Gaines and Graham Urge Gracious Reconciliation Moore Admits "Failures" and Offers Sincere Apology for "Broad, Unnecessarily Harsh" Words

March 22, 2017

Dr. Rick Patrick, Senior Pastor
First Baptist Church, Sylacauga, AL
Executive Director, Connect 316

After Russell Moore offered a crystal clear apology in Baptist Press this week, Southern Baptist statesmen Steve Gaines and Jack Graham are urging gracious reconciliation. Because I have great respect for these men, I wish to honor their request with a more conciliatory posture than I have demonstrated in the past. Listen to the words of Gaines and Graham as they call us to move forward and put this ugly brouhaha behind us:

Regarding his work at the ERLC, I have agreed with most of his statements, especially those regarding the sanctity of human life, the sacredness of heterosexual, monogamous marriage and religious liberty,” Gaines said. “However, I have disagreed with some of the statements he made during the election and I especially disagreed with the tone with which he made some of those statements. I have discussed all of this privately with him. He has genuinely apologized for his mistakes and that is good enough for me. I believe all of us who are recipients of grace and forgiveness should grant him the same forgiveness that we desire from the Lord. It is high time that we put all of this behind us. None of these matters will prevent Bellevue Baptist Church from continuing our support of the Cooperative Program, the ERLC and Dr. Moore. It is time to move ahead and work together to double our efforts to take the Gospel to our nation and the nations. —Dr. Steve Gaines

This is a gracious and unifying statement from Dr. Moore. —Dr. Jack Graham

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A Terrible Thing to Waste Philippians 4:1-9

March 21, 2017

By: Franklin Kirksey

A terrible thing to waste
? — a mind.  A mind is a terrible thing to waste. Rev. James S. Hewett (1930-2006), editor and publisher of Parables Etc. and The Pastors Story File, shares, “A man had bought a new gadget-unassembled, of course–and after reading and rereading the instructions he couldn’t figure out how it went together. Finally, he sought the help of an old handyman who was working in the backyard. The old fellow picked up the pieces, studied them, then began assembling the gadget. In a short time, he had it put together. ‘That’s amazing,’ said the man. ‘And you did it without even looking at the instructions!’
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Dear Pastor: Apologetics Is a Standard Operating Feature of Gospel-Centered Ministry

March 20, 2017

By: Ross Inman

Assistant Professor of Philosophy and teaches in the School of Theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared at Theological Matters and is used by permission.

Let me begin by making a claim that many will find rather contentious: Apologetic ministry—the ministry of commending and defending the “faith which was once for all handed down to the saints” (Jude 3)—is a vital and essential part of Gospel-centered, New Testament ministry. To many evangelical laity and non-laity alike, this claim not only lacks the clear ring of truth, but it is much too strong, as it needlessly saddles “ordinary” followers of Christ with the responsibility of being seriously intellectually engaged with ideas. Here, I briefly underscore the Scriptural grounding of apologetic ministry, and why the consistent New Testament witness is that such ministry is an essential component of impactful, Gospel-centered ministry. Continue reading

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