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Welcome to Beyond 400 - Baptists imagining life after the first 400 years. You can read and contribute articles in Go Fly a Kite, read the first 40 Baptist Voices that are now all submitted and comment on them, buy the Beyond 400 book, and share your thoughts on developing this site.

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This is a popular and attractive philosophy. It demands nothing, expects nothing and changes nothing. It is a sentiment detached from our involvement and influence. It is beyond us. I’m way too young to remember Doris Day, who first uttered these words in her song (I was born when Sly and the Family Stone did a cover version of it in 1973) but I am only too aware of how Que Sera, Sera is sung in the heart of every football fan who dreams of the journey towards Wembley (I’ve only followed the dream once with my team).

My main beef with this phrase is the hopelessness and resignation that the future is outside of our influence and the utter disregard for the resurrection. St Paul was frustrated by this kind of worldview too when he quoted those who did not believe in resurrection by saying “Let us eat and drink for tomorrow we die.” I wonder whether now, through this forum and discussion what we are all crying out for is a resurrected Baptist movement. I certainly am.

Posted by on in 40 Baptist Voices

The fact is, at my tender age, I grew up on a different page
I don’t come from a position of tradition or division
Christianity is relatively new to me
But clearly something made me say “Hey, I like the Baptist Way”
Some people may not agree with me, my delivery or the way I see it
Cause I’m not inclined to grieve what is lost if all that is lost is how much it will cost
For this project or that – is that our way of giving back?
People feel like they’re the one nobody cares about
Maybe we could just be there to try and hear them out
Do we really listen to all the pain and the derision?
Do we then take the decision that a group will solve it all?
Is it mission or ambition that makes us count every baptism,
Every seat filled with another… Jesus lover or something other?
Maybe if we’re listening our witnessing won’t look like we’re trying hard at fitting in.
When we look at making changes are we doing it in stages?
When did minister become synonymous with leader?
Cause I thought our leadership came from the Teacher

Tagged in: motives Poetic

The Beyond 400 book is available online online here.

Photo of Andy Goodliff

This book provides an intriguing and lasting snapshot of Baptists in conversation in the 400th year, gathering together insights from a divers group of contributors looking back, looking forward, looking in, and looking out.

The book comprises of the 40 articles and many of the 1000+ comments shared in the conversations that started at www.beyond400.net in 2012.  118 pages, A5.

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