During the Feb.18 meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee, Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, told Executive Committee members he believes the calling of the convention is to have a singular focus on seeing people come to faith in Christ.
It appears Page has done a great job reading and interpreting the Bible. All Southern Baptists would do well to follow his lead. Keeping the most important thing the most important is the key to our calling as Christians. That calling was made very clear in Matthew 28:19-20, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
In an age of tit-for-tat, denominational bickering and doctrinal posturing, it is refreshing to hear from a Southern Baptist leader that gets it. Anything that distracts from reaching a lost world with the Gospel of Christ is a tragedy.
Certainly doctrine is critical, our denomination is important and, yes, our opinions do matter, but when these issues take us away from seeing people come to know Jesus, we need to pause and take a hard look at whether we are on the right page.
During his address Page said. “Paul the apostle had a singular focus. He said it well in 1 Corinthians 2:2 when he said, ‘I am determined to know nothing among you except Christ and Christ crucified.’ There was no agenda other than Christ and Christ crucified. I believe that singular focus gave him a name that was known in hell. And I ask you tonight, my brothers and sisters, is your name known in hell? I want the demons of hell to know who we are, not because of any good thing-not because of anything we have done-but because we are lifting high the name of Jesus Christ and Christ crucified.
“I beg of you to join with me in a singular focus on the Kingdom of God and on Christ and Christ crucified,” Page said. “That’s why I believe the demons said, ‘Jesus we know and Paul we recognize, but who in the world are you?’ May they never ask that question about Southern Baptists in the future. May they never, ever wonder who we are. We pray that they will know our names and get it spelled right. Let’s never lose that focus. We are a Jesus convention, and we are here to promote the Kingdom of God on this Earth.”
Oklahoma Baptists must continue to focus on reaching the lost. The devil delights in bringing distraction. We must be alert to the schemes on the enemy. We must not lose our fervor for the lost. We cannot allow matters of opinion to hinder our passion for what is critical. Rather than calculate votes and rally allies, it is time we refocus our lenses on the lost among us. While we strategize and struggle over items of lesser value, the precious souls of men are lost. Page was right. It’s time we major on the majors and minor on the minors.