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From "Funnymentalist" to Friend: The Evolving Relationship of Ben M. Bogard and J. Frank Norris.

By Baptist History and Heritage

  • Release Date: 2007-03-22
  • Genre: History
From "Funnymentalist" to Friend: The Evolving Relationship of Ben M. Bogard and J. Frank Norris. book review score

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From "Funnymentalist" to Friend: The Evolving Relationship of Ben M. Bogard and J. Frank Norris. Baptist History and Heritage Book Review Score: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars

Some Baptist scholars have argued that the conservative leaders of today's Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) represent a resurgence of Landmarkism within the convention. (1) These scholars point to the Landmark Baptist demands of doctrinal conformity, resulting in attacks on seminary and mission board leaders, as a precursor to the late-twentieth-century fight for power in the SBC. Missing from this discussion of the link between Landmarkism and today's conservative SBC leaders is an evaluation of the relationship of Landmark Baptists to the first wave of southern fundamentalism. An interesting piece of this earlier story is the evolution in the relationship between Ben M. Bogard (1868-1951), Arkansas Baptist pastor and the foremost leader of Landmark Baptists in the early twentieth century, and J. Frank Norris (1877-1952), Texas Baptist pastor and charismatic leader of early-twentieth-century fundamentalists. (2) In the 1920s and early 1930s while Norris largely ignored the Landmark movement, Bogard mercilessly attacked Norris and other fundamentalists. As Bogard discovered the depth of their similarities, however, he and Norris developed a friendship that allowed them to unite in their attacks on the convention system, especially the SBC.

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