Association Workshop

WHAT? Associational Workshop

WHERE? South Harriman Baptist Church

WHEN? April 17th (Supper at 6 p.m. Classes begin at 6:30 p.m.) PLEASE RSVP for the meal by April 13th by calling the association office 865.882.6446

WHY? To help us be better disciples and reach more people for Christ.

Specialists from the Tennessee Baptist Convention will lead the classes:

Pastors – “Jack of All Trades, Master of Some: The Pastor as Generalist” – Steve Holt
Deacons – “Nurturing the Spiritual Health of the Church” – Bill Choate
Music Ministers – “Leading Worship Music with Confidence” – Paul Clark
Youth Ministers – “Equipping Youth Leaders to stand Strong!” – Bruce Edwards
Children’s Ministry – “Equipping U for Teaching Your Best” – Vicki Hulsey
Treasurers – “Financial Issues Facing Churches and Ministers” – Richard Skidmore
Church Clerks/Secretaries – “Church Records 101” – Lana Rose
Ministries for Women – “Involving Women in Missions and Ministry” – Denise Bronaugh
Ministries for Men – “Involving Men in Missions and Ministry” – Gene Williams

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The Return of Church Discipline

I’ve made mention a number of times the sad fact that Church discipline is disregarded in many places and congregations these days. So, I was glad to see in Baptist Press this story, which says, in part

Increasing numbers of Southern Baptists are claiming that church discipline is not merely a relic of the past. Some churches have instituted a process drawn from Scripture of correcting and, if need be, eventually dismissing unrepentant members for public sins. The ultimate goal of the discipline process is repentance and restoration of sinners, the churches say, citing Baptists of past centuries as examples of how church discipline can benefit individuals and churches.

Good! And the essay has it just right when it concludes

“Get people to understand that our goal is always restoration,” York said. “Our goal isn’t a clean church role. Our goal is restoration. Get them to buy into that concept. Then I think you can really bring them on board.”

I’m not too keen on the notion of getting folk to “buy into” something- because Church discipline isn’t something that needs to be “sold”. It simply needs to be practiced according to the model set forth in Matthew 18.

I sincerely hope that this trend continues, widens, spreads, and becomes all pervasive- not only in Southern Baptist Churches but in every Christian Church.

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events 

April 1st -4th:  Revival!   Please join us in praying that God will open the windows of heaven and pour revival into our hearts and into our community.

Sunday, April 8th:  is Easter Sunday.  Our sunrise service will be at 6:30.

May 3rd– At 7 pm join us in the Sanctuary for the National Day of Prayer.  We will read a brief Scripture together and then spend time in prayer for our Community, County, State, Nation, and World.

May 13thMother’s Day!

May 27thHomecoming!!!!

What Tennessee Baptists Can Learn From North Carolina

The News and Observer, of Raleigh, North Carolina, has a grand essay about the separation of five Baptist schools from the State Convention of North Carolina. The amicable way the separation is taking place could teach Tennessee Baptists a thing or two about how Christians behave under somewhat trying circumstances.

The News and Observer reports, in part,

According to a plan approved by the convention’s executive committee, the colleges and universities would be allowed to start choosing their own trustees in 2009. Meanwhile, the state convention, which gives each school about $1.2 million a year, will begin phasing out its monetary contributions, eliminating them altogether by 2013.

And

“They’re working with us in a gracious way that seems to be effective,” said the Rev. Allan Blume, a Boone pastor and president of the convention’s executive committee. “They want to have a different kind of relationship. I think it can be very successful.” The executive committee unanimously agreed to the colleges’ proposal earlier this month.

It would be grand if the leadership of the Tennessee Baptist Convention could explain why this procedure hasn’t been followed here in Tennessee. Anyway, kudos to the good people of North Carolina for behaving as Baptists should behave.

How You Raise Your Children Affects Everyone

Sometimes people imagine that how they raise their kids is no one’s business but their own.  And if you say anything to them about it they become quite offended, as though their children’s behavior has no impact on anyone else in the world.

But of course that is absurd.  If parents raise their children in an environment of drugs, then when those children grow up and become a burden on society (as welfare recipients or recipients of social security income because they aren’t able to work) it most certainly is everyone’s problem.

If parents raise their children to be disrespectful of others persons and property, then when those children commit crimes like vandalism then it most certainly affects others.

If parents raise their children without God, then that too most certainly impacts the wider community.  Godless parents raising Godless children, children without guidance, boundaries, discipline, or self respect, become, in the long run, detrimental to society as a whole, participating in evils which break down families and communities.

But when parents raise respectful, disciplined, faithful children, the whole of society benefits.

How you raise your children affects everyone.  If you don’t believe it, drive up to the prison.

Aiding Sin And Abetting Sinners

An interesting question was posed me today: is it right to help people sin?  And if you do, does that make you sin too?

The short answer is, no to the first and yes to the second.  Is it right to help people sin?  No.  For example, if someone is going to steal something from the store, and you know about it before they do it, but you give them your car keys so they can get to the store, then you have helped them sin.  Similarly, if you provide them with gas or you help them in any way to do the evil they plan, then you have helped them sin.

So, naturally, if you help others sin, then you too have sinned.  Let’s say that your son or daughter is about to go egg a house at Halloween and you give them the money to buy eggs or the eggs themselves, then you are a partner in their sin and thereby become as sinful as they.

In other words, when you help someone to do something wrong, you’ve done wrong too.  If little Nancy is on her way to make life miserable for the town, and you fill her tank with gas, you have a part in terrorizing the town too.  And God will hold you as accountable as he does little Nancy.

News From Big Emory Baptist Association

Upcoming Events:

April 4 – Minister’s Conference, 11 a.m. at Ryan’s in Oak Ridge. Speaker: Rev. Paul Frick
April 5 – Prayer Team Meeting, 1 p.m. at the BEBA Office
April 5 – Rebuild Ministry Team Meeting, 7 p.m. at the BEBA Office
April 6 – Good Friday Holiday! BEBA Office Closed
April 8 – Easter Sunday!
April 9 – Executive Board Meeting, 10:30 a.m. at South Harriman Baptist Church
April 9 – Vacation Bible School Clinic, FBC in Wartburg. Dinner – 5 p.m. Worship Rally 6 p.m.
April 10 – Quarterly Deacon’s Meeting, 7 p.m. Calvary Baptist Church in Wartburg
April 15 – Children’s Bible Drill, 2 p.m. at South Harriman Baptist Church
April 17 – BEBA Workshop, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at South Harriman Baptist Church
April 28 – Vacation Bible School Clinic, Beech Park Baptist Church, Oliver Springs – 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Prayer Requests:

Please pray for the following churches as they seek a pastor: Big Emory, Chapman Grove, Clymersville, Coal Hill, Dyllis, Kellytown, Kingston First, Mossy Grove, New Height’s Mission, Pine Ridge, Riggs Chapel.

Thought of the Day

“Membership badges without loyalty and obedience are of no value.  Attachment to the Church without discipleship is the husk without the kernel.”  — Emil Brunner.  What Brunner meant by this is that people who call themselves Church members, but who live at odds with the call of discipleship, are simply pretending and are not the real thing.  Are you the real thing?  Or a husk?

The Cost of Discipleship…

In China, being a Christian can become a costly experience. Witness the case of Ms. Li Huage, who was arrested and sentenced to ten days for allegedly “disturbing public order.” for being a Christian. The report continues

She is now detained in Ying An Lu Detention Center, Wancheng district, Nanyang city, Henan province. Her husband, pastor Dong Quanyu was released March 16 after serving a ten day sentence for an “illegal religious gathering.” “Ms. Li was beaten heavily by the PSB officers on March 16 outside the detention center before she met with her released husband,” CAA says in a report obtained by ANS.

It boggles the imagination, doesn’t it, to consider how many American “Christians” would endure such things simply in order to attend Church. Most American Christians would rather sleep in on Sunday than make their way to the House of God. Maybe that’s why Christianity in America is waning and Christianity in China is growing.

The cost of discipleship is high in China. And low in America. And if somethings cheap we all know no one wants it.

Preparing For Revival

Randy Roper will be our evangelist for Revival April 1-4.  Special music is also planned for each service and you are urged to invite your friends, family, and neighbors to attend.

All of this is well enough known now to those who attend with some regularity (since we’ve been announcing it for weeks).  But in order to really prepare for revival you are urged to do the following:

1- Humble yourself.  It takes a bit of humility to say yes to God and no to yourself.  So humble yourself and say no to all of the events, plans, and activities which will crop up and claim your attention during the period of Revival.  Humble yourself and get off the couch or the bench and make your way to worship.  And bring along your kids and your parents.  Humble yourself and stop making excuses as to why you can’t participate.  Humble yourself, and pray for someone other than your own family or for physical illness alone.  Which takes us to the second point of preparation.

2- Pray, and seek God’s presence.  Instead of expecting God to do your will, pray that you might do God’s will.  Seek him instead of expecting him to come trotting after you.  Church members who have to be invited to participate in the life of their own Church are simply incomprehensible.  Not a single person has to be “invited” to work by their boss.  Imagine for just a moment that your boss had to call each of his employees in order to invite them to work and then imagine how ridiculous it is that God has to invite his own children to worship him.  Seek God, if you really want revival.  And

3- Turn from your wicked ways.  If you are shacking up, stop it.  If you are acting immorally, stop it.  If you are promiscuous, stop it.  If you are a thief, stop stealing.  If you are a liar, stop lying.  Stop doing what’s wrong!  Genuine revival doesn’t come into hearts that are corrupt and which have no intention of repenting.

God will send revival when his people, those called by his name, humble themselves, pray, and turn from their wicked ways.  If they do not, revival will not come.

So the real question is, how many people in our community really desire revival to come?  How many are seeking God?  How many are praying?  How many are turning from their wickedness?  How many are willing to?  The answers to those questions will show whether or not we really desire revival.

Put It On Your Calendar

May 3rd– At 7 pm join us in the Sanctuary for the National Day of Prayer.  We will read a brief Scripture together and then spend time in prayer for our Community, County, State, Nation, and World.

Thought of the Day

Of course there are hypocrites in the church, but I would like to know how that is an excuse for your trampling under foot the Son of God. The fact that another man is a hypocrite is no reason why you should trample under foot the Son of God, God’s own Son, Jesus Christ.   — R.A. Torrey

An Act of Kindness

Betty P.’s roof was damaged last week in the storm, some of the shingles blew off and water damaged the ceiling in her kitchen.  Some of our guys got together and repaired it.  Here they are.

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