By Will Hall, Message Editor
ALEXANDRIA (LBM) – The Resolutions Committee has finalized seven resolutions for consideration as consensus statements of the messengers to the 170th Session of the Louisiana Baptist Convention.
The committee’s recommendations will be offered for a vote at 2:55 p.m. during the Tuesday portion of the Nov. 13-14 program.
The seven statements cover a span of issues from expressing appreciation for those who played a major part in the annual meeting to offering congratulations on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief ministry.
Another celebrates the 100th anniversary of the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and the spiritual impact it has had on the state, the nation and the world.
Four of the resolutions address either spiritual matters, or moral issues and social concerns.
ON THE SIN OF RACISM, INCLUDING ALT-RIGHT WHITE SUPREMACY parallels a resolution approved by messengers to the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention this summer.
The alt-right is described as a movement “to establish a single white nation in North America” and its members largely are “white millennial” males in college, or who have a college degree, according to political scientist George Hawley of the University of Alabama. He has written extensively regarding his findings about the alt right, noting that these individuals have “no interest in the mainstream conservative ideals of traditional family values and limited government.”
ON THE GOSPEL FOR ALL affirms the Bible’s teaching that “God loves every sinner everywhere and desires their salvation” and declares “He has provided for the forgiveness of anyone’s sins through the death of Jesus on the cross.”
This resolution concludes that “any sinner can repent and trust Jesus for salvation” and exhorts Louisiana Baptist to use all biblical means “to proclaim the Gospel to everyone.”
ON PREMARITAL COUNSELING and ON PRE-DIVORCE COUNSELING were forwarded to the Resolutions Committee from the Moral and Social Concerns Committee as part of a larger effort to speak to the need for Louisiana lawmakers to create incentives to help keep marriages and families together.
Census data indicates Louisiana has one of the highest divorce rates in the nation, with only Arkansas, Idaho and Nevada doing worse.
The first of these two resolutions encourages pre-marital counseling for couples considering marriage, emphasizing research that shows couples who received premarital counseling are half as likely as other couples to separate or divorce within the first three years of marriage.
The second is aimed at reconciliation for couples who have children and are considering divorce. Despite the popular notion that most divorces are acrimonious, studies indicate this is not the case and suggest up to 40 percent of couples who have filed for divorce are open to reconciliation, but need help.
The spiritual dimensions are enormous, with data suggesting up to 6,000 Louisiana children, yearly, would be spared from suffering a family breakup. The state, meanwhile, which is suffering budget woes, would benefit from an estimated $268 million, annually, in savings of “family fragmentation costs.”
Scott Teutsch, pastor of Plain Dealing Baptist Church is chairman of the Resolutions Committee, and Larry Johnson, pastor of Crossroads Community Church, Kenner, is vice chairman. Other members are Cullen Clark, pastor of First Baptist Church, Crowley; Tommy French, pastor emeritus, Jefferson Baptist Church, Baton Rouge; Jon McCartney, pastor of North Hills Church, Calhoun; Kayla Muller, member of Williams Boulevard Baptist Church, Kenner; and, Clark Palmer, pastor of Faith Baptist Church, Tioga.