Archive for August, 2012

More Than a Carpenter

By Franklin L. Kirksey, Pastor, First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort, Alabama, and author of Sound Biblical Preaching: Giving the Bible a Voice.

These expositions by Dr. Kirksey are offered to suggest sermon or Bible study ideas for pastors and other church leaders, both from the exposition and from the illustrative material, or simply for personal devotion.

Mark 6:1-6


Dr. Josh McDowell wrote a book several years ago titled More Than a Carpenter.  This best-selling book presents a strong case for the deity and purpose of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Jill Heatherly shares the following in an editorial review, “Since its release, More Than a Carpenter has been challenging readers to ask the question, ‘Who is Jesus?’  Author and renowned speaker Josh McDowell acknowledges that while the topic of God is widely accepted, the name of Jesus often causes irritation.  ‘Why don’t the names of Buddha, Mohammed, Confucius offend people?  The reason is that these others didn’t claim to be God, but Jesus did.’  By addressing questions about scientific and historical evidence, the validity of the Bible, and proofs of the resurrection, McDowell helps the reader come to an informed and intelligent decision about whether Jesus was a liar, a lunatic, or the Lord.”[1]

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President’s Address


Known as the “Prince of Preachers,” Richard Fuller (1804-1876) was elected SBC president in 1859-60. He baptized such people as Annie Armstrong and Joshua Levering. During the Civil War, he assisted foreign missionaries separated from the SBC Foreign Mission Board in Richmond by the fighting.

Born in Beaufort, South Carolina,  Fuller enrolled at age 16 at Harvard in 1820, where he excelled until tuberculosis forced him to leave school after little more than two years of study. His academic accomplishments caused the faculty to confer a degree anyway.


Message delivered May 10, 1861

Beloved Brethren: You require from me no expression of gratitude for the honor thus conferred upon me the second time. Were it proper, I could say much, for my burdened heart would, I know, be cheered by your sympathies. But there are times for brief speeches and vigorous action, and as I wish to impress the truth upon you, I will set the example.

Let me but utter this reflection: that, as we are in the midst of most exasperating time, so ought we to give the more earnest heed to ourselves, lest in any moment we forget the Spirit of Jesus, which ought to breathe in all our actions, and words, and feelings.

If any minor differences have unhappily insinuated themselves into this body, let the present strife and hostilities around us calm and heal these discrepancies and bind us more closely together. The world has never seen—Heaven has never wept over—a more mournful phenomenon than that now exhibited (I grieve to say it) at the North, where not only politicians and bad men, but Christian editors, and pastors, and churches are breathing out slaughter inciting to fury passions already terribly inflamed and seemingly thirsting for fratricidal carnage. Let us watch and pray, lest we forget the example and Spirit of Him who taught us to ‘bless them that curse us and ‘do good to them that hate us and despitefully use us.  As we hear the ministers and churches of the Prince of Peace crying out for food, let us exclaim, ‘Father forgive them for they know not what they do'; let us say, ‘Into their secret, my soul, enter not thou; into their assemblies, mine honor, be thou not united.’

Above all, let these alarms and perturbation elevate our thoughts to that other world whither we are hastening, and with which we have more to do than with this present evil world; let me inspire us with more earnest aspiration for that rest which remains for the people of God, and into which we shall soon enter.


Rite of Passage Parenting:
That’s Not Right

By Walker Moore

Too often, I take a look at something and the first thought that comes to mind is … that’s not right. I don’t know why, but I shake my head from side to side whenever that thought reaches my consciousness.

Not long ago, a friend sent me a picture from a store that features souvenirs from the city of Tulsa. On the rack of knickknacks, he found a series of small shot glasses. (Since I’m a Baptist, I’ve only seen these in places like Stuckey’s.) Each shot glass contained the words, “Tulsa, Oklahoma” inscribed in a circle. At the center of the circle was a drawing of the praying hands statue at Oral Roberts University. After one look at these little glasses adorned with praying hands, all I could think was … that’s not right. But I seem to have that thought often.

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Introducing Walker Moore

This year marks the 19th anniversary of Awe Star Ministries as well as the 39th ministry anniversary of Walker Moore, president and founder of Awe Star Ministries.

During these years of service, God has used Walker and the thousands of teens he has taken overseas to dozens of countries – 40 to be exact – to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. These efforts have seen countless people commit their lives to Jesus.

During my tenure as a staff writer for the IMB’s Commission magazine, it was my privilege to travel on a coverage to Hungary with Walker and about 20 teens who, through a Gospel-centric street drama, proclaimed effectively the saving message of our Lord. I saw people of all ages confess their sins and trust in Christ.

Were I a name-dropper, I could cite numerous notable churches in our Southern Baptist Zion who have enjoyed Walker’s communications skills as a preacher of the Gospel and a motivator for missions. Walker also has preached in many churches whose town names don’t even appear on the map. Having been blessed to hear his preaching several times, I can unequivocally say that a pastor and church could hardly do better than to have Walker keynote a missions conference, or provide pulpit supply.

And if your church needs a leader who can organize and even lead your mission team:

For more than 10 years, Walker’s popular “Rite of Passage Parenting” column has appeared every week in the Oklahoma Baptist Messenger. In recent years, other state Baptist papers have begun publishing his column. He is also the author of Rite of Passage Parenting: Four Essential Experiences to Equip Your Kids for Life (book and workbook, Nelson Books, 2007).

SBCToday is pleased to have Walker writing for us, and we hope you will enjoy his unique take on life, ministry and parenting as scores of thousands of Southern Baptists have been doing for years.

Norm Miller,

SBCToday editor/moderator


A Commentary on Article Nine:
The Security of the Believer, of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan for Salvation”

By Johnathan Pritchett


Article 9: The Security of the Believer

We affirm that when a person responds in faith to the Gospel, God promises to complete the process of salvation in the believer into eternity. This process begins with justification, whereby the sinner is immediately acquitted of all sin and granted peace with God; continues in sanctification, whereby the saved are progressively conformed to the image of Christ by the indwelling Holy Spirit; and concludes in glorification, whereby the saint enjoys life with Christ in heaven forever.

We deny that this Holy Spirit-sealed relationship can ever be broken. We deny even the possibility of apostasy.

John 10:28-29; 14:1-4; 16:12-14; Philippians 1:6; Romans 3:21-26; 8:29,30; 35-39; 12:1-3; 2 Corinthians 4:17; Ephesians 1:13-14; Philippians 3:12; Colossians 1:21-22; 1 John 2:19; 3:2; 5:13-15; 2 Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 13:5; James 1:12; Jude 24-25


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