A pastor who could become the next president of the Southern Baptist Convention is suggesting the denomination is suffering because it has denied bigger roles for women and minorities.
"In our failure to listen to and honor women and racial minorities," stated J.D. Greear in a Facebook video, "and our failure to include them in proportionate measures and top leadership roles, have hindered our ability to see sin and injustice and call it out."
Greear (pictured above), pastor of Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, made the comments on Facebook just weeks before SBC messengers could choose him to lead the convention when they meet in Dallas on June 12.
Despite such comments, Greear also claimed he supports "complementarianism," the idea that men and women can serve the Church equally but in distinct roles.
Women in the church are "equal in salvation, equal in value, and equal in spiritual giftings all while being faithful to the inerrant Word of God," Greear also stated, The Christian Post reported.
Greear nearly became SBC president two years ago but dropped out, in a show of unity, when single digits separated him from Steve Gaines and threatened to split the convention apart.
Greear will be up for the presidency along with Ken Hemphill, a former Southern Baptist seminary president who is now at North Greenville Seminary.
The coming election for SBC president is viewed by many as a monumental decision for the world's largest Protestant denomination, since Greear enjoys the support of many Calvinists, including influential leaders who currently dominate SBC seminaries.
Greear's comments also follow the resignation of longtime SBC figure Paige Patterson (pictured below) over controversial comments he made decades ago.
Likely referring to Patterson's punishment, Greear also commented on a "dizzying amount" of revelations that reveal a "deep problem in the heart of our leadership and heart of our convention."
Reacting to Greear's recent comments, Christian apologist Dr. Alex McFarland tells OneNewsNow the video sounded like a "rallying cry for a social justice witch hunt" within the Southern Baptist Convention.
OneNewsNow has reported on a Texas pastor, Grady Arnold, who introduced a resolution calling on Southern Baptist messengers to denounce the nice-sounding "social justice" movement because of its association with left-wing movements such as "white privilege" and anti-democratic, Marxist philosophy.
Within the convention, there is also an ongoing dispute over evangelical support for Donald Trump, since some prominent SBC leaders opposed Trump's nomination and have denounced fellow Southern Baptists who vocally defend Trump.
Instead of focusing on "social justice" issues, says McFarland, the SBC needs to focus on preaching the gospel message or risk becoming a liberal denomination of "social-justice warriors."