More News Stories
Sep 15, 2014
All too often at the Monday morning pastor’s conference, one man confides to a friend, “Man, if the Lord opens up a new ministry somewhere, I would welcome a recommendation. The church I am serving is not interested in growing. I need a change.” At the back of our minds is the image of an ideal church in which excitement fills the air. Yet, the Bible at no point commands us to grow a bigger church, choir or anything else. The Great Commission motivated the apostles because Jesus said, “And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come” (Matt. 24:14). Whatever it took to bring Him back, they would do. They scattered to the ends of the earth. That should be our motivating commitment, but in the meanwhile, what should be our spiritual goal for the church that we serve? The Bible makes that work abundantly clear.
Sep 15, 2014
Medieval theologian Anselm wrote the first theology exploring the reason that Jesus became God incarnate—the God-Man. Anselm wrote that humans owed a debt to God that they were incapable of paying. The debt was so great only God could pay the debt, yet as the debtors, by necessity, humans must pay the debt. The Son of God became a man for two reasons. As God, He possessed the ability to pay the debt. As Man, He could rightfully pay the debt. Approximately 1,000 years before Anselm, the author of Hebrews set forth a biblical answer to the question, “Why did the Son of God become a human being?” Hebrews 2:9-18 details six answers to the question, “Why did the Son of God become a man?
Sep 14, 2014
Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church, one of the largest African-American Baptist churches in Jacksonville, is in the process of partnering with the predominantly Anglo Ridgewood Baptist Church in Orange Park.
If all goes according to plan, the two congregations will become one church with multiple locations sometime next year.
Sep 14, 2014
OCALA (FBW)—Highlands Baptist Church and Wellspring Church, located less than a mile from each other in the Central Florida town of Ocala, merged on Sept. 7.
Following a six-month-long “Church Unique” revitalization program, Highlands Pastor Chris Gilliam felt inspired to join forces with Wellspring in order to get back to what he felt was the church’s original calling. After unanimous votes by both churches, the merger was confirmed on Aug. 17 after the Highlands’ vote.
Sep 11, 2014
One-time announcements are provided free by the Witness to Florida Baptist churches. Please e-mail materials at least three weeks before the date of the event to floridafocus@goFBW.com. Information may also be mailed to Florida Baptist Witness, 1230 Hendricks Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32207.
Sep 11, 2014
Florida Baptists were among the thousands who voted in primary elections Aug. 26. Some of the voters may have met the candidates and questioned them in events at their churches, and some may have read the candidates’ opinions on issues in voter guides that were distributed at one of the state’s 3,000 churches.
However, most Florida Baptist churches shy away from election-year involvement because of fear of lawsuits or losing their tax-exempt status. Their fears are unfounded, according to Bill Bunkley, president of the Florida Ethics and Religious Commission and a representative of the Florida Baptist Convention during legislative sessions in Tallahassee for the past 19 years.
Sep 9, 2014
In reading through the epistles, we notice an absence of emphasis on signs and wonders as gifts or functions within the churches. Peter said Jesus performed signs and wonders as indicating His approval by God (Acts 2:22). Following Pentecost, the apostles performed signs and wonders (Acts 2:43). Several other passages affirm the apostles exercised those gifts (Acts 5:12, 6:2, 7:36, 15:12). Paul also performed signs and wonders (Romans 15:19). As Hebrews 2:2-4 explains, God bestowed the power to confirm them who heard him (v. 3). Jesus also warned that merely claiming the power to prophesy in His name, cast out devils and perform wonderful works will gain no favor at the judgment (Matt. 7:21, 22). The only criterion is whether or not one has been born again. We now look at some doctrines that are more relevant for experiencing peace and fellowship.
Sep 9, 2014
My wife can attest to my problems related to hearing. I admit I have three hearing problems. First, I likely experience difficulty hearing because I listened to loud music earlier in my life. Second, I possess great skills at selective hearing. I hear what I choose to hear. Third, at times, I have difficulty remembering what I hear.
Sep 8, 2014
S. Truett Cathy, founder of the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain famous for closing on Sundays, died Sept. 8. He was 93.
Sep 6, 2014
50-50 CP division expected to be reached by 2017
JACKSONVILLE (FLBaptist)—As Florida Baptists advance toward the goal of sending 50 percent of the state’s Cooperative Program receipts to the Southern Baptist Convention, a proposed $28.8 million budget for 2015 that increases the SBC percentage to 45 percent and decreases the Florida Baptist Convention’s percentage to 55 percent was approved by the State Board of Missions’ Budget-Allocations Committee.
With the planned increased percentage to SBC causes, the Florida Baptist Convention expects to reach the 50-50 percentage division of CP funds by 2017, a year earlier than originally planned.