Current News Dec. 20
*BMA Seminary Is Ready for Spring! (pg. 2)
Pre-registration has already begun at BMA Seminary in Jacksonville, Texas. Registration Week is Jan. 8-12, and classes begin on Jan. 29. For more information, visit the seminary’s website at bmats.edu, call (903) 586-2501 or (800) 259-5673; or email email@example.com.
*BMA of MS Invites AR Pastors to Retreat (pg. 2)
Jeff Dixon – The 2018 BMA of Mississippi Pastor’s Retreat is set for Jan. 22-23, and Arkansas pastors are encouraged to attend. It looks like a good program that will be very productive in the ministry of our pastors. Dr. Mark Livingston will be the guest speaker. He is a native Mississippian, serves as pastor of First Baptist Church of Keltys in Lufkin, Texas and is a professor at BMA Seminary. The event will be held at Lake Tiak O’Khata (LTOK.com) in Louisville, Miss. The theme is “Nothing But Christ: Recapturing Christ Centered, Expositional Preaching — I Cor. 2:2.” All materials will be provided, and sessions will cover the following:
*The Newspaper and Your Leadership (pg. 2)
Randy Adams – It was once said a preacher ought to have the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other — that the sermon needs to connect biblical truth to life today, life in this world and life in a particular place. That image of the pastor-preacher with the Bible and the newspaper made sense when I first heard it many years ago. It still resonates with me. I suspect, however, I’m fighting an uphill battle on this one. Newspapers are in decline. Most young adults don’t read them anymore. News is found in other places and with personal “filters.” Uphill battle or not, it’s one that deserves a fight. Ministry leaders need to read their local newspaper. Thumbing through the paper with your hands, your eye catches things it would miss if you read the paper on your smartphone or computer.
*Archaeologists Discover Biblical Corinth Underwater (pg. 2)
“New archaeological excavations at the ancient port of the earthquake that struck the Biblical city of Corinth, which is now underwater, have uncovered Roman architecture. Jesus’ disciple Paul visited the ancient city while it was under Roman rule, according to the Bible,” said Anugrah Kumar in a Dec. 17 Christian Post report. Greek and Danish archaeologists investigating Lechaion’s harbour areas, as part of the Lechaion Harbour Project, have discovered traces of Roman engineering and ancient buildings.
Christian Hospitality (pg. 2)
Mike McEuen – Christian hospitality is different from the world’s way of entertaining. Entertaining focuses everything on the host family. In entertaining, the home is supposed to be spotless. The food is supposed to be well prepared and abundant. The host must appear relaxed and good natured. Hospitality, by contrast, focuses on the guests. Their needs are of first importance. Whether it be a place to stay, nourishing food, a listening ear or acceptance, their needs come first!
Year End Giving (pg. 3)
Terry Kimbrow – This is the time when many think about making a year-end contribution to Central Baptist College. Though receiving a tax deduction should not be the primary motivation for giving, it would certainly be financially responsible to make your donation before Dec. 31 to enjoy a 2017 tax deduction. CBC recently launched a new giving program called “Gifts that Transform.” Central Baptist College exists to transform lives through education that integrates Christian faith and academic excellence in a Christ-centered environment. With that in mind, every contribution made to CBC is a “transformational gift” because that gift is used to further the mission of the college.
What If (pg. 3)
Judy Wallace – What if… You smiled at that person at school instead of ignoring them? You talked to the “nerd” instead of about them? You didn’t participate in making fun of your teacher and their quirky ways? You did your own homework instead of borrowing someone else’s?
Spotlight on Missions (pr. 3)
Sam & Sue Jordan (Jordan), Jesse & Rebecca Hales (Dominican Republic), Doug & Diane Lee (Philippines)
Lessons From the Shepherds (pg. 4)
Larry Barker – At Christmas, we are once again introduced to programs, cantatas and musicals that have all the familiar characters of shepherds, magi and the manger. We are used to seeing boys dressed up in a bathrobe with a towel wrapped around their head, and holding a staff in one of their hands. They are absolutely adorable, but they are far from what the shepherds were actually like at the time of Jesus birth.
CBC Sport Scores (pg. 4)
Baseball Signees, NCCA Rankings, Men’s Basketball, Women’s Basketball, Wrestling
Three More Blessings (pg. 4)
Editor – Since my last report, we received three more special offerings! They couldn’t have come at a better time because Marene tells me the accounts are “even lower than this time last year.” To be honest, that scares me a little because you know what happened last year (salaries held for a few weeks!) But God… always supplies our needs, and I know He’ll do it again. Thank you, Abba, for using some of your children to bless us financially and wish us a “Merry Christmas:”
BMA Float Wins Grand Prize (pg. 5)
Bill Sheffield, Pastor – The theme for the entire parade for the city of Gentry this year was “O, Christmas Tree.” Victory Baptist Church entered a float with a “slight twist” on that theme. Recognizing that I Peter 2:24 declares that Jesus “…bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness…,” that scripture was prominently displayed on each side of the float, which was divided into three sections. The first section displayed a traditional manger scene and the middle section presented a modern Christmas tree with a family around the father in a rocker, reading the story of the birth of Jesus from a family Bible. The final section displayed an 8 ft. tall cross, with people kneeling at the foot of the cross.
The Christian Reason for the Christmas Season (pg. 6)
Rayburn Freeman, Mississippi Baptist – “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God” (Psa. 20:7) “Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord!” (Isa. 31:1). In Psalm 20, David reminds us of two divisions of people who are very different. The first division includes those who trust in things. In conclusion, things rebound to personal accomplishment and praise. These accomplishments may come through the exercise of mental, physical, relational, associational or financial efforts.
The One Who Started Christmas (pg. 6)
Jesse Spurlock, Oklahoma Baptist – It is a known fact that men don’t like to shop. That being the case, I could almost sympathize with the woman I once heard about who was out Christmas shopping with her two children. After two hours of the pushing and shoving of the crowded store, looking at row after row of toys and hearing her children ask for everything they saw on those many shelves, she was feeling the overwhelming pressure that so many of us feel during the holiday season.
Reflections (pg. 7)
Paul White – As another year begins to fade into memories, some memories are better than others. With a New Year on the horizon, this would be a great time to take inventory of one’s walk with God, with questions like: Do I feel that I have grown spiritually? Are there some specific areas of my life I need to work on? Is there something more I can do for Jesus and my church in 2018? My answers would be, in this order: maybe, yes and definitely yes.
G.W. Endicott, Jonesboro Minister, Dies (pg. 7)
George W. Endicott, 95 of Jonesboro, died Dec. 12 following a heart attack. He surrendered to the ministry in 1936, and was ordained July 23, 1936 at Shady Grove Baptist Church near Bakersfield, Mo. He was a state missionary in Missouri and pastored several churches there, and in Texas and Arkansas, including: Prairie at Lake City; Walnut Grove at Dixie; West Race at Searcy; First at Taylor and Little River in Lost Cain community. Graveside services were held Dec. 14 at Nettleton Cemetery, under the direction of Emerson Funeral Home. Jerry Jolly officiated, and Gary Gipson brought the special music.
Through the Bible in a Year (pg. 8)