An Interview with Jay Scribner
Nominee for MBC 1st Vice President
Jay is the former pastor of First Baptist Church, Branson now retired
1. Why do you feel led to allow your name to be place in nomination for an MBC office?
I agreed to have my name placed in nomination for first vice president because I love the Missouri Baptist Convention where I have served for 30 years. I am pleased that we engaged ourselves in the conservative resurgence and saw God’s favor regarding biblical inerrancy and the exposure of a lack of theological integrity among the moderates/liberals. We need to continue the course which we have been on for the last 8 years. We have undergone some difficult decisions within the MBC during the last several months. I feel that I can be of benefit in helping to bring about healing and stability among the conservatives of our fine convention.
2. Please tell me about your conversion experience and a little about your spiritual journey.
I accepted Christ in college in 1969. I am a graduate of Hannibal LaGrange College, Oklahoma Baptist University and Southwestern Baptist Seminary. I served on a multi-staff ministry at a church in inner city Ft. Worth for five years during my seminary experience. After graduation from seminary, I was called to pastor First Baptist Church of Branson. I pastored this great church for 28 years. We are grateful for God’s favor in our ministry. Our church underwent a debt-free relocation process. We consistently ranked high in Cooperative Program support among MBC churches. We developed an aggressive missions ministry, both domestic and international. We enjoyed consistent baptism statistics. I have had the privilege of taking numerous international mission trips and have been privileged to serve a number of years on the Executive Board of the MBC under Dr. Reuben South, Dr. Don Wideman, Dr. Jim Hill, and Dr. David Clippard.
3. What is your vision for the future of the Missouri Baptist Convention?
The Missouri Baptist Convention needs to continue its course toward healing. We need to maintain strong evangelism and mission development. We need to establish an aggressive focus upon prayer, exalt Jesus Christ, and stop “fighting in the barracks!”
4. Please tell me a little about your family.
I’ve been married to my wife, Kay for 40 years. We have two sons, Paul and his wife Jill, as well as Mark and his wife Jaime. We also have 4 wonderful grandchildren, Jonathan, Molly, Andy, and Sophie.
5. What do you believe are the major issues confronting the Missouri Baptist Convention?
Unity and harmony, ending the legal battles, strengthening the Cooperative Program, assisting churches to become healthy through bible-based discipleship.
6. What do you believe are the major issues confronting the local Baptist Church?
Preaching the relevant gospel with doctrinal soundness, A call to uncompromised holiness, a return to biblical basics.
7. Do you believe the MBC should continue its legal case against the five former convention agencies who’s trustee boards voted to go self-perpetuating?
I definitely feel that the MBC should continue its legal case against the five former agencies. We need to put pressure on these irresponsible trustees to make honorable decisions and to stop the exorbitant waste of funds being expended on legal maneuvering. We need to withdraw any and all support, communication, and acknowledgement of these agencies until there is a repentance on the part of their leadership and their trustees. We have wasted a massive amount of money, as well as a tremendous amount of time as they have set about to splinter the MBC. There is no way that God can be honored through this gross display of disunity, disrespect for our history and heritage, and the reprehensible use of God’s resources.
8. Save Our Convention argues that a small cadre of Missouri Baptists are controlling the state convention from behind the scenes. How do you respond to that?
The bible says that it is foolish for a man to answer a matter before he hears it. They obviously have not done their homework, or are ignoring the facts. As a result of the conservative resurgence, more Baptists (from more Baptist churches) are being included in the overall involvement of Missouri Baptist life through the appointment and election process which has been in place for decades. The arguments of Save Our Convention are weak and ill founded, selfishly motivated, and disunifying to the positive direction that we should be moving under the guidance and direction of God’s Holy Spirit.
9. What is your opinion of The Pathway?
It is refreshing to have a newsjournal that is uncompromisingly conservative and to have an editor who is willing to take on any issue pertaining to the life of the MBC. The Pathway is becoming increasingly broad in its focus upon missions and its coverage of individual churches and ministries. We have a first-class news journal which is remarkable because of its extremely young life span.
10. Why should local churches continue to support the Missouri Baptist Convention?
Our theological conservatism, our emphasis on missions, our focus on evangelism, and our desire to help strengthen the churches of the MBC, along with the genius and heritage of the Cooperative Program, blend together to encourage us to “stay the course” as we work to expand God’s Kingdom throughout the state of Missouri and to the uttermost part of the world.
11. Is there anything else that you would like to say to Missouri Baptists?
Lift up Jesus!