A call to ‘shake this place’
By Bob Baysinger
December 16, 2003
State Evangelism Conference set for Jan. 12-13
SPRINGFIELD – “Shake this place!," a reference to the Holy Spirit’s power in giving believers the ability to boldly share the Gospel as described in Acts 4:31, is the theme of the 2004 Missouri Baptist Convention’s (MBC) State Evangelism Conference to be held here Jan. 12-13.
Second Baptist Church, Springfield , traditionally one of the leading MBC churches in baptisms, will be the host.
“When it comes to evangelism, we’re not missing the know-how and we’re not missing the need, we’re missing the power," said Bob Caldwell, MBC’s director of evangelism, in referring to Acts 4:31 and the focus of the conference.
“We want to bring awareness to Missouri Baptists about their need of prayer and a spirit-filled life in order to be able to share their faith effectively," he said.
“There are a lot of ministries today committed to teaching Christians how to share their faith, but a Christian can’t minister beyond what they have first prayed for."
Caldwell, who worked as a full-time evangelist 12 years before joining the MBC earlier this year, said he hopes the conference will make Missouri Baptists more aware of their need of prayer for lost people and repentance in their own life as individual believers.
Featured speakers at the conference will be:
- Bobby Welch, pastor of First Baptist Church , Daytona Beach , Fla. , and former president of the Florida Baptist Convention. Welch, believed to be a leading candidate for the presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), is considered an expert in the FAITH evangelism program produced by the SBC.
- Voddie Baucham, Jr., a Texas-based evangelist whose ministry features a commitment to sound Biblical theology and expository preaching.
- Terry Hopkins, founder and director of Making A Difference Ministries who presently serves as minister of missions at First Baptist Church, Snellville, Ga.
- Jamey Ragle, a noted evangelist who is known for his spiritual gifts of preaching and evangelism.
Several key MBC leaders will be conducting “breakout" sessions dealing with a variety of evangelism-related topics. They include:
- David Clippard, MBC executive director, on “How to Give an Invitation.
- Roy Spannagel, MBC associate executive director, on “The Benefits of Being Intentional With an Evangelistic Strategy."
- Kenny Qualls, MBC associate executive director, on “The Heart of an Evangelistic Church ."
- Caldwell , on “Event Evangelism."
Also Doug Bischoff, minister of students, Spring Hill Baptist Church , Springfield , will lead a “breakout" session on “How to Build an Evangelistic Youth Ministry."
Special music will be featured throughout the conference and feature Bill Shiflett, worship specialist with the MBC; soloists Mickey Roy from Spring Hill Baptist Church; Jeana Vermillion from First Baptist Church, Seneca; Sarah Keck from Grace Fellowship Church, Trenton; and Heather Goolsby and Delicia Roberson, both students at Hannibal-LaGrange College.
“I don’t know how long it has been since I have wept for a lost person’s salvation," Caldwell said. “I believe if we want to see people come to Christ by the thousands, we need to be crying out to God. There has never been a great evangelistic movement without a great prayer movement."
Caldwell expects hundreds of Missouri Baptists to attend the conference and “hopefully" develop a new hunger for lost people.
“Lost people are more open to a Gospel witness than many Christians are to share a Gospel witness," Caldwell said. “If we believe that our next door neighbor, the people we go to school with and the people we work with are not interested in Jesus Christ, what we are saying is that we have a God who is no longer interested in drawing men, women, boys and girls to Himself."
Caldwell said the state evangelism conference ought to be the largest event of the year for Missouri Baptists.
“I want to encourage every Missouri Baptist who is interested in seeing people saved come to the Evangelism Conference," Caldwell said. “It’s a place where they can come and be trained to do evangelism."
For more information about the conference, call the MBC at (573) 636-0400 or 1-800-736-6227, ext. 655.