Episode 271

A Fire Chief’s Ministry, NOBTS Defend ’23 Apologetics Conference & Global Inflation Burdening Missionaries

Jan 17, 2023

Every pastor has a burning passion for the Lord and his church. For Dwight Easler, this burning passion carries over into his work as a local fire chief, which he views as an extension of his ministry. A record attendance with church and college groups coming from as far away as Oregon and Canada marked this year’s Defend 2023 apologetics conference at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary Jan. 2-6. And, Otis Newman opened the door and stared at the empty refrigerator. The kids rifled through the cabinets next to him. The family ate everything except dried goods before leaving for vacation.

Transcript

Every pastor has a burning passion for the Lord and his church. For Dwight Easler, this burning passion carries over into his work as a local fire chief, which he views as an extension of his ministry.

Easler has served as the senior pastor of Corinth Baptist Church in Gaffney, South Carolina and with the Corinth Fire Department for nearly 20 years.

He says the role is not only about meeting emergency needs in the community, but also about building relationships.

Last year the Corinth Fire Department responded to more than 400 emergency calls within both its rural community and other neighboring districts. Easler was personally a part of responding to more than 200 of those calls.
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A record attendance with church and college groups coming from as far away as Oregon and Canada marked this year’s Defend 2023 apologetics conference at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary Jan. 2-6.

The weeklong event featured top Christian apologists as plenary speakers and 50 breakout speakers in more than 100 breakout sessions, including an in-person conversation between an apologist and an atheist, a first for the conference.

Travis Dickinson, Dallas Baptist University professor and author of “Wandering Toward God,” told of his experience with doubt while in seminary and noted the unsettling trend of 60-80 percent of Christian youth walking away from church and the faith during college.

Many who walk away say they could not find a safe place to ask questions or had not found adequate answers, Dickinson explained, but added that doubt can be an opportunity to find truth and to grow in faith.
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Good News for Today is sponsored by The Voice of the Martyrs

Good News for Today is made possible through our friends at The Voice of the Martyrs, a nonprofit organization that serves persecuted Christians around the world. Founded in 1967 by Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM is dedicated to inspiring believers to deepen their commitment to Christ and to fulfill His Great Commission — no matter the cost. Find out more and sign up for their free monthly magazine at vom.org/goodnews.
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Otis Newman opened the door and stared at the empty refrigerator. The kids rifled through the cabinets next to him. The family ate everything except dried goods before leaving for vacation.

The International Mission Board missionary cringed just thinking about how much it might cost to restock. Inflation has been a global hot topic for months.

IMB president Paul Chitwood admits staggering inflation rates at home and around the world have created some significant financial challenges for missionaries.

While the United States’ inflation rate ended 2022 around 7.1 percent, food in Lebanon and other areas of Middle East countries has increased …up to 280 percent on food alone…raising the price of a gallon of milk to $20.

Still, missionaries persist in the work God has given them. Pray for them and do what you can to help them in their task.

Read the full piece and sign up for our daily emails at Baptist Press.com.

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