Chapel at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS) featured two speakers from LifeWay on March 11th and 13th.
The LifeWay Pastoral Leadership Award was presented in chapel to Philibert Dixon Meyor. At eight seminary campuses, the annual award is given to a student called to pastoral ministry. Meyor plans to return to pastor in Liberia where the Lord protected his life in prison during a civil war.
Thom Rainer is the president of LifeWay Christian Resources and the author of more than 25 of books. “Southeastern is a dangerous place, you will come here and hear the call of God,” Rainer said.
He spoke on the lukewarm church of Laodicea in Revelation 3:14-22. The church of Laodicea was located in an affluent area but distant hot and cold springs resulted in lukewarm water throughout the city.
“The church like the city was very comfortable … satisfied … self-sufficient … even though it sounds like an oxymoron, very lukewarm,” Rainer said.
He noted the decline of North American churches and the need for the mission field to be in America and beyond. “Ninety percent of all churches are either declining or growing slower than the community around them,” he said. “In other words we are losing ground.”
Rainer shared past experiences of struggling as a lukewarm pastor in the beginning of his ministry. He spoke of God’s will for the students’ lives and that Christians are “called to love even the greatest sinner around us.” Rainer added, “If God puts you in Laodicea serve in love no matter what.”
Brad Waggoner, executive vice president for LifeWay Christian Resources, and the author of several publications, delivered his message “When God Appears AWOL” from Psalm 73.
Waggoner reminded listeners that God is good regardless witnessing evidence of His goodness. He challenged the audience to “see how the goodness of God has impacted us.”
Asaph, the author of the psalm, began to take his eyes off God and the goodness of God. He began to walk by sight instead of by faith and became envious of the wicked. Asaph looked at the circumstances of others and compared them to his own life.
The psalm shows the result of questioning God and God’s grace is changing Asaph’s perspective of himself and God. Waggoner encouraged students to draw near to God by breaking away from the business of life and keep a right perspective of God.
Both Rainer and Waggoner called the audience to be faithful and fervent in loving King Jesus above all else.
To view this message online, please click here.
To view photos from chapel, please click here.
The mission of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ by equipping students to serve the church and fulfill the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20). Southeastern is an institution of higher learning and a Cooperate Program ministry of the Southern Baptist Convention.