September 2013

Total Church Life Leadership Conference draws large crowd

Louisiana Baptist Convention Executive Director David Hankins told 600 attending the Total Church Life Leadership Conference held at First Baptist in Baton Rouge on Aug. 24, they must do what Jesus told Simon in Luke chapter 5 and launch out into the deep.

By Mark H. Hunter, Regional Reporter

BATON ROUGE – Let’s reach Louisiana with the gospel, proclaimed Dr. David Hankins, to 600 area Baptists gathered at First Baptist in Baton Rouge for the “Total Church Life Leadership Conference,” held on Saturday, Aug. 24.

“We were right at 600,” said Rev. Tommy Middleton, director of missions for the Baptist Association of Greater Baton Rouge, one of the event’s sponsors. That total included more than 500 participants, 35 seminar presenters and dozens of First Baptist  volunteers. “We’re very pleased with the turnout.”


‘The Hub’ supported by GBO, churches

Logo for The Hub

By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer

SHREVEPORT – For six months, God kept asking Cassie Hammett if she would accept the call to stand up for women involved in prostitution.

And for six months she continued to deny the challenge.

Then, one morning during her personal Bible study time at a Starbucks coffee shop, Hammett said God asked her for what she believed would be one last time – and she finally said yes.


What America needs desperately – prophets

By Kelly Boggs, Message Editor

Martin Luther King Jr.’s prophetic oratory during the March on Washington brought a searing indictment against a nation that had not only failed its founding principles but had ignored God’s righteous expectation.

King minced no words on that hot, humid day. With the Lincoln Memorial as a backdrop, he succinctly and bluntly identified as sin the societal segregation and institutional discrimination practiced and tolerated throughout America.


The state has no authority concerning the Imago Dei

By Andrew T. Walker, Director of Policy Studies at ERLC

The practice of reparative therapy, or what’s also called “gay conversion therapy,” has long stirred conflicting viewpoints about whether changing one’s sexual desire is possible or whether such attempts are in the best interest of same-sex-attracted individuals.

Differences aside, there are legitimate concerns about the bill Gov. Christie now has signed to ban reparative therapy in New Jersey.

The implications for religious liberty are sufficiently problematic on their own to warrant Christian concern.


With Badon’s retirement, Corley becomes new church planting strategist

Larry Badon and Lane Corley

By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer

ALEXANDRIA –A new chapter is beginning while another is coming to a close for church planting leadership in the state.

Church planter Lane Corley has come on board as the new church planting strategist for the Louisiana Baptist Convention while Larry Badon is retiring from the same position.

Corley joined the LBC staff on Sept. 3 while Badon is stepping aside on Sept. 30.


School clerk credits God with preventing a shootout

By Staff, World News Magazine

ATLANTA, Ga. – On Tuesday, Aug. 20, Antoinette Tuff, a clerk at Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Atlanta, persuaded 20-year-old Michael Hill not to fire the 500 rounds of ammunition he brought into the school in his duffel bag.

Officials credit Tuff with helping save 870 elementary students from what could have been another school massacre. But she points to God as the hero. 


Here are 6 reasons to put your smartphone down

By Michael Foust, Writer in Nashville, Tenn.

Perhaps I should have seen it coming. My 5-year-old son and I were getting on our bicycles, preparing to take a leisurely ride down the road, when he gave me an ultimatum, “Dad, don’t get on your phone one bit.”

A dozen things entered my mind. Can I go 30 minutes without looking at my iPhone?

What if, during one of our stops, I want to check my email or look at the latest news on Twitter, or even open the Weather Channel app when I see that dark cloud on the horizon?

“OK,” I said.


Am I responsible for Adam’s sin?

By Rhyne Putman, NOBTS

A discussion following the release of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation” last spring has Baptists asking an important theological question: “Am I judged by God on the basis of Adam’s sin or my own?” Southern Baptists are presently engaged in a conversation about the historic doctrine of “original sin” and its implications for our doctrines of salvation and the “age of accountability.”