body of Christ,” Joyce Rogers said. “… [I]n the battle for the Bible, he believed with all his heart that inerrancy was a hill big enough to die on. But under that umbrella, and the essentials of the faith, he sought for unity in the body of Christ, among Southern Baptists and the wider body of Christ.”
Rogers said her late husband had “other interpretations of doctrines that were important to him, like he was an avid believer in the premillennial view of prophecy. But he never considered that that was a basis for fellowship, and he believed that it was in the local church that you honed those beliefs.”
At this point in her remarks, Rogers urged the Pastors’ Conference audience to listen to her carefully.
“Adrian Rogers would not have been a part of what is going on in some parts of our convention today, getting narrower and narrower about very highly interpretive issues,” she said, touching off about 15 seconds’ worth of applause.
“He would try to convince you of his view, but not to exclude you from service and fellowship, or to prevent you from going around the world with Southern Baptists to share the Gospel if you disagreed on these controversial issues,” Rogers said. “And I challenge you on his behalf to graciously work for unity in the body of Christ.”