February 24, 2011 Print Edition

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Tom Elliff nominated as next IMB president

RICHMOND, Va. (BP)--Thomas (Tom) D. Elliff, longtime Oklahoma pastor, Southern Baptist Convention leader and former missionary, is the unanimous recommendation of a 15-member trustee search committee to be the next president of International Mission Board.

The nomination of Elliff — who served as a missionary to Zimbabwe with his wife, Jeannie, in the early 1980s — will be presented to the full board of trustees for consideration and a possible vote when they meet March 15-16 in Dallas.

If elected, Elliff would succeed Jerry Rankin as leader of the mission board, which coordinates the work of more than 5,000 Southern Baptist missionaries worldwide. Rankin retired as IMB president July 31, 2010, after 17 years at the helm. Veteran missionary and Executive Vice President Clyde Meador currently serves as interim president.

Editorial: Religious liberty in the Arab world

As revolution sweeps through the Arab world, a deeply troubling trend is emerging – the absence of religious liberty as a key element in the transitioning governments and the failure of our government to publicly and vigorously defend this most fundamental of liberties. This reality is especially disturbing in Iraq and Afghanistan, nations liberated at great cost of American lives and treasure.

‘Signs of real revival’ in Okeechobee, pastor says

Okeechobee (FBW)—A recent revival at First Baptist Church in Okeechobee has sparked a new interest in all things spiritual—especially prayer, according to Pastor Randy Huckabee. The church has been awakened from complacency since a “Thirst Conference” Jan. 9-12, he said.

“I usually don’t call a four-day meeting a revival—just a conference,” Huckabee said. “This one had signs of real revival.”

Point of View: Are their lives not worth living?

ALEXANDRIA, La. (BP)—What is more preferable than being a child born into a poor home? According to Rep. Gwen Moore the alternative is being aborted—killed in your mother’s womb.

Children in poor homes, particularly single parent homes, are subjected to “eating Ramen noodles” and “mayonnaise sandwiches,” Moore said during a debate in the House of Representatives over a bill that would defund Planned Parenthood of federal tax dollars.

Point of View: Do we have the right books?

Are there books missing from the Bible? The issue of whether the Bible contains the right books produces strange bedfellows. Agnostics, liberal Christians, Muslims, and fictional novels such as The Da Vinci Code jointly argue that the fourth-century Roman Emperor Constantine used the power of his office to force the church to exclude certain books from the approved reading list. The power of the Roman church, then, oppressed equally diverse yet viable “alternative Christianities.” This popular viewpoint resonates with aspects of postmodern culture that grants privileged status to oppressed groups.

Point of View: Dave Says

Dave Says is a column featuring the financial advice of nationally syndicated radio host Dave Ramsey, the Dave Says column is filled with timely, relevant questions and answers taken from actual calls on Ramsey's radio program, The Dave Ramsey Show.

Point of View: A false picture: ‘Skins’ and teen exploitation

MTV’s new series Skins is, according to creator Bryan Elsley, “a very simple and in fact rather old-fashioned television series about the lives and loves of teenagers, how they get through high school, how they deal with their friends, and also how they circumnavigate some of the complications of sex, relationships, educations, parents, drugs and alcohol.”

Pensacola students drawn to Myrtle Grove Baptist after Strength Team school assemblies

MYRTLE GROVE (FBW)—Myrtle Grove Baptist Church recently hosted Mike Hagen and the Strength Team for more than a dozen performances over five days in Pensacola, according to the church’s pastor, Ron Lentine—who said that as a result, 190 made decisions for Christ and 54 made first time decisions.

Annual worship choir retreat teaches ‘community’

ORLANDO (FBC)—Having served as worship pastor at First Baptist Church of Temple Terrace in Tampa for a little more than a year, Eric Yeldell was looking for new avenues to improve his skills and lead his own congregation in new worship experiences.

Yeldell found that and more at the Florida Worship Choir and Orchestra retreat Jan. 27-28 at First Baptist Church in Orlando.

Prayer Guide: Week of Prayer for North American Missions and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering

Week of Prayer for North American Missions and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering

Some things are free, Chinese man learns

SOUTHEAST ASIA (BP)—Cardboard boxes sit half-opened in the back of the truck. An elementary aged Chinese boy sneaks away from his grandparents, who are standing in a long line of tourists outside a restaurant, to take a look.

The sign leaning against the boxes says the books inside are free. The boy glances around to see if anyone will help him. The Southern Cross Project volunteers, however, are busy setting up their Chinese Bible distribution spot for the night. They handed out more than 13,500 Bibles during Chinese New Year celebrations throughout Asia, but no one notices the little boy, who reaches his pudgy arms into the box and pulls out a Bible and red packet of literature.

LifeWay women debut new resources

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (LCR)—LifeWay Women have for years reached thousands of women through events such as Living Proof Live with Beth Moore; Going Beyond with Priscilla Shirer; Deeper Still with Moore, Shirer and Kay Arthur; You and Your Girl with Vicki Courtney; and others. Now, they have gone live with the premier of LifeWay Women Live, a monthly webcast with the goal of “reaching women everywhere.”

LifeWay Women Live is hosted by Chris Adams, LifeWay’s senior lead women’s ministry specialist; Paige Greene, LifeWay’s director of women’s training and events; and Pam Case, director of LifeWay Women.

SBC president addresses state paper meeting

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (TEXAN)—Southern Baptists must stop idolizing materialism if they are to return to their first love of Jesus Christ, declared Southern Baptist Convention President Bryant Wright in speaking to the Association of Baptist State Papers Feb. 16. It’s a focus he has shared across the country in calling for biblical stewardship.

“A radical reprioritization of our commitment to the Great Commission begins with the individual,” Wright said, using his own congregation at Johnson Ferry Baptist Church in Marietta, Ga., as an example. “The number [of members] that gives nothing to the Lord’s work is astounding.”

Shocking videos show Planned Parenthood response to sex trafficking

WASHINGTON (BP)—Another series of videos secretly recorded at Planned Parenthood clinics—in this case apparently showing its employees agreeing to aid sex traffickers whose prostitutes are in their early teens—has renewed calls for the federal government to defund the country’s largest abortion provider.

From Feb. 1 to 8, the pro-life organization Live Action released video footage from hidden-camera investigations at six clinics that showed Planned Parenthood staff signaling cooperation with a self-described pimp in testing for sexually transmitted diseases, and providing birth control and/or abortions for his alleged, under-age sex workers. The pimp and, in some cases, a prostitute who accompanied him to the clinics were actors doing undercover work for Live Action.

‘Courageous’ previews in Jacksonville

“Courageous,” another stirring creation by Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Ga., the makers of “Fireproof,” previewed to a full auditorium Jan. 29 at the 25th annual Pastors’ Conference at First Baptist Church in Jacksonville.

Due in theaters Sept. 30, Courageous unleashed a powerful message with heart stopping intensity that had folks laughing, crying and applauding.

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