LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Extending forgiveness reflects the heart of the gospel, said Kentucky Baptist leader Paul Chitwood during a Feb. 11 chapel service at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“There is no way that the gospel is put on more beautiful and powerful display than when a believer is able, willing, and ready to extend the forgiveness that we have received,” said Chitwood, executive-director treasurer of the Kentucky Baptist Convention. “Genuine forgiveness is a shocking display of the truth of the gospel.”
Preaching from Matthew 18:33, Chitwood’s message, “The Gospel Mandate of Mercy,” offered a remedy for the pastor’s “common cold” of bitterness. In understanding the miracle of mercy and forgiveness offered to every person through Jesus, Christians are able to extend amazing mercy and forgiveness to others.
Chitwood’s experience in pastoral counseling immersed him in the reality that offering forgiveness is one of the “most profound struggles that human beings face.”
“More often than not, the root issue that was exposed during pastoral counseling was a root of bitterness that was growing within the soul,” he said. “And like gangrene, the infection was overtaking every relationship and every sphere of that person’s life. Sadly it’s an ailment as prevalent as the common cold even in the church. If we will be faithful gospel physicians, we must be prepared to diagnose this condition and to apply the balm of the gospel.”
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Boyce College, the undergraduate school of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will host and live-stream the NCCAA Division II Men’s and Women’s Mideast Regional basketball tournaments, Feb. 25-27. It marks the first time Boyce has hosted a postseason tournament.
The three-day event will feature teams from Kentucky, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. Boyce College will join Crown College, Johnson University, Kentucky Christian University, Piedmont International University, and Welch College in the men’s tournament. The women’s tournament will feature Johnson University, Kentucky Christian University, University of Valley Forge, and Welch College.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) —Expository preaching, personal evangelism, pastoral care, and congregational prayer are essential for church revitalization, said West Virginia Baptist leader William D. Henard III in a Feb. 9 chapel message at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“God is calling some of you to be church revitalizers. And you may go into a church and say… ‘There is nothing I can do.’ I want to let you know that there is always something you can do in [a struggling congregation],” said Henard, executive director-treasurer of the West Virginia Convention of Southern Baptists.
In his message, “Orthodox But Out of Focus: When a Church Needs Revitalization,” Henard, an adjunct professor of evangelism and church growth at the seminary, said 2 Timothy 4:1-5 illustrates that even when church revitalization is difficult and pastors feel limited in their ability to engineer change, they can be faithful in the four tasks of revitalization.
“I think God takes our repetitive longings and just reminds us of our need for him,” said Stinson, Southern Seminary senior vice president for academic administration and provost.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Countercultural Christianity is the necessary result of friendship with Jesus and the destiny for gospel ministers, said R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in his Feb. 2 convocation address.
“We have to go out as an insurgency,” Mohler said. “And we have to go out knowing that we are likely to spend the rest of our lives spending social capital in the world around us and the secular world’s mind in order to share the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ in all its saving power.”
Preaching from John 15:12-26, Mohler said the ground of friendship with Christ is his choosing and preservation of believers, guaranteeing his followers they can fulfill the countercultural work to which they are called. Mohler illustrated how differently he understood this passage as a teenager when Christianity carried social capital and no one objected to his call to ministry.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Six months after his parents moved from California to Uruguay with the International Mission Board in 1990, Steven Kunkel stopped speaking. His parents first thought their one-year-old son had culture shock, but knew something else was wrong when Kunkel did not speak for nearly three years.
When Kunkel was 4, his father took him to San Francisco, California, for a formal diagnosis. The doctors informed him his son was severely autistic, saying he would never be able to live on his own, learn to speak or make any friends. This diagnosis left Kunkel’s parents in a difficult situation. The doctors recommended they leave the mission field and put Steven in a school for autistic children, but they knew God had other plans for their family.
Two leading biblical counselors role-played a typical counseling session, teaching a full room of pastors by example during the Jan 7-8 Winter Alumni Academy at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Jeremy Pierre, associate professor of biblical counseling and dean of students at Southern Seminary, and Deepak Reju, pastor of biblical counseling and family ministry at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington D.C., led all ten sessions of the Alumni Academy. The theme of the event was based upon their co-authored 2015 book, The Pastor and Counseling: The Basics of Shepherding Members in Need.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Calling its views “theologically dangerous,” eight Southern Baptist missiologists published a lengthy rejoinder Jan. 5 to a recent book advocating the controversial "Insider Movements." The book’s authors claim converts to Christianity can continue identifying with their previous religious community while following Jesus.
Ayman S. Ibrahim, Bill and Connie Jenkins Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, coordinated the project with Ant Greenham, associate professor of missions and Islamic studies at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, to reject the various views presented in Understanding Insider Movements: Disciples of Jesus within Diverse Religious Communities. The authors say the idea was generated after they received copies of the highly-anticipated book, edited by (pen names) Harley Talman and John Jay Travis, from publisher William Carey Library.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Boyce College, the undergraduate school of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, is working with nationally renowned Code Louisville to launch a Technology as Missions initiative, providing web development skills through intensive training. It is one of the first organizational expansions for Code Louisville since President Barack Obama touted the workforce initiative and its $2.9 million federal grant to expand innovation in April.
“By hosting these Code Louisville classes, we will be able to provide our students with the opportunity to learn a skill that we have not been able to offer in the past, better equipping them to serve the city that they call home and to fulfill the mission to which they have been called,” said Jason Heath, vice president of technology and chief information officer at Southern Seminary. “I thought of this idea as a way to train up a new generation of developers from within our existing student body that would also equip our students with web development skills that could be useful anywhere.”
While serving as a U.S. Army officer in South Korea, Bryce Butler witnessed a depth of darkness and isolation, from human trafficking to poverty, awakening a concern for the broken and hard to reach. A decade later, Butler has combined a heart for missions and mind for business into an outpouring of mercy through his entrepreneurial roles in Louisville.
“I would never, ever, ever, have chosen to go to Korea, but the Lord opted to send me there, and it was awesome,” Butler said in an interview with Southern Seminary News. “My wife Bethany and I adopted from Asia because of my experience in Korea.”