MARIETTA — With 804 messengers having registered by 6 p.m. on Nov. 9, the 194th annual session of the Georgia Baptist Convention was called into order at Roswell Street Baptist Church here.
The meeting was preceded and concluded with a Coffee Shop Talk by IMB Missionary Edmund Brannen, who informally discussed his ministry and enlisted individuals to pray for the lost on the field where he serves. The Coffee Shop Talk was introduced last year and is a popular venue where informal and inspirational conversation can occur in a relaxed setting.
Perry Sapp, church administrator at the host congregation, welcomed messengers to the church and David Suddath, assistant associational missionary for Noonday Baptist Association, extended greetings to those present from the Association.
Roswell Street is currently without a pastor following the resignation of Ernest Easley who resigned to lead the evangelism department at Union University in Jackson, TN.
Hattaway delivers President’s Sermon
Convention President Don Hattaway delivered the President’s Sermon, drawn from the book of Jonah. Hattaway likened modern day Georgia to ancient Nineveh and its penchant for perverted lifestyles. He then showed how God could use “a disobedient preacher” to reach a civilization which the preacher thought to be beyond saving.
“We serve a God who can break the chains of the enemy and God can do it again here in Georgia,” he told the crowd as he called everyone … preachers as well as laity … to reach their state for Christ.
Snapp presents Missionary Sermon
Barry Snapp, pastor of Victory Baptist Church in Rockmart, delivered the Missionary Sermon based on John 1 and titled “Bring Them to Jesus.”
Snapp urged those present to take the Gospel to those in their communities.
“If you are willing to bring someone to Jesus and I am willing to bring someone to Jesus, I believe we will make a tremendous impact in Georgia.
“Do you realize that the first two letters in “Gospel” are “go” and the first two letters in “God” are “go”? You can’t share the Gospel without going to where the lost are,” he stated.
Messengers heard reports from Southern Baptist agency heads and GBC Executive Director J. Robert White conducted an interview with GBC agency leaders from Baptist Village, Baptist Retirement Communities, and Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes.
Mike Griffin, GBC public affairs representative, delivered a video overview of his ministry area; former GBC presidents were recognized; and Keith and Kristyn Getty provided special music.
Robert E. Wilson, pastor of Light of the Word in Morrow, closed the first session with a benediction.