Christian pastors and leaders should build their ministries soley upon the foundation of the unmerited grace of the gospel, said West Louisville pastor T.C. Taylor in an Oct. 22 chapel message at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Taylor, who is lead pastor of New Breed Church in Louisville, Kentucky, said the Christian minister should be well-grounded in the gospel to avoid pride, self-sufficiency, and worldly ambition that often accompanies pastoral ministry.
“If you’re going to do ministry effectively, you have to serve out of the gospel of Jesus Christ,” said Taylor. “You have to serve out of the reality that, ‘I’m serving, not to be saved but because I’m saved, and the fact that God saved me has motivated me to want to see many, many, many more people saved and forgiven from their sins. That’s got to be your motivation, because if your motivation is anything else, it’s not going to stick.”
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary launched a new mobile app and redesigned website for R. Albert Mohler Jr., offering users more convenient ways to engage with the evangelical leader’s content.
In the past year, more than 1.6 million people visited AlbertMohler.com for the seminary president’s essays, his daily podcast “The Briefing,” and “Thinking In Public” conversations, resulting in 6.4 million pageviews.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (SBTS) — When his lesbian college professor, a well-known Jonathan Edwards scholar, handed him a copy of “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” Nick Nye says “devouring” the classic Puritan sermon helped awaken a love for Scripture and renewed his understanding of God’s grace.
His professor’s recommendation of other Puritan writings and Augustine’s Confessions was a catalyst for shaping his theological views. It seems fitting, 15 years later, that a lesbian, agnostic Edwards scholar’s guidance set him on a trajectory toward studying at Southern Seminary and planting a Southern Baptist church in a “gayborhood” of Ohio’s largest city.
“I feel like I just connect well with those who are far away from God, and I really want to listen and learn from them, and God always used those people to influence and shape me,” said Nye, the 35-year-old founding pastor of Veritas Community Church in the Short North district of Columbus, Ohio.
In radio, silence is not golden. Indeed, “dead air” — a period of unintended silence during a live program — is a broadcaster’s nightmare.
Jerry Johnson’s mission in leading the National Religious Broadcasters is to protect his fellow communicators’ right to exist and prevent the worst kind of dead air — the censorship of evangelical voices on radio, television, the Internet, and social media.
Johnson, a 2003 Ph.D. graduate of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, assumed the presidency of NRB in November 2013 with a mission to transform the historic evangelical organization for the modern world of media and prepare its members for the growing opposition they face in the federal government, the commercial world, and broader society.
Nick Moore, his wife, Kyndra, and the couple’s seven children are moving to Zimbabwe.
Their announcement at the International Mission Board’s May 13 commissioning service at Highview Baptist East in Louisville garnered a collective gasp throughout the auditorium.
“We’re trying to show that when God calls you and makes it clear that you are called, he will provide the way for that to happen,” said Moore, 30, a two-time alumnus of Southern Seminary. “Don’t limit God’s ability to make a way where it seems there might not be a way.”
The IMB is sending Moore to help revitalize the Baptist Theological Seminary of Zimbabwe, which has struggled since national Baptist leaders forced out a liberal principal in 2011 for refusing to adhere to the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Christians must resolve to preach the Word of God even as a secular culture rejoices over perceived victory in the sexual revolution, said R. Albert Mohler Jr. president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in an Oct. 14 message during the institution’s annual Heritage Week.
“We’ve got to prepare a generation of ministers who are going to be able to keep their conviction and keep their message and open their mouths and speak and not be silent,” said Mohler, whose book We Cannot Be Silent releases Oct. 27. “They know that when they open their mouth there will be rejoicing and mockery.”
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Among those directing the future of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary on the board of trustees are two men who also influence the direction of their states: Philip Gunn, speaker of the House of Representatives of Mississippi, and Scott Pruitt, attorney general of Oklahoma. With more than 20 combined years of experience in government, Gunn and Pruitt assert their profession is informed by their faith.
“My faith informs and shapes my political views, as it should inform and shape everything I do in life,” said Gunn, chairman of Southern Seminary’s board of trustees, which recently concluded its Oct. 12-13 meeting. “But as a Christian, I believe the main answer to our dilemma as fallen human beings is the gospel. It’s not politics, it’s not education, it’s not more money. The world will tell you that those things are the solution. And while I do think it’s important to be engaged in those roles, nevertheless I do believe the ultimate answer to all of our ills is the gospel and salvation through Christ.”
HAMLIN, Texas (SBTS) — Cowboys roam in middle-of-nowhere West Texas. Not the city-slicking “rhinestone” kind in Dallas, but cowboys riding on horseback and corralling cattle into a pen. In these small towns, community life is a picture of a bygone era in American culture, where pastors are well-respected and everyone’s life is on public display.
When he left Southern Seminary in 2012 to become the pastor of First Baptist Church, Hamlin, Texas, John Powell tried to corral his congregation like a cowboy into a pen of spiritual and theological maturity. But a period of despair fell upon Powell when he realized the loneliness of the pastoral calling and the reality that, in the breakneck pace of church ministry, “God didn’t call us cowboys; he called us shepherds.”
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (SBTS) — Trustees of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary received a report of record student enrollment for the recently concluded 2014-2015 academic year and record fall enrollment for the current academic year during their Oct. 12-13 fall meeting.
In other business, the Board of Trustees responded to a referral from the Southern Baptist Convention, designated a new professor to an academic chair, and approved faculty sabbaticals.
R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Seminary, summarized for trustees enrollment data for the past academic year and the fall 2015 semester, which are new records for the seminary.
Christian counselors should be able to speak lovingly and winsomely to people struggling with homosexual attraction, said evangelical leaders at the Oct. 5-7 homosexuality conference at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
The conference, titled “Homosexuality: Compassion, Care, and Counseling for Struggling People,” was sponsored by the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC).
“The integrity of our message is at stake in this, brothers and sisters. If we believe that the Bible teaches homosexuality to be a sin, and if we believe that Jesus Christ changes people, but we don’t know how to help them, then ... we will make a mockery of the Word of God,” said Heath Lambert, executive director of ACBC and associate professor of biblical counseling at Southern Seminary and Boyce College. “If we don’t know how to lay hold of the grace of Jesus, we will slander the Word of God and the grace of Jesus.”