Kingdom Forever – the SBC Plans out General Assembly

The Southern Baptist Convention released the theme and schedule of their upcoming annual general convention slated for June 15-16 in Indianapolis, on April 21, 2004. The theme, “Kingdom Forever” follows the Empowering Kingdom Growth initiative that began in 2002.

"The Southern Baptist Convention is an opportunity for us to share with the world what God is doing in our lives, in our churches and through the people known as Southern Baptists," SBC President Jack Graham said. "… This gathering will challenge us all to renew our passion for the Great Commission and issues of eternal impact."

Jack Graham, who has served his second one-year term, will turn the presidency over to Bobby Welch, pastor of First Baptist Church in Daytona Beach, Fla. Graham’s final address as president will be made at 11:10 am on Tuesday, June 15.

In addition to Graham’s presidential address, several other figures will deliver keynote speeches, including David Jeremiah, senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in California. Jay Strack, president of Student Leadership University in Florida, will speak at 8:38 that night, with a kingdom growth challenge. Roy J. Fish, evangelism professor at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, will deliver the third Kingdom Challenge message on Wednesday, along with renown evangelist Franklin Graham ending the night at 8:53 p.m.

"Southern Baptists of Indiana are excited about hosting our larger Southern Baptist family for the convention meeting in Indianapolis this June," Stephen P. Davis, executive director of the State Convention of Baptist in Indiana, said. "... People all over the mid-west will discover what Southern Baptists are all about, so all of our north central state conventions will benefit. And best of all, Hoosier hospitality will shower our Southern Baptist family with Christian love."

Some of the important issues that will be discussed and resolved includes the membership at the Baptist World Alliance. Last December, a study committee recommended the SBC withdraw all membership and funding to the nationwide body of Baptist believers. Last month, the executive committee members approved the split, and this June conference is where the final decision is called.

The delegates will also vote on the sole membership of the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. The seminary is the only SBC entity that took its own corporate model of membership. Recently New Orleans trustees voted to present 2 alternatives to messengers in 2005 instead of adopting the recommendation of the Executive Committee to name the convention as sole member of the seminary's corporation.

The weeklong event will also have many events catered toward youth members of the family, and the week prior to the convention will be dedicated to “crossover Indiana” – an evangelism focus strategy that uses block parties, door to door visits and other evangelistic efforts to spread the word.

"We are so fortunate to have the pre-convention activities of Crossover, which will greatly boost God's kingdom work here," Davis, the Indiana Baptist official, said. "Our pastors and churches are very appreciative of the host of volunteers who will be arriving early to help us penetrate the Indianapolis area and beyond with a tremendous evangelistic effort. We are expecting an increase in new church starts as a result."

The following is the schedule of events planned for the delegates to the 2004 Indiana conference, as released by the Baptist Press – the SBC’s news agency.


8:00 Inspirational Music: Prestonwood Choir and Orchestra, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, Texas -- R. Todd Bell, convention music director, minister of music & worship

8:10 Congregational Praise and Worship: Steve White, associate pastor of praise and worship, Cottage Hill Baptist Church, Mobile, Ala.

8:15 Call to Order: Jack Graham, president, Southern Baptist Convention; pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, Texas

Registration Report and Constitution of the Convention: James H. (Jim) Wells, SBC registration secretary; director of missions, Tri County Baptist Association, Highlandville, Mo.

8:20 Prayer: Bruce D. Aubrey, pastor, Northside Baptist Church, Liverpool, N.Y.

8:25 Committee on Order of Business (First Report): Michael K. (Mike) Whitehead, chairman, First Baptist Church, Raytown, Mo.

8:30 Welcome: Stephen P. (Steve) Davis, executive director-treasurer, State Convention of Baptists in Indiana, Indianapolis, Ind.

8:40 Announcement of Committee on Committees, Credentials, Resolutions, and Tellers: Jack Graham

8:45 Introduction of Motions

9:05 Congregational Praise and Worship: R. Todd Bell

9:10 Music Feature: Prestonwood Choir and Orchestra

9:15 Special Guest Address

9:45 Local Arrangements Committee Presentation: John R. (Jack) Wilkerson, vice president for business and finance, Executive Committee, Nashville, Tenn.

9:50 Crossover Report: Robert E. (Bob) Reccord, president, North American Mission Board, Alpharetta, Ga.

9:55 Executive Committee Report (Part 1): Morris H. Chapman, president, Nashville, Tenn.

10:45 Kingdom Challenge Video

10:49 Committee on Nominations Report: J. Keet Lewis, chairman, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, Texas

10:59 Congregational Praise and Worship: R. Todd Bell

11:04 Worship in Music: Prestonwood Choir and Orchestra

11:09 Introduction of the President’s Address: O. S. Hawkins, president, Annuity Board, Dallas, Texas

President’s Address: Jack Graham

11:54 Benediction: David McKinley, teaching pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church,
Plano, Texas


1:00 Inspirational Music: “This Hope,” vocal group, First Baptist Church
Woodstock, Ga.

1:10 Prayer: Calvin R. Wittman, pastor, Applewood Baptist Church, Wheat Ridge, Colo.

1:15 Business: Committee on Order of Business (Second Report): Michael K. (Mike) Whitehead

Referrals/Introduction of Motions

1:30 Executive Committee Report (Part 2): Morris H. Chapman

2:10 Kingdom Challenge Video

2:14 Woman’s Missionary Union Report: Wanda S. Lee, executive director-treasurer, Birmingham, Ala.

2:24 SBC Historical Library and Archives Report: Charles S. (Chuck) Kelley, Jr., chairman, Council of Seminary Presidents, president, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, La.

2:33 Election of Officers (First): Jack Graham

2:48 Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary Report: William O. (Bill) Crews, chancellor, Mill Valley, Calif.

3:03 Congregational Praise and Worship: Scott C. White, senior minister of music and worship, First Baptist Church, Woodstock, Ga.

3:08 Special Music: “This Hope”

3:13 Kingdom Challenge: David Jeremiah, senior pastor, Shadow Mountain Community Church, El Cajon, Calif.

3:33 LifeWay Christian Resources Report: James T. (Jimmy) Draper, president, Nashville, Tenn.

3:43 LifeWay Christian Resources Presentation: James T. (Jimmy) Draper

4:13 Congregational Praise and Worship: Don Nichols, minister of music and worship Westwood Baptist Church, Cleveland, Tenn.

4:18 Kingdom Challenge Video

4:22 Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary Report: Paige Patterson, president, Fort Worth, Texas

4:37 Election of Officers (Second): Jack Graham

4:52 Introduction of New Motions (Last Opportunity): Jack Graham

5:17 Benediction: David Gill, president, Council of Korean Southern Baptist Churches in North America, pastor, Concord Korean Baptist Church, Martinez, Calif.


6:30 Concert of Praise: Prestonwood Choir and Orchestra

6:40 Prayer: J. Mauricio Vargas, multicultural catalytic missionary, Missouri Baptist Convention, Jefferson City, Mo.

6:45 Kingdom Challenge Video

6:49 The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission Report: Richard D. Land, president, Nashville, Tenn.

7:09 Election of Officers (Third): Jack Graham

7:19 Business: Committee on Order of Business (Third Report): Michael K. (Mike) Whitehead

7:29 Kingdom Challenge Video

7:33 Congregational Praise and Worship: R. Todd Bell

7:43 Previously Scheduled Business: Jack Graham

8:08 New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary Report: Charles S. (Chuck) Kelley, Jr., president, New Orleans, La.

8:23 Recognition of Former SBC Presidents: Morris H. Chapman

8:33 Music Feature: Prestonwood Choir and Orchestra

8:38 Kingdom Challenge: Jay Strack, president/founder, Student Leadership University, Orlando, Fla.

9:03 Congregational Praise and Worship: R. Todd Bell

9:08 North American Mission Board Report: Robert E. (Bob) Reccord, president, Alpharetta, Ga.

9:18 North American Mission Board Presentation: Robert E. (Bob) Reccord

9:38 Benediction: Philip J. Robertson, senior pastor, Philadelphia Baptist Church, president, Louisiana Baptist Convention, Deville, La.


8:00 Concert of Praise: First Baptist Church Choir and Orchestra, Gardendale, Ala. -- Jamie Parker, minister of worship

8:15 Prayer: Gustavo Suárez, director, mission ministries division, The Baptist Convention of New Mexico, Albuquerque, N.M.

8:20 Kingdom Challenge Video

8:24 American Bible Society: Eugene B. Habecker, president, New York, N.Y.

8:29 Election of Officers (Fourth): Jack Graham

8:39 Business: Committee on Order of Business (Fourth Report): Michael K. (Mike) Whitehead

8:59 Previously Scheduled Business

9:14 Committee on Resolutions (First Report): R. Wittman, chairman, pastor, Applewood Baptist Church, Wheat Ridge, Colo.

9:44 Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Report: R. Albert (Al) Mohler, Jr., president, Louisville, Ky.

9:59 Congregational Praise and Worship: Jeff Brockelman, pastor of worship, Grace Baptist Church, Knoxville, Tenn.

10:04 Music Feature: First Baptist Church Choir and Orchestra, Gardendale, Ala.

10:09 Kingdom Challenge: Roy J. Fish, distinguished professor of evangelism, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas

10:29 Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary Report: R. Philip (Phil) Roberts, president, Kansas City, Mo.

10:44 Election of Officers (Fifth): Jack Graham

10:54 Committee on Committees Report: Stuart Bell, chairman, pastor, First Baptist Church, Centerton, Ark.

11:04 Annuity Board Report: O. S. Hawkins, president, Dallas, Texas

11:19 Congregational Praise and Worship: Jamie Parker

11:24 Music Feature: First Baptist Church Choir and Orchestra, Gardendale, Ala.

11:29 Convention Message: Steve Gaines, pastor, First Baptist Church, Gardendale, Ala.

12:04 Benediction: W. N. (Bud) Lee, music evangelist, Calvary Baptist Church
Blue Springs, Mo.


6:00 Concert of Praise: Prestonwood Praise Band, Prestonwood Baptist Church
Plano, Texas

6:10 Prayer: TBA

6:15 Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary Report: Daniel L. Akin, president, Wake Forest, N.C.

6:30 Kingdom Challenge Video

6:34 Presentation of Outgoing Officers: Morris H. Chapman

6:39 Presentation of New Officers: Morris H. Chapman

6:44 Business: Committee on Order of Business (Fifth Report): Michael K. (Mike) Whitehead

Election of 2005 Convention Sermon Preacher, Alternate, and Music Director

6:54 Previously Scheduled Business: Jack Graham

7:09 Committee on Resolutions (Final Report): Calvin R. Wittman

7:39 Kingdom Challenge Video

7:43 Congregational Praise and Worship: R. Todd Bell

7:53 International Mission Board Report: Jerry A. Rankin, president, Richmond, Va.

8:03 International Mission Board Presentation: Jerry A. Rankin

8:23 Introduction of the Gaither Vocal Band: R. Todd Bell

8:28 Worship with The Gaither Vocal Band: The Gaither Vocal Band and the Liberty University Praise Band, Lynchburg, Va.

8:53 Kingdom Challenge: Franklin Graham, president and CEO, Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Boone, N.C.

9:23 Benediction: Lamar E. Cooper, Sr., executive vice president and provost, Criswell College, Dallas, Texas