Sunday, June 24, 2007

Welcome to Amazing Grace Over Florida!

Greetings and welcome to this new blog dedicated to tracking what the Lord is doing through the Florida Baptist Truth Project. Our intention is to send out copies of the Amazing Grace DVD to every Southern Baptist pastor in the state of Florida (if you want to purchase the DVD for yourself, you can do so here). We are doing this to provide a point of balance and contrast to a mailing that those pastors received two weeks ago from the Florida Baptist Convention state offices. The Executive Director of the Florida Baptist Convention mailed out CDs containing a sermon series by Dr. Jerry Vines entitled, "Baptist Battles." Included in that series is a sermon Dr. Vines preached last year called, "Calvinism: A Baptist and His Election." Unfortunately, that message is filled with misrepresentations of what those of us who stand with Charles Spurgeon, James Boyce, P. H. Mell, John Dagg and other great former Baptist leaders actually believe.

Fortunately, because of God's good gifts to us in modern technology, Florida Baptist pastors do not have to be left with only a skewed perspective on the issues in question. Through use of the internet and DVDs, the rest of the story can be made available rather easily. Several pastors and churches in Florida have decided to combine efforts to send a copy of the Amazing Grace DVD to Florida Southern Baptist pastors. This DVD presentation contains over 4 hours of beautifully produced information on the history and theology of Calvinism. The cost of this project is only $20,000. Unlike those who mailed out Dr. Vines' sermons, we do not have access to monies from the Florida Baptist Foundation. Therefore, we are relying on God to stir up the hearts of His people who care about an accurate representation of these issues to fund this project.

Riverbend Church of Ormond Beach, Florida, under the leadership of Dr. Roy Hargrave, has offered to match up to $5000 that is given by July 8. That means that your gift can be doubled if you give in the next two weeks. Let me encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity by making a donation to cover Florida with Amazing Grace as the Lord enables you to do so.

A special fund has been set up to facilitate gifts for this purpose. You may send your donations to:

Founders Ministries
POB 150931
Cape Coral, FL 33915
ATTN: Florida Baptist Truth Project

Or, you may donate online using the link below.You may also contribute online by using the button below.

Most importantly, please join us in praying and fasting about this oppportunity. Can you imagine what would happen if the 2-3000 Florida pastors who receive this DVD watch it carefully, prayerfully and with an open Bible? If the Lord is pleased to use this effort to dispel the common caricatures of the doctrines of grace, what a wonderful blessing that will be. Better still, if many of our brothers become convinced from the Scriptures that these doctrines are nothing less than a proper understanding of God's Word!

The weeks between June 24-July 31 have been designated as a specific time of prayer and fasting for this effort. Would you consider committing yourself to praying daily during this time for the Lord to own these efforts for His glory? Perhaps you could set aside one day each week to fast and pray for this. Encourage others to join you. Lead your church to be in prayer over this opportunity.

This blog has been established to provide an opportunity for us to discuss how the Lord is working in and through all these events. Already, I have heard from one pastor who has been given an open door to hold Bible studies with family members because of this and other related events in the state of Florida. Many others have ordered the DVD for themselves and have been greatly helped by the teaching they received from it.

Feel free to leave comments here about your commitment to this project or what God is doing in your life and church as we partner together in this important effort.

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7 Comments:

At June 25, 2007 3:40 PM , Pastor Klay said...

All I can think about are these words:

"As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive." Gen. 50.20

What an open door the Lord has set before us!

 
At June 25, 2007 4:03 PM , Scott Hill said...

Tom, I am glad you have taken on this project. Especially given the fact that the Amazing Grace video is a much better argument for Calvinism than Dr. Vines sermon is against it.

 
At June 27, 2007 7:38 AM , G. Alford said...

Tom,

I will be asking my Executive Committee to send a financial gift to help with this effort at our next meeting on July 8th…

I would like to recommend the idea of starting a Founders Newspaper… The State Papers which are mailed to all the churches in each state often do a great injustice to the issues that are important to us…

I am not recommending that a Founders Newspaper be mailed to every church in every state right away… but that it be made available for subscription… and ask those churches who wish to do so to fund subscriptions for “non hostile” churches in their area…

In response to all the organized attacks that have gone on lately I truly believe this is an idea whose time has come.

Grace to all,

 
At June 27, 2007 12:06 PM , Martin said...

I join with the others here in saying thank you to Tom Ascol for taking on this very important issue. It is time that the misunderstandings and misrepresentations be corrected.

God Bless You!

Martin.

 
At June 27, 2007 4:52 PM , davidinflorida said...

Pastor Klay,

Who is it that meant evil against you? Dr Vines? The FBC? Who?

 
At June 28, 2007 5:59 AM , Tom said...

Brothers,

Thanks for your encouragement and support of this effort. The Lord is stirring people to support this effort with prayer and finances.

Greg, the newspaper idea is certainly intriguing. Most print papers are struggling to stay viable due to the internet. There may be ways to harness the web more effectively to fulfill the purpose you have in mind.

David,
Good point. I don't think Klay meant to suggest that those associated with the CDs mailed out had an evil intent to do harm (though we know that the devil loves to do just that) but rather that this mailing, which could have had such a negative impact is being used by God to accomplish great good.

Maybe Romans 8:28 would have been a better choice of verses to cite.

I am at the Founders Conference and will have an update on the project when I return next week.

 
At October 16, 2007 10:57 AM , Jay Rogers said...

Just a head up on a special proce for Amazing Grace: The History and Theology of Calvinism. You can get this product at a significant discount of $12.95 at:

http://theapologeticsgroup.com
http://forerunner.com
http://amazon.com

 

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