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Issue Date: 2013-03-21
Volume: 192
Number: 6

News

Annual Church Profile shows gains, losses

Georgia Baptists see-sawed between gains and losses in 2012 but posted gains in the number of new churches added and total membership.
New perspectives motivate Epic church plant members to San Francisco ministry

There are more affluent places in the United States than San Francisco, but not many. Living in that environment can numb people to need. Ben Pilgreen knows God is in the perspective-changing business.
Suicide prevention program available
Churches desiring to become involved in suicide prevention ministry can benefit from two-day workshops being offered through Armed Forces Mission.
Missions Center to have tighter sale conditions

Any future sale of the Baptist Missions and Ministry Center will come with tighter sale conditions as the result of a lengthy discussion during the March 12 Executive Committee.
South Metro, Henry associations form new entity
Southside Baptist Network now up and running

One of the newest approaches to revisioning the historic Baptist association may be occurring right here in Georgia. The Network, more formally known as the Southside Baptist Network, has emerged out of two associations who decided they could be more effective as one entity than as two.
Page meets with Scout leaders, stands firm
The Boy Scouts will lose members and the support of faith-based organizations if it changes its policy on homosexuality, the president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee told two top Boy Scouts leaders in a meeting March 7.
Life's lessons prepare 62 new IMB missionaries

Amid a celebration with a South African flair rivaling a Las Vegas stage show, International Mission Board trustees appointed 62 men and women as overseas missionaries.
SBC Executive Committee vice president accepts First Alpharetta pastorate
W. Thomas Hammond Jr. has announced the resignation from his vice presidency with the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee to accept the full-time pastorate of First Baptist Alpharetta.
Against guns in churches

I disagree with the Georgia pastors who have given the okay to have guns in churches. (See March 7 Index story titled "Guns in Church? Yes, with caveats, say pastors.") Georgia House state legislators passed a bill on March 7.
TrueLife could be a game changer

We are losing the battle for souls. We talk about pushing back the darkness, but it doesn’t seem to be happening. TrueLife.org could be a game changer. Over 1,000 churches including First Baptist Woodstock, Tabernacle in Cartersville, and First Baptist in Jacksonville, FL are already on board.
Page: 1% Challenge a success
The 1% Challenge for increased Cooperative Program giving has been a surprising success, Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, said Feb. 18.
Infants and ultimate destiny

While serving my first pastorate, fresh out of seminary, I was called upon to preach the funeral of a toddler who drowned in the bathtub. I had to find a biblical basis for hope for the grieving parents, grandparents, and other extended family as well as the church family and community who were stunned by this tragedy.
James C. Austin
champion of faith and freedom

James C. Austin, born on May 15, 1925, cites Zechariah 4:10 as a worthy life Scripture verse. In that passage the Lord declares: "Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin" (NLT).
Vines left speechless by book in his honor
Moments before standing to preach a sermon in a Southwestern Seminary chapel service, well-known Southern Baptist preacher and former SBC president Jerry Vines was presented with a book written in his honor by a number of leaders, pastors, and theologians. The unexpected recognition left Vines in an unfamiliar state – speechless.

Baptist News Summary

Md./Del. Baptists accepting exec applicants
Childcare open for SBC Houston meeting
Vendor privileges given to non-SBC entities
TBC building sale collapses
Former Georgia Baptist Don Rutledge Dies
Viewpoint: Evangelism in the SBC
Does NAMB still do evangelism?
Do evangelists in the SBC still do evangelism?

People and Places

Rhodes recognized for 50 years as deacon
Deaths
Honors
Revival Reports
Ministerial Moves
Former First Ellijay pastor named citizen of the year

Cooperative Program Stories

Churches recognized for Cooperative Program giving
Intentional missions giving is the reason why the Cooperative Program works. More than a Southern Baptist tradition for missionary offerings, the Cooperative Program is the way each church member can be personally involved in missions support. Lost souls across North America and around the world mean we must join hands in cooperation to reduce lostness now more than ever before.

Bible Study

Seeing or Recognizing?

John 20:1-18
Bible Studies for Life, March 31
Called to Holiness

Exodus 19:1-19
Bible Studies for Life, April 7

Columns

Putting the pieces together

Have you ever put a puzzle together and come to the very end to find that you are missing the last piece? It is so frustrating, because we know the puzzle cannot be completed until the final piece is added.
"Since you asked ..."

Is the biblical message of redemption and resurrection supported by the biblical message of creation and Noah's flood?
Evolution is on the ropes

Did "homo sapiens" (human beings) come into being by divine fiat or through a long process of evolution? The only explanation you will find in public school and university textbooks is the theory of evolution. Yet, no scientific, provable evidence supporting the theory of evolution has emerged since Charles Darwin popularized it in 1859.
The Open Door

As our convention focuses upon spiritual renewal throughout 2013, we do so in order to be certain that our hearts are in tune with the heart of God. The only way we will ever be able to have a spiritual impact upon Georgia is if our hearts are rightly related to the Lord.