First-person reflection: Visiting an old Landmark

Most of the baptisms I had seen over the years were not adults but children, some at a very young age. I am sure a preschooler can believe that Jesus is his Savior, but I wonder how much it really means when she also believes in Santa Claus or that storks deliver babies.

Churches try varied ways to approach question of membership and baptism

Baptism and local church membership have been inextricably linked historically in the minds of many Baptists. But that view is shifting as a decline in denominational loyalty and the easy movement of American Christians among churches of all stripes have created what writer Phyllis Tickle is calling the “great emergence”—a swirling convergence of denominational traditions toward a spiritual Christian core.

Analysis: Should Baptist churches adopt open membership? No.

Should Baptist churches be encouraged to adopt open membership, or are there good reasons for not doing so? I would like to offer five of the latter.

Analysis: Should Baptist churches adopt open membership? Yes.

Perhaps the time has come for Baptists today to ask in the same spirit whether or not Methodists, Catholics, Presbyterians and others who are genuinely committed disciples of Jesus Christ are true Christians and have been accepted by the grace of the Triune God into the one universal church.

Believer’s baptism— sacrament or symbolic ordinance?

When Jesus commanded his followers to go and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19), the earliest believers clearly understood baptism to be an important expression of faithfulness to him. Baptists stand in this heritage.

New Testament stories shape Christian character, Gregory says

Stories describe the essence of human life, and New Testament stories shape moral and spiritual character, Joel Gregory told participants at the annual T.B. Maston Lectures at Hardin-Simmons University’s Logsdon Seminary.

Three-fourths of congregations skipped BGCT meetings

Only about one-fourth of the congregations affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas have been involved in annual meetings in recent years, a committee charged with studying ways to increase annual meeting attendance discovered.

Hope springs from Valley Baptist Missions Center

Students from San Antonio and Lewisville worked throughout their spring break to repair and rebuild homes in the Rio Grande Valley damaged by Hurricane Dolly.

Texas Tidbits

At its Founder’s Day celebration in Dallas, Buckner International honored five people whose lives have been touched by the agency’s ministry to orphans and vulnerable children.

What happens when Baptists cannot agree about baptism?

If Baptists—in all their diversity—cannot agree on baptism, some theologians wonder what is left to unite them.

Bike Out Hunger riders rolling through Texas

A group of Baptist bike enthusiasts are on a 6-day bicycle trip across Texas to raise money for hungry people.

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