With all the consternation in the SBC over Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism, it seems that it would be easy to find folks of both these persuasions in the convention. I'm a Calvinist and I've met many other Calvinists. However, I've never met a Hyper-Calvinist. In all my time in various SBC churches, at an SBC seminary, and on the mission field, I've never run across even one person who claims to be a Hyper-Calvinist.
Let's set a few definitions as we proceed. Calvinists (also known as "Reformed" or holding to the "Doctrines of Grace"), in a nutshell, believe that God is completely sovereign over all things, including salvation. Calvinists also believe that all Christians should spread the gospel.
Hyper-Calvinists also believe that God is sovereign over salvation. However, they do not believe that Christians should share the gospel. They believe this somehow dishonors God because He elects whomever He chooses.
Therefore, evangelism is the primary difference between Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism.
Based on what I have seen and heard in my travels, I'm beginning to think that there are actually very few people who are Hyper-Calvinists. To all those who are denouncing Hyper-Calvinism, where are they all? I can't find them.
Even at seminary, where I ran into students with wide-ranging beliefs on the definition of church, missions, evangelism, discipleship, etc., I never met even one Hyper-Calvinist.
(By the way, Fred Phelps doesn't count because it is clear that he is not even regenerate.)
My greatest frustration with this entire issue is that some of the opponents of Calvinism within the SBC often confuse Calvinism with Hyper-Calvinism. Whether or not this confusion is deliberate I do not know. What we often hear is simply a straw man argument. The purpose in all of this seems to be a desire to make Calvinists look unbiblical; it is easy to do that when it is claimed that Calvinists are anti-evangelism and/or anti-missions.
We know, based on the historical record, that true Calvinists are missions-minded (or "missional," to use the new trendy word.) Great men like Jonathan Edwards, Charles Spurgeon, William Carey, and Adoniram Judson were all Calvinists and believed in sharing the gospel.
The same is true today. We all know that John Piper is a Calvinist; he is also a strong supporter of missions. In fact, his book on missions, entitled Let the Nations Be Glad, is the best book on that topic I have ever read.
So where are all these Hyper-Calvinists? I still haven't met one.
To all those opposing Calvinism, please don't confuse us with those who don't share the gospel.