Editor’s Note:We offer our condolences and prayers for the Lord’s consolation of the Clifton family on the news of Clint Clifton’s death.
For the sake of clarity let it be noted that the information listed about Clifton’s ministry is meant to establish the likelihood of a troubling financial link between Duke Kwon and Southern Baptist Missions giving.
No criticism of Clifton is intended.

About two weeks before Christmas, Duke Kwon proposed that transgenderism may give us a new insight into the Almighty:

“Interestingly the emergent perspective on gender may offer some helpful language with which to explain the traditional/historical view of the gender of God: ‘God is neither male nor female but chose to reveal and identify himself with masculine pronouns which we should respect.’”

All Christians would acknowledge that “God is spirit.”

But Duke says the “emergent perspective” (progressive view) on gender tells us something about God himself: that God “chose” His pronouns, and that “we should respect” that choice.

Note: Duke is not using modern viewpoints to explain truth to modern pagans; he is suggesting old-fashioned Christians could learn something about God from LGBTQ gender identities.

This is a seamless garment with Revoice theology. Participants at Revoice were asked to think about the “queer treasure, honor, and glory” that would be “brought into the New Jerusalem at the end of time.”

Except Kwon has gone farther, telling us that God Himself is Gender-queer like today’s Transgender practitioners. And in that sense, Kwon’s Advent meditation is closer to calling queerness a divine attribute, like students at Duke (no relation) Seminary, or Poet H.L. Hix’s genderqueer “translation” of the gospels, in which the queer are closer to God because God is universal, not binary.

To be clear: it is heresy to teach that genderqueerness is a Divine attribute.

Kwon is the Teaching Elder at “Grace Meridian Hill,” a congregation that meets in a Seventh Day Adventist church in the Petworth neighborhood of Washington D.C. Grace DC is a three-location “network” of PCA churches, planted in 2003 — at the time, the Washington Times called it a “Church just for Yuppies.”

If you’ve made it this far, you might think “what a relief! Duke Kwon is a PCA Teaching Elder. Thank goodness the Southern Baptist Convention is free of any connection to this Divine Transgender nonsense.”

But you would be wrong.

Southern Baptist church-planting efforts at NAMB are surprisingly connected to Duke Kwon.

The Collapse of the Platt Plan

The SBC’s North American Mission Board (the secretive, $100+ million a year, Enron of modern missions) has also focused on Washington, D.C. But its home base has, until recently, been safely on the south side of the Potomac, near Langley, Virginia.

Langley is known for being the home of the CIA and its bumbling coup factory. But it is also home to the bumbling SBC coup d’etat at McLean Bible Church.

As you know, Platt grew bored of being the head of Southern Baptists’ International Mission Board, and in 2017, he took a part time job with McLean Bible Church. MBC had been founded by Lon Solomon, and was the largest evangelical megachurch in the DC region. MBC was famously independent, and its legal documents said it could never join a denomination.

Then in 2018, he took the MBC job full time. And brought all of his SBC friends with him. NAMB’s current church planting model is a combination of subprime church loans, and 2-3 year jobs for “church planters” – recent seminary graduates loyal to NAMB.

In 2016, MBC had founded its own church planting network, “New City Network.” Its founding director was an SBC planter specializing in starting churches near military bases. He started in Quantico (home of the FBI academy), and he moved up the road to Langley (near the CIA).

Somehow, MBC’s Planter became tri-vocational – he was MBC’s director, but also the SBC’s SEND DC Missionary. And he remained a pastor in Quantico.

So MBC’s New City Network was run by NAMB’S SEND DC leader. Indeed, they were run out of the same office; SEND DC and MBC/New City were run at the same MBC campus office.

All of this support would make MBC a Southern Baptist church. The SBC doesn’t have “member” churches, but it has churches eligible to send messengers. But this violated MBC’s governing documents. Platt and the SBC tried to dodge the question, but members got fed up. And in 2022, they sued.

Suddenly, New City decided it has “matured” into an independent autonomous organization!

Clearly, MBC and Platt hoped they could solve their problem by pushing New City and NAMB into a different office.

This allows the New City / NAMB connections to be overt. On LinkedIn, Clint Clifton is the “Senior Director of Resource and Research Stratagy (sic) at NAMB. But at New City, he’s the Director.

At NAMB, he’s bound by the SBC BFM. But at New City, he’s only bound by the Lausanne Covenant. It would be difficult to keep all these theological promises straight!

Of course, it was done in a rush. New City’s website says its office is now in the 600 block of Indiana Avenue NW, in Washington but you can still find New City listed as headquartered at McLean Bible Church if you know where to look on Google Maps.

Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Divine Trans

So if you’ve got lots of SBC Cooperative Program money, where would you put your DC office?

New City only has three local staff, so you’d have your pick of amazing locations. Washington, D.C., is home to a vast number of churches, many of them with spare office space. Or you could office share; there are eleven WeWork offices in the DC Metro. There are eleven Regus shared office locations. The SBC itself even owns a small building in Washington – one where NAMB’s Senior Director might be able to get mail.

Is there any chance you put the center of the NAMB’s DC church planting efforts in Duke Kwon’s office?

Incredibly, that’s what happened.

In a small three-story building on Indiana Avenue NW, above a two-story Potbelly’s Sandwich shop, is Duke Kwon’s Grace DC office, in Suite 300. And there are only three floors to the building.

NAMB/New City is supposedly in “Suite 400,” but there’s no room for another floor or even a separate suite. It appears that NAMB and Grace Meridian Hill are in the very same office.

Is NAMB money funding Kwon and Grace DC? Is MBC money funding Kwon and Grace DC? It seems almost certain that they’re at least paying expenses.

But even if Grace DC was paying money to NAMB, why would SBC church planting in this region be tied to Duke Kwon and Grace DC? What influence is Kwon having on SBC Church planting efforts in Washington DC? This location is not convenient to planters or attendees. It’s in the middle of government offices.

Was there no room at any of the 78 other SBC churches within five miles of Washington? If NAMB needed a mail drop, why not use the ERLC’s Leland House a few blocks away? How can the SBC’s Director of Research “Stratagy” have his closest relationship with a woke, PCA TE, who muses about discussing God in the language of the Transgender movement?

This choice seems to indicate a close relationship between NAMB’s DC Director and the efforts at Grace DC.

Yet again, NAMB’s actions suggest a close relationship with dangerous, woke, Social Justice teaching. And yet again NAMB’s complete lack of transparency means Baptists will never get a straight answer about these connections.

The only thing worse than misleading David Platt’s members is wedding SBC missions money to Duke Kwon.

But if you want to be sure that your SBC offering plate money doesn’t underwrite Duke Kwon’s “Divine Trans” musings, the only way to be sure is to not give.

And that’s a Baptist tragedy.

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