The Five Objectives were adopted by messengers at the Summit in 2014 at Brentwood Baptist Church in Brentwood as long-range goals for the convention. [Read more…]
By Eric Atkins
Pastor, New Friendship Baptist Church, Cleveland
Several months ago our church received a certificate and letter from the International Mission Board congratulating us on reaching one of the four Lottie Moon Challenge Levels. New Friendship has received these certificates before so I wasn’t surprised to receive another one. This year, however, it is starting to feel much different. In the weeks since, news about the IMB’s Voluntary Retirement Incentive was released. Missionaries that are close to our church have faced the challenging decision of staying on, or retiring from the field. The immediate questions of “Pastor, what can we do?” sent us to our knees in prayer and God began to move our church to do even more in the area of giving. [Read more…]
NASHVILLE (BP) — Twenty-three state conventions voted to increase the portion of Cooperative Program receipts being forwarded to Southern Baptist Convention missions and ministries in the coming year, continuing a trend inspired by passage of the Great Commission Task Force recommendations five years ago. This year, Florida Baptists made the largest shift, moving from 41 to 51 percent allocated to SBC causes.
“This epic, pacesetting decision will set a precedent in the Southern Baptist Convention,” said Michael Tatem, president of Florida’s State Board of Missions. “We are doing what the Southern Baptist Convention was called to do in 1845 — to take the Gospel to the nations.” [Read more…]
Baptist and Reflector
The amount is $14,693 or 0.6 percent more than was given in the first month of the last fiscal year.
The total, however, is $575,443 or 20.16 percent below budget needs. [Read more…]
GREENFIELD, Tenn. (BP) — The men at Bethel Baptist Church reach out to the unchurched men in their community each autumn by showing off their culinary skills at a wild game supper, preparing turkey, deer, raccoon, crappie, catfish, rabbit, duck and other critters.
Meanwhile, the congregation’s Women on Mission excel each year at promoting missions, noted David Worley, pastor of Bethel Baptist in Greenfield, Tenn. In 2014, for example, with a goal of $19,630 for the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions, the church gave $26,896.
The church “believes strongly in missions,” Worley said. Bethel Baptist has given 20 percent to missions through the Cooperative Program for years, preceding and throughout Worley’s pastorate that began nine years ago. [Read more…]
By Randy C. Davis
TBC Executive Director
The world is in chaos. Wars rage. Terror perpetrated by evil people has nations on edge. Millions are displaced, and the debate over refugee resettlement is burning white hot. The world’s spiritual soil is as fertile as it ever has been and cries out for a broad spreading of gospel seeds. This world desperately needs Jesus.
Southern Baptists have historically rallied to the moment and responded to the call of Christ to go into the world and make disciples of all nations. However, I believe we as Southern Baptists stand at a crossroads. Either our action will be the substance that validates our calling, or it will be hollow “Great Commission” rhetoric with no action and it will expose the superficiality of our Christianity.
In other words, it is time to put our money where our mouth is. [Read more…]
NASHVILLE (BP) — Contributions to Southern Baptist national and international missions and ministries received by the SBC Executive Committee in October were 0.18 percent above last year’s opening month of the convention’s fiscal year and 3.26 percent above the projected budget for the first month, according to a news release from SBC Executive Committee President and Chief Executive Officer Frank Page.
As of Oct. 31, gifts received by the Executive Committee for distribution through the Cooperative Program Allocation Budget totaled $16,048,439.92, or $29,259.07 above the $16,019,180.85 received in October 2014.
“We are tremendously grateful that for the second year in a row Cooperative Program receipts received by the Executive Committee exceeded the previous October’s gifts and surpassed our projected budget goal for the first month of the fiscal year,” Page said. [Read more…]
Gives large gifts to Southern Baptist missions/ministries while building new facility
By Connie Davis Bushey
News Editor, Baptist and Reflector
GREENFIELD — Bethel Baptist Church here celebrated a momentus day on Oct. 18. The congregation began meeting in its new facility.
Church members did this with a clear conscience — they had continued their tradition of strong support for Southern Baptist missions and ministries while building the facility.
The new $3.5 million facility was built over the past couple of years, said David Worley, pastor.
During that period the only basic change in the financial situation and plan of the church was the increased total giving which was up from 2014 by 41 percent. Members were asked to help pay off the building debt so they gave designated gifts to the building fund which may have led to that increase, explained Worley. [Read more…]
By Ronnie Floyd
The Southern Baptist Convention is a convention of churches that partner together to reach the world for Christ. As we aspire to this biblical vision of presenting the gospel to every person in the world and to make disciples of all the nations, we must find a way to increase financial resources to this serious and grand vision.
I am often asked, “Where is the money to accomplish this vision?” In this month of emphasis on the Cooperative Program, I think we must answer this question openly and honestly. As one Southern Baptist, I want to attempt to answer the question, “Where is the money?”
The money is in the pockets of God’s people. The most recent research by empty tomb, inc., reveals the following:
- Less than 3 percent of all Christians tithe, meaning give at least 10 percent of their income to their church.
- The median annual gift to a church is $200.
- In 1968, Americans gave 3.1 percent of their disposable income; now Americans give 2.2 percent, which is less than they gave during the Great Depression.
- At the current rate of decline, by the year 2050, Americans will give only 1 percent of their disposable income to the church; if this occurs, a vast number of churches and missions will be forced to close. I find this data somewhat disgusting. It shows the selfishness and narcissistic reality of millions of professing Christians today.
The money to reach our towns, cities, regions, states, nation, and the world is in the pockets of God’s people. We need to repent now and call people back to God with boldness and compassion.
Pastors, Christian leaders, and church leaders must lead the way in giving at least 10 percent of their income through their local churches. The professing Christians and members of our churches must also do the same.
Money is in the pockets of our churches. Each of our churches must evaluate continually what we are doing to partner with our Southern Baptist Convention in reaching the world for Christ. We do this through our gifts through the Cooperative Program. How much a church gives through the Cooperative Program is a church’s decision. Each church is autonomous and we honor their decision. [Read more…]
By Roc Collins
Pastor in Kingsport
As followers of Christ we have been called to “Go and Make Disciples.” What a great task is ours!
There is no one person who can fulfill that mission alone. God, in His infinite wisdom, has granted us the opportunity to fulfill the Great Commission by working together. Certainly we can get together to participate in ministry but there is another way.
We can give through the Cooperative Program (CP). As we give through the CP we are giving fuel to fulfill the Great Commission. The whole purpose of our giving is to point people to Jesus Christ. [Read more…]