There is yet another way to understand Keith Pohl's article. In his article he laments the the rise of the Southcentral and Southeastern Jurisdictions and laments the emergence of a conservative, evangelical mainstay. He even refers to this as the "Southern Captivity," which sounds alarmingly similar to the "Babylonian Captivity" that we read about in the scriptures and in the books of Israel's history. It saddens my heart to think that the orthodox interests of the majority of the church would be described in the language of captivity. As a southerner in the southeast jurisdiction, this is offensive. I imagine it is hurtful to evangelicals in the northeast, north-central and western, and overseas jurisdictions as well. Pohl goes on to raise suspicions about control issues in such things as committee chairs at General Conference and even the re-apportionment of delegates to represent the growing (conservative/evangelical) conferences as opposed to the declining (progressive/liberal) conferences. Pohl's very lament begs the question: "Who was in 'control' and who had 'control issues' prior to General Conference 2000?" The answer is simple: the liberal jurisdictions did! Bishop Roy Sano admitted as much in a press release when he lamented that liberals were no longer the majority in the church. I personally wonder if liberals were ever the majority in the church, but they were definitely "in control" of the general church. And Keith Pohl would have things back to the status quo of the liberal domination. Who has control problems? I suspect that the types of people with control problems are the ones who would recommend dividing the southeast and south-central jurisdictions by putting various annual conferences in into the northeast, north-central, and western jurisdictions! I do not mean for my observations to sound triumphalistic, but I feel like God really spoke through the 2,000 General Conference and that as a result it was a watershed event. The stage is set for the emergence of a new day. Who's in control? Not the southeast or the southcentral jurisdiction! Not the conservatives, evangelicals or charismatics! No, God is in control!
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