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Benjamin Hawkins

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Japanese gang member now a minister & commissioner

TROY, Mo. (BP) -- Had it not been for the faithfulness of Southern Baptist missionaries, former Japanese gang member Jonathan Hayashi may have never found salvation, a call to ministry -- or, most recently, a seat on the Missouri Commission on Human Rights. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson appointed 29-year-old Hayashi to the commission on June 17. He was also named as vice chair.

Missouri DR deploys after 17 killed at Branson lake

BRANSON, Mo. –(BP) -- Seventeen people, including children, died yesterday (July 19) after a sudden violent storm capsized a "duck boat" on Table Rock Lake near the tourist hotspot of Branson, Mo. The tragedy prompted a response from Missouri Disaster Relief (DR) today, as well as from other Southern Baptists in the region. Branson is known among tourists for its "duck boats," which can travel both on land and in the water. Two boats were still in the water yesterday at Table Rock Lake, when a fast-moving storm brought winds in excess of 60 mph and caused three-foot waves on the lake. One of the boats was able to make it back to shore but another -- carrying 31 passengers -- struggled amid the waves and was finally capsized.

Reformers urged learning of biblical languages

NASHVILLE (BP) -- Discussions among Southern Baptist seminary professors about the importance of the biblical languages is nothing new. In fact, it's simply the continuation of a conversation that began well before the Reformation era. Lively interest in the biblical languages -- that is, Greek and Hebrew -- was "in the air" when Martin Luther called for the reform of the church 500 years ago, noted Timothy George, dean of the Beeson Divinity School at Samford University in Birmingham, Ala.

Greek refresher said to make sermons ‘exciting’

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BP) -- Especially in this information age, pastors and other seminary graduates have no excuse for letting their grasp of New Testament Greek slip away, say Greek scholars at multiple Southern Baptist Convention seminaries. Having a firm grasp of New Testament Greek was the emphasis of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary's Jan. 13-14 Alumni Academy. And it also has been a theme of publications by professors at other Southern Baptist Convention seminaries. "It's never been easier to both maintain and to grow in your Greek skills," Robert ...

Welcome to Saint Louis, Southern Baptist Convention

Southern Baptists should come to Saint Louis this summer “with eyes open and with hearts open,” ready to see where ministry is needed and where God is already at work to transform lives and communities through the Gospel.

Language proves God’s existence, prof says

CLEVELAND, Ga. (BP) -- Evidence for the existence of God is, quite literally, on the tip of your tongue, says Southern Baptist professor Jeremy Lyon. Lyon, associate professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Truett-McConnell College in Cleveland, Ga., and John Baumgardner, a geophysicist who teaches at Southern California Seminary in El Cajon, Calif., argue the existence of language points to the existence of God.

Flooding ‘bigger than people realize’ in Mo. & Ill.

ST. LOUIS (BP) -- The daunting challenge of restoring flood-damaged homes continues to face many families around Missouri and Illinois after widespread flooding wreaked havoc in late December and early January. "It's bigger than people realize," said Joe Banderman, leader of the Missouri Baptist Convention's collegiate relief team. "Unless you're here, it's hard to get an idea of the scope of the flooding."

Pro-marriage prof. faces possible dismissal

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. (BP) -- A tenured, Southern Baptist professor at a university in California could face dismissal for allegedly "retaliating" against a student who complained about his support for traditional marriage. "If I were to use legal terms -- even though this is not a legal proceeding -- I've been convicted but not sentenced," Robert Oscar Lopez, an associate professor of English and classics at California State University-Northridge (CSUN), told Baptist Press. "They said that I was guilty of retaliation, which is a serious charge in academia" -- punishable at CSU by demotion, suspension without pay or dismissal.

Jewish evangelism: Conference spawns reflections

JERUSALEM (BP) -- An international conference on Jewish evangelism provided an occasion for Christians to reflect on why they should share the Gospel with ethnic Jews. Convening in Jerusalem, the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism's 10th International Conference on Jewish Evangelism included some 200 Jewish evangelists from six continents. Participants strategized about the best methods for communicating the Gospel to Jews.

Satanist statue prompts Michigan Bapt. response

DETROIT, Mich. (BP) -- Michigan Baptists will not waver in their efforts to spread the Gospel throughout their state, even after The Satanic Temple (TST) has unveiled a bronze, 9-foot-tall statue of Baphomet in Detroit, says Tim Patterson, a Baptist leader in the state. "People have been worshipping Satan since Satan fell from heaven," Patterson, executive director for the Baptist State Convention of Michigan, said. "That is nothing new at all. I think what is new about it is the public way it is being portrayed in the media.