Monday, June 27, 2011

Community Baptism: Part 1

On Sunday, July 17 at 10:00 am, the church where I pastor, Cornerstone Community Church, will be doing a community baptism. What is a community baptism? In our concept, it is a time when we open up Christian baptism to anyone in our community who believes in Christ and wants to be baptized.

We will be advertising our community baptism on Time Warner Cable channels which will reach about 200,000 people. Our TV commercial is scheduled to begin running for two weeks on the Saturday after July 4th until the Saturday prior to the day of our event on July 17. Please pray that many new converts will be baptized on July 17. Here's the 30 second TV spot that will run.

In my next installment, I will explain why we have decided to hold this event and why we believe it is completely biblical.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Calvinist No More: Part 2

A few weeks ago, I penned a blog post entitled, "Calvinist No More." In this post, I provided an overview of my journey into Calvinism and back to non-Calvinism. My post seems to have generated quite a bit of interest in both Calvinist and non-Calvinist circles. This post has become my number one all-time read post since I began blogging in 2006.

I thought I had said everything I wanted to say about this topic until some people whom I greatly respect, asked me if I would write regarding what it was about my Southern Baptist roots that drew me away from Calvinism. Their question was in reference to the last two sentences in my previous post, in which I stated,

God has led me safely through my journey in Calvinism back to my Southern Baptist roots with a greater appreciation for His sovereignty and glory. It's good to be home.
So what is it that drew me back to Southern Baptist roots and away from Calvinism? Evangelism and missions.

Please understand what I am not saying. I am not saying that Calvinists are not interested in evangelism and missions. The Calvinist baptists that I know are dedicated to reaching the lost for Christ. They are missions-minded and missions-active. But somehow, it is different from my Southern Baptist roots.

Others may place more emphasis on ecclesiology, worship, social ministry, etc., but nobody does evangelism and missions better than Southern Baptists. I missed being around Southern Baptists who were passionate to reach the lost. I missed being around Southern Baptists who were constantly seeking ways to tell someone else about Jesus. I missed being around Southern Baptists whose main goal is evangelism and missions above everything else.

The priority of Southern Baptists is, first and foremost, to reach sinners for Christ. Our overarching goal is to go into the highways and byways, rescue the perishing, and throw out the lifeline of Jesus Christ to the spiritually dead and dying. Southern Baptists are heralds of eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Our deepest desire is to sound the clarion call of forgiveness of sin through the cross of Christ. Our fondest fervor is to tell the old, old, story of the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus. Our greatest delight is the glory of God on display when a lost soul turns away from sin and turns to Jesus.  Our most joyful celebration is when the new believer enters the baptismal waters in obedience to the command of Christ, as a public testimony of becoming a new creation through Christ and walking in newness of life.

This is what I have missed. This is the home to which I have returned.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Amazing Missionary Life

This is a video we played last Sunday for our "Missions Moment." It is very inspirational, especially if the work in your ministry seems to be slow.