Tomorrow we will begin back with regular posts and podcasts, this will include either a podcast interview with Acts29 Pastor Aaron Coe or the 2nd part of the interview with Reid and Liederbach.
“Baptist 21 seeks to 1) express appreciation for the godly men and women who have ministered before us, 2) engage the world with the gospel in the present, and 3) cast a vision for continued Southern Baptist witness in the 21st century and beyond. We pray this vision will compel Baptists, especially younger Baptists, to cooperate together in the Great Mission our King has given to us.”
Reminder of Who We Are:
What does the future hold for baptist21?
We are going to begin a vision series that will capture our outlook for the 21st century church and SBC. Through this series, we will focus on the motivations that led us to starting baptist21, such as mission, church planting, cooperation, missional networks, the church, and the gospel. In this series, we will write about the distinctives that make us Baptist, the non-negotiables that we must hold to cooperate together, future strategies that will enable the churches of the SBC to be on mission with God, and a look at the benefits of cooperation.
New Things to Consider from the Site:
Popular Past Blogs:
Thank you baptist21 community for being patient with us during this transition that ran into a bunch of speed bumps. We want to say “Thank You” to a whole host of people that made this transition possible: Micah Fries (blogger and designer and pastor), Ryan Hutchinson, Jonathan McDill, Courtney Navey, and Alyson Dresner. We are grateful for your help and are indebted to you.
contact us with thoughts or questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Baptist 21 is excited about the upcoming Acts 29 Boot Camp in Raleigh, NC and would like to encourage anyone interested in church planting or church revitalization to attend. It will be Wednesday February 4th through Friday February 6th at Vintage 21 Church in Raleigh.
Acts 29 is a network of churches that “exists to start churches that plant churches.” Acts 29 is doing this extremely well and has a success rate that is unheard of! They want to plant 1,000 churches in the next 20 years by partnering with men who desire to plant churches and making their dreams come true.
The Acts 29 Boot Camp is one of the best places, if not the best, to receive training in church planting. It is required for all those who would plant in cooperation with Acts 29, but the event is open to anyone who would like to come. If you are at all interested in church planting and wonder what it will take and if you are ready, then make it a priority to be at the Boot Camp.
This event features a great lineup of leaders, pastors, and planters like: Mark Driscoll, Wayne Grudem, Danny Akin, Scott Thomas, Andreas Kostenberger, Tyler Jones, Daniel Montgomery, and many more. They will be speaking on a wide range of topics like: “Gospel Centered Reformed Theology,” “Preaching the Gospel,” “The Affects of Planting on Family and Self,” “Mission” in regards to community and discipleship, and Question and Answer sessions with men like Mark Driscoll and Wayne Grudem.
Vintage 21 is an Acts 29 plant in Raleigh and has hosted a Boot Camp before. In 2007 they had over 350 church planters attend the Boot Camp. It is the hope of Vintage 21, Acts 29, and Baptist 21 that this event will be used by King Jesus to further the mission of church planting in North America and beyond. This event is an incredible opportunity that you do not want to miss!
Baptist21 had the honor of sitting down with Dr. Mark Liederbach and Dr. Alvin Reid to discuss their new book “The Convergent Church.”Dr. Mark Liederbach, a man who grew up Roman Catholic, is an ethics professor at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary who received degrees from James Madison University, Denver Seminary, and a Ph.D from the University of Virginia. He is a student favorite on campus known for spending time on the basketball court with students as well as for his engaging classes. Dr. Alvin Reid is a well-known author and blogger. He is a professor of evangelism at Southeastern and a student favorite. He is known for spending more time with students than colleagues. He has grown up most of his life as a Southern Baptist. So, in these two men you have the unique perspective of a nearly lifelong Southern Baptist and in Liederbach a man who only recently became a part of this denomination of faith. These men were gracious enough to sit down with us.
A brief description of the book: “Countless followers of Christ find themselves restless. They wonder if there is more to Christian faith than compulsory church attendance and rigid moral standards, and they wander in search of what they hope will be a better form of Christianity—if such a thing exists. The Convergent Church brings together conventional Christianity and the emergent church, moving beyond the antipathy that has developed between the groups and urging Christians to honestly consider the best that each has to offer.”
Book Endorsements: “The Convergent Church tells us where we are, explains how we got here, and offers a vision for where we need to go. Biblically and theologically faithful, culturally and missionally relevant, this is a must read for those who care about the church of the Lord Jesus in the twenty-first century.”—Daniel L. Akin President of the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
“The spiritual landscape of our world is changing; tens of thousands of people leave the church and thousands of churches close their doors every year. For the sake of the gospel and for the honor of Jesus we must refocus our hearts, retool the local church, and recharge followers of Jesus to accomplish the Great Commission. The Convergent Church does just that. This book is essential for the seminarian, the barista at Starbucks, the computer programmer at IBM, and everyone in between.”—Tyler Jones Pastor of Preaching atVintage21 Church
Questions they address in part one of this interview:
0.What prompted and motivated you to write this book? What is convergence?
0.What effect do you hope this book will have on the church at large? And more specifically for the purpose of our site, how will it help us be Baptist in the 21st century and what does the SBC most need to hear from this book?
0.You break down several streams of the Emerging Church. What are some of the “dangers” in the emergent church? What are the best characteristics of that movement? What are some of the “dangers’ in the traditional evangelical church? What are the best characteristics of that movement?
0.Some critics may say “Doesn’t the Bible spend a lot of time saying that we should be separate from our culture not influenced by it?” How would you answer this critique? How should pastors communicate to traditional congregations that relevance doesn’t mean accommodation?
I was blessed to be able to read an early manuscript of this book and I found that I was very engaged in what they were writing. I was reading this manuscript as we were starting up this blog and I found myself thinking a lot of what they are saying in here is exactly the kind of things we want to dialogue about and explore on Baptist21. Part of our purpose is “Baptist 21 is grateful for a Southern Baptist heritage where the Gospel has been faithfully passed down and effective Great Commission ministry has been undertaken. Many believe there is a crisis ahead for Baptists, particularly Southern Baptists, in the 21st century. Our commitment is to work diligently in the present by honoring the Gospel faithfulness of the past, contending for the Gospel, engaging current cultures with the Gospel, and cooperating toward future Kingdom effectiveness among Southern Baptists in the 21st century and beyond.” I believe that this book helps us do such a thing. I recommend picking this book up and reading. Please help us begin a conversation about how we can be a group of convergent churches that are on Mission with our King in the 21st century.
Some of the Questions to be answered in part 2: How does your book address the question of whether there ought to be an emphasis on Evangelism as opposed to the Social Gospel or Mercy Ministries? How do we combine mercy ministries and passionate, bold proclamation? What is the difference between traditional Evangelism and Convergent Evangelism, and why is the distinction important to know? What does a covergent idea of discipleship offer as opposed to the more conventional ways of doing discipleship? How would you transition a church from being more conventional to being missional/
N.A. and B.W.
Recently I read Dr. Mark Dever’s “Nine Marks of a Healthy Church.” I hope to provide a brief summary of each mark that Pastor Dever sees as vital for the healthy church and then think through practical ways to make this mark a reality in our churches. I hope that you will join the conversation as we think through healthy Baptist churches in the 21st Century.
Mark One: Expositional Preaching
With the close of his life coming quickly, the apostle Paul exhorted Timothy that his ministry be marked by one thing above all others, “preach the Word.” Pastor Dever sees this mark of the church as the most vital, understanding that if we get this one right the others will follow. Essential to the health of the church is the expounding of the “Word of God.” Dever points out that God always uses his word to create a people for himself. Dever says that expositional preaching is “preaching which takes for the point of a sermon the point of a particular passage of Scripture. That’s it” (40). In addition, he makes clear that if a pastor does not preach expositionally he will never preach more than he knew at the beginning of his preaching life. Scripture is clear that we are “dead” men walking and yet only through the hearing of the Word can we be made alive. Is there anything more important than this? Next, the word is the food that conforms us to the image of Christ. Therefore, if we want to see real change in the lives of those around us we must not be so arrogant as to think it can come from our “words”, instead we must be confident that God has spoken and only through his word can people be radically transformed. Therefore, if we really want to see something great happen in our day, the exhortation of the Apostle cannot be improved upon, “Preach the Word.”
How to Practically Implement this Mark in your Church:
First, seek out other pastors and preachers that do this well. There are many good ones to check out in this area. Men like John MacArthur, John Piper, Allister Begg, Mark Driscoll, David Platt, and James Merritt are excellent expositors to check out. Also, Dr. Mohler’s Powerline, Danny Akin’s website, and Russell Moore’s Podcast are excellent resources for the pastor who wants to improve as an expositor. Listen to these men, read their transcripts, and seek to work through verses of the scriptures the way these men do. Second, a preacher seeking to be a better expositor could attend one of the six SBC seminaries, the Olford Institute, or a plethora of conferences given throughout the year. In addition, preachers can read books like Ramesh Richards “Preparing Expository Sermons”, Haddon Robinson’s classic “Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Sermons”, or consult Calvin’s Commentaries to improve as an expositor of God’s Word. Finally, and most importantly, you must see the vital nature of this mark of the church. If we want to see renewed evangelism, discipleship, mission, etc. then it will come from right knowledge and action shaped by God’s Word working in our lives. This is a call to teach the Word and allow IT to mold and break the lives of our people. The call of the Apostle still rings true, “Preach the Word.”
I would love to hear from you. How would you go about making this a staple of your church? And does it really matter?
Make sure to read Dever’s “Nine Marks of a Healthy Church“, it is an invaluable tool for ministry.
February 6-7, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary will be hosting its annual 20/20 conference. This year’s conference is entitled “The Gospel Comes to Life.” The highlighted speakers for this event are Mark Driscoll, C.J. Mahaney, and Danny Akin. Here are some highlights from last year’s 20/20 to give you a feel for the impact of this event.
A description of this year’s event from the website:
The Gospel is powerful and relevant for absolutely everything we think or do. Its relevance is not limited to the four walls of a church building, but extends to every square inch of the fabric of human existence, to every dimension of human culture, and to every intellectual and social endeavor of mankind.
It is relevant not only to our private devotions, but to our college classes and our future vocations. It matters not only during Sunday morning worship, but also during coffee shop conversations, movie viewings, and political conversations. Come and see how everything we do and think matters to God and how, when we discover this, the gospel really comes to life.
Also, on Feburary 16 Southeastern will be hosting a one day “Great Commission Resurgence” conference.
This will be an evangelism conference that will feature speakers such as: David Platt, Danny Akin, Robert Smith, Bruce Ashford, Chuck Lawless, and Ed Stetzer. Music will be led by Jeff Capps. This also should be an exciting event, and I personally and am looking forward to hearing David Platt and Robert Smith preach in person.
Both of these events fit heavily into the Baptist21 purpose:
“We believe the Gospel is relevant to every man and woman in every culture, as it calls all to repentance of sin and faith in Jesus. Our goal is to bring the gospel to bear on contemporary issues in the church and the world. This will mean engaging culture, using culture, rebuking culture and redeeming culture. Believing that Jesus is the only way to the Father (Jn 14:6), we pray that everything that is done here would ultimately be useful for the exalting of King Jesus so that He might gather all the peoples of the earth into His body, the Church” (From the Purpose Statement).
It is our hope that you will make it to these events and learn from these men about bringing the gospel to bear on every dimension of life and how we as baptist in the 21st century can seek a Great Commission Resurgence.
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