August 2006 Issue
From Our Former President
June 27, 2006
Dear Southern Baptists!
Thank you a million times a million for the unspeakable privilege
of serving you the last two years as president of the Southern
Baptist Convention. While I earnestly plead for your continual
prayers, please, please begin now to pray long and hard for our
new president, Dr. Frank Page.
Recently I've been asked several questions from across the
Convention which, in a fashion, summarizes these days.
"What came out of this year's meeting at Greensboro?"
While the Convention dealt with a number of important issues
and items, it most definitely had several defining conclusions.
There was a spirit of oneness and a unity of purpose as the Convention
did, in fact, very enthusiastically reconfirm that the Great Commission
and soul-winning evangelism are still the main thing for the SBC
and that the Cooperative Program is the best way to collectively
finance the cost of world evangelism.
Additionally, the Convention voted almost unanimously that
they wanted pastors and people who are leading them not to be
persons blinded by a theology that encourages and promotes drinking
alcoholic beverages of any kind.
"Were there any surprises at the Convention?"
Oh yes! Undoubtedly, the greatest surprise to almost everyone
was that several Southern Baptist pastors actually came to a microphone
and publicly promoted the drinking of alcoholic beverages and
wanted the SBC to do the same! Actually, I never thought I would
see that take place, and it is not only a surprise but an outrage!
My father was addicted to alcohol, which contributed to his early
death. He advised me that if I would never take the first drink
I would never end up like he did. I did not, and he was correct!
I understand one pastor's blog site indicates he believes his
drinking assists him in soul-winning! What a pathetic joke! These
blogging Baptist pastors just blew their collective cork!
From my vantage point, as presiding officer of the Convention,
I took a slow and deliberate look at the number of ballots raised
in support of such foolishness and comparatively, there was hardly
anyone who was in favor of encouraging the use or promotion of
the use of alcoholic beverages. In fact, the overwhelming voice
and raised ballot vote made it clear that Southern Baptists do
not want leaders that use or promote the use of
any type of alcohol.
We have many outstanding young pastors and others on their
way to leading this Convention to its greatest days, and they
are smart enough to know they will not do it as "sipping
saints," but as sober soul winners! God help us to never,
ever elect a user or promoter of the use of alcoholic beverages
to any leadership position, and I am personally sorry and ashamed
if we have any in those positions now!
The next three months of our attempt to witness, win, and baptize
one million is of large interest to many. Accelerate Accelerate
Accelerate! Just as I urged on page 13 of the Convention
program, we need to do a number of things to go all out these
last three months: Have a revival, do another associational baptism
rally, have a local one-day Crossover, conclude this church year
with a major event centered upon reaching the lost and baptizing.
In short, "Do all you can with all you have where you are
The other most-asked question is, "What will Bobby
Welch do after being president of the SBC and 'retiring' as pastor
of First Baptist Church, Daytona Beach?"
My deep commitment to the Lord is to give the best of the rest
of my life to multiplying soul winners to reach the world through
the SBC. My quest is to see the Convention do MORE then ever before
MORE going and MORE giving! I plan to do this by encouraging
MORE going and giving through state conventions, pastor's conferences,
evangelism conferences, local churches, and association-wide meetings.
Already a number of these are scheduled, and I am preparing to
do all of these meetings I possibly can in the future.
By the work of Christ, you of the Southern Baptist Convention
can win this world now!
To that end ...
With You In His Certain Victory!
© 2014 Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee
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