Wednesday, December 21, 2016Download All Stories
WRAP-UP: Over half states boost CP sending to SBC causesNASHVILLE (BP) -- Ohio Baptists approved the largest increase in the portion of Cooperative Program receipts sent beyond the state next year, moving from the current 59.75/40.25 ratio to a 50/50 split. "Supporting missions from Ohio to the ends of the earth is the heartbeat of Ohio Southern Baptists," said Ohio Executive Director Jack Kwok in praising the decision.
The State Convention of Baptists in Ohio (SCBO) joins four other conventions that forward half or more to the Southern Baptist Convention, without a "shared ministry" calculation, including the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention (55/45), Florida (51/49), Iowa (50/50) and Nevada (50/50). Read More
Retired pastors, widows thankful for Mission:DignityDALLAS (BP) -- Hard work was nothing new for bivocational pastor L.C. Jones. After decades of laboring in sewing factories, he was accustomed to sweating it out for the sake of his family.
"I've worked all summer -- mowing yards, trying to save enough money to fix my wife's teeth," he said. "I plan to work next summer to finish paying for her teeth."
The blazing Texas heat wasn't going to hold him back from earning enough so that Jerry could get her teeth, even though the retired pastor was then 86 years old. That was in 2012. Read More
Religious liberty priority in state conv. resolutionsNASHVILLE (BP) -- Values-driven voting and defense of religious liberty were topics frequently addressed in annual meetings of state Baptist conventions this year as messengers voiced their concerns in resolutions.
Nevada Baptists encouraged churches -- as led by their pastors -- to "engage in the political process by researching the candidates and ballot questions," helping their members vote "to reflect Biblical values in the upcoming election." Read More
First Gateway Seminary grads honoredONTARIO, Calif. (BP) -- Relatives and friends celebrated with Gateway Seminary's first graduating class on Dec. 17 in the chapel of the new Los Angeles-area campus.
Thirty graduates received degrees, including 16 doctoral students. The seminary dedicated its new main campus in Ontario, Calif., in October.
Jeff Iorg, president of Gateway Seminary of the Southern Baptist Convention, reminded graduates that God chose to use some unexpected people in the Bible such as David, who is included in Jesus' genealogy in Matthew chapter one. Read More
SWBTS grads urged to be characterized by obedienceFORT WORTH, Texas (BP) -- Paige Patterson urged graduates of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary to continually strive for integrity and to respond in obedience to God's call in ministry.
"All across America, students are graduating from colleges and universities, and the one thing most of them will not be told is to be men and women of integrity," Patterson, president of Southwestern, told graduates during the seminary's fall commencement on Dec. 16. A total of 169 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral students graduated. Read More
Open letter: cooperation needed amid SBC tensionsNASHVILLE (BP) -- Controversy surrounding ethicist Russell Moore's past comments on President-elect Donald Trump has led three Tennessee Baptists -- all under the age of 40 -- to issue an open letter calling "the [conservative] resurgence generation and their protégés" to "be the statesmen we need them to be in this season of denominational tension."
Jonathan Akin, Nathan Finn and Micah Fries wrote in a Dec. 21 open letter provided to Baptist Press, "Now isn't the time for acrimonious debates over secondary and tertiary doctrinal matters," such as the extent of the atonement, church polity, methodology and the appropriate means of cultural engagement. Read More
FIRST-PERSON: Keep the Christmas spirit
The "spirit of Christmas" is just not a once-a-year event, Diana Davis writes. "It's a Christian's lifestyle and mission," she notes, calling believers to reflect "the true Christmas spirit -- God's Spirit -- as you live with joy, expectancy, love and generosity." Read More