Thirty-five years ago, my parents went to South Korea as missionaries. I was a young teenager at the time, and this was a difficult transition for me. I missed America, and I wasn’t excited about living in Korea.
As time unfolded, however, this move proved to be one of the greatest blessings of my life. In Korea, I surrendered my heart more fully to the Lord, and God confirmed His call on my life to serve in ministry. Additionally, lifelong friendships were forged that continue to this day. God gave me a love for Korean people and a broader perspective of the harvest fields of the world.
It has been a joy for us to train a large number of Korean students at West Coast Baptist College. Last week, three of our finest graduates—Jonah Seo, Jimmy Pak, and Paul Choi—were ordained at Bible Baptist Church in Gardena, California. I was honored and delighted to be invited by Pastor Timothy Choi to preach their ordination service.
All three of these men have the hand of God on their lives and are already seeing fruit in ministry as soulwinners and preachers of the gospel. Jonah Seo is already pastoring, Jimmy Pak serves as an assistant pastor at Bible Baptist, and Paul Choi serves as youth pastor now while preparing to plant a church in Irvine, California, next year. (more…)
When it comes to planting churches, I think we romanticize the spiritual condition of our nation.
Do you wonder how many Americans actually believe the Bible is accurate? Do you wonder which cities most need a gospel-preaching church?
Take a look at this infographic:
Barna Group recently conducted a study based on 42,855 interviews nationwide to determine which cities were the most or least “Bible-minded.” I suggest you read the full report, but here are a few takeaways for soulwinners, pastors, and church planters from this data:
1. We are in a unique generation. Among the least Bible-orientated cities, Providence, Rhode Island, was the lowest. If you remember your American history, the Rhode Island colony was founded as a haven for Baptists. Providence should be the most Bible-orientated city! (more…)
Every few months I have the privilege to teach a three-week newcomers class at our church. I relish this time with our new and prospective members, and I’ve found that they thoroughly enjoy it as well.
In the earliest days of our church, our new members orientation consisted of an afternoon reception at our home. Terrie and I would set up chairs in the living room and provide food for fellowship. We would both share our testimonies, and I would explain to our new members the structure and vision of our church. I’d share our Baptist distinctives with them, express my heart to be available for their spiritual needs, and give them an opportunity to ask questions.
Over the years, this new member orientation has evolved. Now we offer it as a three-week class during our normal Sunday school hour, and we call it “Starting Point.” I’m currently in the middle of one of our series now—I teach the final class tomorrow.
In our current class, we have about seventy-five prospective members from a variety of backgrounds. We have single moms, a couple who were saved from an Islamic background, a single dad from a Catholic background, and several young couples with no religious background at all. You can see how they would have many questions regarding what we believe and even what a local church is supposed to be and do. (more…)
(If you cannot see this video in your RSS reader or email, you can watch it here.)
I recorded the video update above for our Lancaster Baptist church family yesterday. I’m currently in another country, and I will not be updating on our meetings here. But I asked my staff to post this video for friends around the country who are praying for us. I appreciate your prayers, and it’s been exciting to see God answer them as our team has seen Him work in powerful ways this week. We look forward to being home soon.
[Today’s post is a guest post by Dr. Rick Flanders. Dr. Flanders is an evangelist sent out of First Baptist Church of Bridgeport, Michigan. He has been in full time ministry since 1973 and preaches revival meetings around the country.]
One great obstacle to progress in the work of the Gospel, both now and in all times, is the unbelief of God’s servants.
Consider the commission given to Moses, and then to Joshua, that Israel should conquer the land of Canaan. The key to fulfilling this commission was faith. Israel was to believe the promises of God and act on them.
I believe the biblical record of that commission is meant to be instructive to New Testament Christians regarding our commission to evangelize the world. Like to the Israelites of old, the key to fulfilling it is faith. We are to find the promises of Christ inherent in the Great Commission and believe in them as we move forward to take the Gospel to the world.
When Jesus said “all nations” in Matthew 28:19 and Luke 24:47, did He mean those words? (more…)