ERLC’s Year in Review & What Will Be Our Response?
The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission is celebrating God’s faithful work through The Psalm 139 Project in 2022. And, Chris Turner with the Tennessee Baptist Convention hopes churches will mark four distinctives as they begin a new year.
Roe reversal, election of leader highlight ERLC’s year
The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission is celebrating God’s faithful work through The Psalm 139 Project in 2022. The ERLC’s ministry to provide ultrasound technology to pregnancy centers and train staff members in its use – placed, or committed to be placed, 27 machines in nine states in 2022, surpassing the previous annual high of 25 in 2021. The total of 52 exceeded the goal of 50 placements established leading to January 2023, which would have been the 50th anniversary of the Roe decision had it not been overruled. The ERLC partnered with Baptist state conventions in Alabama, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia in making placements, as well as former pro football player Benjamin Watson and his wife Kirsten, the North American Mission Board and the Tennessee state government.
The group also focused on digital media in 2022. The Digital Public Square provided multiple resources intended to help churches, as well as government and business leaders, to respond to technological challenges in ways that support religious freedom and free expression. The project’s production in its inaugural year included a book, as well as a weekly podcast and newsletter, with more books and other resources on the way.
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Chris Turner with the Tennessee Baptist Convention hopes churches will mark four distinctives as they begin a new year.
He says after studying God’s Word, he comes back to these four traits that are necessary for a healthy church. Humility, repentance, prayer and proclamation are the four traits.
Humility is the first step in approaching God and the Bible talks incessantly about God’s expectation that we be humble.
Genuine humility produces genuine repentance. Each perpetually produces the other.
Theologian E.M. Bounds said, “Four things let us ever keep in mind: God hears prayer, God heeds prayer, God answers prayer, and God delivers by prayer.” Prayer produces humility and repentance, but also produces clarity of purpose and understanding of direction.
In II Chronicles 6:32-33, it is the sanctity of the temple and the holiness of God’s people that is a proclamation of salvation to those who don’t know God. In 7:19-22, it is the disobedience of God’s people and the destruction of the temple that is a proclamation of the sinfulness of God’s people to those who don’t know God.
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58 baptisms at TN jail by neighboring churches’ MedAdvance in 2023; More lives to be changed. 10 reasons for disaster relief training.
When more than 50 people were baptized at the Sumner County, Tennessee Jail in early May, it was the culmination of many years of ministry from two neighboring churches; For those with a passion for healthcare and a calling to missions, the International Mission Board has avenues of service ready to fill; Unfortunately, natural disasters are inevitable in this world. Coy Webb of Send Relief encourages believers to get trained in responding to disaster relief
Bilingual Texas church plant bridges generations; Christians and predatory payday lending; Demonstrating faith in Jesus.
As the Hispanic population in the U.S. grows, new challenges are emerging Christians should care about predatory lending because its practices exploit and take advantage of our neighbors, whom we’ve been commanded to love; Jesus revealed His identity as Messiah and Lord through His words and His actions.
90,000 U.S. testimonies of answered prayer sought for England monument; 6 Ways Pastors Become Men of Prayer
Everyone finds great joy when God answers their prayer. Richard Gamble’s is working hard to build what he calls the Eternal Wall of Answered Prayer, an interactive, 160-foot monument of 1 million white bricks built into an infinity loop on a plot of high-profile land in Birmingham, England; In a piece in the Baptist Press Toolbox, Kie Bowman encourages believers to pray and offers some tips to pastors and believers on how to create culture of prayer in the local church.