DALLAS — “Testify! Go. Stand. Speak.” will be the theme for the 2018 Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting June 12-13 at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, SBC President Steve Gaines has announced.
Evangelism is the urgency of the theme anchored in Acts 5:20, Gaines, pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church Cordova, told Baptist Press Jan. 17.
“Fulfilling the Great Commission has always been at the heart of who Southern Baptists are,” Gaines said. “However, as research from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary President Chuck Kelley has shown, our baptisms are the lowest we have seen in 70 years. If we want to see that trend turn around, we must refocus our efforts on evangelism, telling a lost world about the hope that is found only in Jesus Christ.”
To accomplish the goal, Gaines said, Southern Baptists must be willing to go where God commands, to stand for gospel truth amid conflicting cultural trends and to audibly speak the gospel to the world.
Attending the meeting will offer spiritual and practical benefits, said Gaines, who completes his second year as SBC president in June.
“As we meet we will conduct business and hear from each of our entities, but most importantly we are going to come together to cry out to the Lord,” Gaines said. “Our country needs a spiritual awakening, and if we humble ourselves, pray, seek His face, and turn from our sins, God will hear us and will forgive our sin and heal our land.”