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A CHURCH HAS GONE TO HELL - Southern Baptists: A Denomination in a Decade of Decline by John V. Rutledge

A CHURCH HAS GONE TO HELL - Southern Baptists: A Denomination in a Decade of Decline

by John V. Rutledge

232 pages
The causes of a ten-year decline in Southern Baptist membership.

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About the Book
A Church Has Gone to Hell - Southern Baptists: A Denomination in a Decade of Decline analyzes more than 300 services of more than 100 Southern Baptist churches, with the objective of identifying reasons for ten years of declining membership.

The author let the services themselves dictate focal areas. This pointed to broad matters of concern such as church atmosphere, music, participant decorum, and dominant doctrinal themes.

A more narrow focus exposed primitive doctrines, and sermon style and content as the primary offenders to the intellect of a practical, independent, scientifically-sophisticated population. Sermons thus drew intense scrutiny, the result of which is a fourteen-section treatise on Southern Baptist sermons.

The author also traces Baptist problems to an autocratic leadership, and a submissive, unquestioning membership. The final chapter outlines specific strategies for reversing the decline.

 

 

About the Author
John V. Rutledge was, for fifty years, a Southern Baptist, and has continued to observe the church for the twenty years since leaving the denomination. Although still a Christian, he rejects the biblical literalism and the us-versus-the-world isolationism current among Baptists. As between holy and human, he prefers human.

 

 

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