God richly blessed me this weekend with an opportunity to attend the first Mississippi Founders Conference. Over fifty people gathered together for fellowship with like-minded believers, worship corporately, and to sit under the teaching of Dr. Tom Nettles of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
After church Sunday morning in Lakeshore we drove up to Jackson MS and worshiped with Grace Baptist Church for their evening service. special guest Dr. Tom Nettles preached 2 Thess. 2:7-17 on the operation of God’s wrath, the operation of God’s Grace, and the operation of God’s consolation. They already have the mp3 on their web site ready for download. Grace Baptist Church meets in the Reformed Theological Seminary library. After the service we stayed for a fellowship meal and met several great folks including the facilities and grounds director at RTS.
Castlewoods Baptist Church in Brandon hosted the event on Monday. Dr. Nettles gave an engaging lecture on Spurgeon in the morning session and a very encouraging and informative lecture in the afternoon entitled, “The Local Church and Baptist Identity.” It could have been titled, “What does true reformation look like in a local baptist church?” I recommend grabbing this one when they make the mp3 available.
I had a great time of fellowship with one of our church members, James Bobbitt, as we traveled to and from the conference. Monday, we met up with my friend Tony Hicks, pastor of Clifton Baptist Church. I met several great folks at the conference including Mike Corley who hosts a radio talk show in Vicksburg. Check out his website and subscribe to his podcast.
I also met a guy from my home town of Baton Rouge who just planted a new church there called “La Croix.” (French for “the Cross.” very cool) They meet in a gymnastics studio, not but a few miles from my parents house. I’m excited to see the progress of this new venture.
In the question and answer time, Dr. Nettles expressed an unfettered optimism as the reformation within the Southern Baptist Convention begins to develop past the infancy stage. While great obstacles still loom large, from his chair at SBTS he sees more and more churches calling pastors who unashamedly herald the doctrines of grace and trumpet the sovereignty of God over all things
I took a brief time away from our ongoing relief, recovery, and rebuilding efforts on the gulf coast to hear one of my heroes, Dr. Tom Nettles, in person. I was richly blessed by his teaching; but in all honesty, I could have snagged the mp3s later. More than anything I wanted to show up and demonstrate my support of the Mississippi Founders Fraternal and to stand shoulder to shoulder with fellow believers in our state, who love and proclaim the gospel of grace. I can’t thank enough Mingo and the others at Castlewoods who spearheaded this endeavor. I pray that the founders friendly network serves to strengthen and encourage churches and pastors to move forward in God-centered reform; by his grace and for his glory.