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RESOLUTION ON FAMILY WORSHIP

Adopted by the Messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention in annual session on June 16, 2010 in Orlando, FL

WHEREAS, The Bible teaches the spiritual discipline of family worship for the glory of God, the strengthening of the church, and the spiritual nourishment of the family (Deuteronomy 6:1-18; Psalm 78:1-8; Ephesians 4-6); and

WHEREAS, Scripture pictures the Christian home as a place in which parents are instructed to teach and disciple their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Deuteronomy 6:1-18; Ephesians 6:1-4); and

WHEREAS, Family worship has been a cherished Southern Baptist principle reflected in church covenants which have called believers “to maintain family and secret devotions” and “to religiously educate” their children; and

WHEREAS, In recent years, family worship has been emphasized in The Baptist Faith and Message, which states that “Parents are to teach their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical truth”; and

WHEREAS, Southern Baptists have launched major initiatives which have brought to the forefront the need for families to pray, read from the Bible, memorize scripture, and give praise to the Lord within their homes; and

WHEREAS, In 2009, the president of the Southern Baptist Convention included family worship as a key catalyst for a Great Commission resurgence calling on Southern Baptists “to build gospel-saturated homes that see children as a gift from God and as our first and primary mission field”; and

WHEREAS, Family worship is integral to laying a foundation for multi-generational faithfulness to the gospel (Psalm 145:4) and a necessary complement for the strengthening of the local church to fulfill its commission (Matthew 28:18-20); and

WHEREAS, Family worship serves as an important preparation for the corporate worship of the local church on the Lord’s Day (Ephesians 4:11-16; Hebrews 10:25); and
WHEREAS, In recent generations, the act of family worship has been neglected, evidenced by the breakdown of the family in our time; and
WHEREAS, The embracing of the spiritual discipline of family worship in the Christian home has the capacity to nurture stronger families, a stronger church, and a stronger nation; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Orlando, Florida, June 15-16, 2010, encourage churches

and families to rekindle the spiritual discipline of family worship; and

be it further

RESOLVED, That we define family worship as the regular meeting together of a family for a time of prayer and Bible reading, which may include other activities such as scripture memorization, singing spiritual songs and hymns, and discussing biblical truth and Christian mission; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage families to cultivate not only structured times of worship together, but also ongoing intentional and informal conversations about the things of the Lord; and be it further

RESOLVED, That as we call families and churches to embrace family worship, we urge fathers particularly to fulfill their divinely mandated responsibility to lead their families toward spiritual maturity (Ephesians 5:22-6:4; Colossians 3:19-21); and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all parents to consider times of family worship to be an opportunity to introduce their children to the gospel, to train their children to seek the salvation of their friends and neighbors, and to pray for the nations; and be

it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage churches and families to make use of the many resources produced to aid in family worship; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention and their pastors to promote family worship and encourage the families of their congregations to place the highest priority on embracing this foundational spiritual discipline for the well-being of families, the spread of the gospel, the making of disciples, and the glory of God.

For practical resources about how to practice family worship, see

http://www.BiblicalSpirituality.org

HT: Donald Whitney

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Discipleship works most essentially through instruction and imitation. Discipleship works best throughlove. As we lovingly instruct younger believers in the way of godliness and live commendable lives, they grow in Christlikeness by imitating our life and doctrine (see 1 Tim. 4:16).

Instruction: The Bible calls pastors and parents to instruct those given to their charge (Proverbs; Gal. 6:6; Eph. 6:4; 1 Thess. 4:8; 1 Tim. 1:18, 6:3; 2 Tim. 2:25; 4:2). It also calls all believers to instruct one another (Rom. 15:14).

Imitation: Christians are imitators, first of God, then of each other. We grow in God’s grace by listening and imitating. Consider the following passages:

  • “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ” (1 Cor. 11:1);
  • “Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith” (Heb. 13:7);
  • “What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you” (Phil. 4:9);
  • “You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, my persecutions and sufferings” (2 Tim. 3:10);
  • “Beloved, do not imitate evil, but imitate good” (3 John 11).

Love: People will imitate your life even when you don’t love them. But a leader who leads with love presents the best picture of Christ, and people will follow you best when you love them.

Friendship: In a sense, discipleship is simply friendship, but friendship with a Christ-ward direction. What do friends do? They imitate one another. In discipleship, we befriend others to grow in Christlikeness and to help them grow in Christlikeness.

How to be a disciple? (i) Listen and watch how older Christians work, rest, raise a family, deal with conflict, evangelize their neighbors, persevere through trials, serve in the church, or fight against sin. (ii) Imitate them!

Taken from IX Marks “Answers for Church Members” here

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This is a short and helpful video on a biblical mark of the church.  I pray that my Church Boones Creek Baptist Church will be serious and intentional about this as we move towards learning to be discipling and being discipled.

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The Albert Mohler program discusses this topic on the show Should We be Patriots in the Pew?

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I want to give a plug through this video of Joshua Harris giving a plug for his book “Stop Dating The Church” this is a great introduction into understanding the church in the christian’s life and a encouragement to serve and be served in a local body of believers.

You can purchase the book for $9.74 at wtsbooks

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     The group over at New Attitude has written a solid post on the local church. It was written by Ricky Alcantar and is entitled, “Christian, Meet the Local Church.” (How fitting a title for the state of our generation). In the opening paragraph he writes,

In our generation the local church needs an introduction.

The local church is often seen as optional, it’s no longer assumed. It’s more irrelevant than important. It’s a nice accessory for your Christian walk but if you can’t find one…there are more than enough campus ministries, bible studies, breakfasts, or prayer meetings to try.

     This paragraph perfectly reflects the attitude of our generation. As I interact with people on campus, and even in the campus ministry that I’m a part of, I can see such an apathetic attitude towards the importance of the local church in our lives as Christians. Although I am encouraged by the number of college students that really are seeking to serve in and be fed by a local body of believers; it’s such a sanctifying thing when a group of believers are truly seeking the Lord through the main avenue which God intends for us to grow: the local church.

     I want to echo Na and recommend that you listen to Mark Dever’s talk on the importance of the local church. Another great talk from one of the many Na Conferences is Bill Kitrell’s talk, “Compelling Reasons to Take the Gospel to the Campus.” In this talk, Bill Kitrell outlines how the concept of a campus ministry and a local church is not a “pick one or the other” deal but rather they can work together for the glory of God. You can download the message for free here. You can read the post in full and check out Dever’s message here.

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The most recent issue of The Tie, Southern seminarys magazine, is title the Church Without Compromise.  It is different articles regarding the doctrine of the church, I have only read the article on church discipline and would recommend checking that out.  You can read online here .

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