So-Called “Smaller” Churches and the Future of the SBC

So-Called “Smaller” Churches and the Future of the SBC
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By Travis Smalley, Lead Pastor, Lakota Hills Baptist Church & NAMB Send City Missionary for Cincinnati, OH

I was being interviewed for a pastoral position in a small rural church in eastern Ohio. The first question took me off guard: Why would you come to a place like this? These wonderful people did not think they had much to offer me or the community. I handled the question with the obvious spiritual answer, “I go where God calls me to go.” And, in fact, God did call our family to serve there for a number of years.
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Where Are the Soul-Winners in Our Southern Baptist Churches?

Where Are the Soul-Winners in Our Southern Baptist Churches?
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By James Merritt, pastor of Cross Pointe Church in Duluth, GA

What have younger Southern Baptists lost in terms of evangelism that previous generations had? Perhaps I should somewhat broaden the question by replacing “younger” with “contemporary.” I don’t want to make only the “younger generation” the scapegoat for addressing what both objective statistics show and our subjective hearts know: Southern Baptist churches are not evangelizing like they used to.
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Sharing the Gospel in a Rapidly Changing Culture

Sharing the Gospel in a Rapidly Changing Culture
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By Kathy Ferguson Litton, National Consultant for NAMB for Ministry to Pastors’ Wives

Forty years ago this summer I became the wife of a Southern Baptist pastor. The world has so rapidly changed since that time that the ministry we knew and practiced then is for a world that doesn’t even exist anymore. But many of us in the ministry don’t seem to have changed with it, and that is, I believe, one of the great obstacles Southern Baptists face in reaching the world in front of us. We have focused more on protecting our subculture and our churches rather than the mission of the gospel. Thom Rainer’s commentary is spot on, “When the preferences of the church members are greater than their passion for the Gospel, the church is dying.”
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An Evangelism Dilemma We Can’t Ignore

An Evangelism Dilemma We Can’t Ignore
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By Robby Gallaty, Senior Pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville, TN

Chuck Kelley, president of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, recently wrote an article entitled, “The Great Commission: Where Are We Now?” In the article, Dr. Kelley makes a passionate plea for a return to biblical disciple-making by charting the decline of baptisms in our Convention over the past 15 years. He writes,
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