Sylvania is a Baptist church in Tyler TX, but what exactly does that mean? What do you think of when you hear the word Baptist? Do you think about a preaching style (e.g. excited, dull, funny, seemingly angry), music style, leadership structure (e.g. deacons or committees), or a particular form of dress?
What We Mean When We Say, “We’re a Baptist Church.”
It’s little known that none of these are at the core of what it means to be a Southern Baptist church. To the contrary, affirmation of the 2000 Baptist Faith & Message and financial support for the Southern Baptist Cooperative Program are the two requirements for affiliation with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention (SBTC).
So, when we say that we’re a Baptist church, we don’t mean that we hold certainly stylistic or structural preferences. We mean that we are actually Baptist, (1) affirming the 2000 Baptist Faith & Message and (2) financially supporting the Southern Baptist Cooperative Program. Because of our affirmation and support, we are technically affiliated with both the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention (SBTC) and the Southern Baptist Convention.
That said, because of our Reformed distinctive, we actually prefer the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith.