We, the Minnesota State Baptist Convention, continue to be infuriated at the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department. Now, we are reliving the unconscionable act of that horrible day as we hear, during the trial of Derrick Chauvin, over and over another Black man repeat to police officers that “I can’t breathe,” while his life was prematurely taken from him, his family, and his friends. Yet, we realize and are in constant prayer to our Father in Heaven that His will for justice.
As we relive the horrible death of George Floyd through the trial, another young black man’s life has been tragically ended by the hands of another Officer of the Law. On April 11, 2021 in the afternoon, after being pulled over by Brooklyn Center Police Officers, 20-year old Daunte Wright was shot and killed by a police officer of the Brooklyn Center Police Department. The report and the video reveal that the officer was irresponsible.
It seems unreal how these horrible incidences continue to happen. The pain does not lessen with each incidence. But, the pain deepens even the more.
It seems senseless how we continue to witness such blatant unheard of incidences. We, as believers of God the Father, can not help but to ask “WHY”? It seems we are suiting up for a race we were never intended to win. Then, we are reassured in Micah 6:8, which comforts and guides us in troubled times to walk humbly and let God lead all our actions:
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.
Supported by our leadership with the National Baptist Convention, as we walk humbly and allowing the leadership of our God, we believe that the time is now to address the systematic issues of White Supremacy and police brutality in our communities. The Minnesota State Baptist Convention believe in the law of God and the law of the land. We demand that justice be done and nobody, even the police officer, should not be exempt from accountability and responsibility.
Our hearts are sadden about these events. We grieve with the families of young Daunte Wright and George Floyd. We are praying that our protests are peaceful and effective. We will do everything we can to meet the needs of the people who are impacted.
President, Dr. Billy G. Russell
Minnesota State Baptist Convention, Inc.
Rev. Dr. Runney D. Patterson, Sr.
Vice-President At Large
Minnesota State Baptist Convention
Statement from the Minnesota State Baptist Convention
We, the Minnesota State Baptist Convention, continue to be infuriated at the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department. Now, we are reliving the unconscionable act of that horrible day as we hear, during the trial of Derrick Chauvin, over and over another Black man repeat to police officers that “I can’t breathe,” while his life was prematurely taken from him, his family, and his friends. Yet, we realize and are in constant prayer to our Father in Heaven that His will for justice. Read More…
Marriage: A Covenant of Mutual Love
Adult 1 Sunday School Class Ephesians 5:21-33 August 25, 2019
Theme: In an ever-changing and increasingly complex society, the focus on self-indulgence has endangered a healthy concept of family. How do we make commitment to God and family central to our well-being? Paul says a committed relationship must be sought in which husbands, wives, and children love, honor, and respect both God and one another.
The interpretation of the verses is in bold print which follows the original verse in regular print.
Ephesians 5:21, 22, 23, and 24; “Submitting ourselves one to another in the fear of God. 22. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.”
Paul tries to illustrate the relationship of a ‘Christian wife” to her “Christian husband” and makes it analogous to the Church’s relationship to Christ. Christ is the head of the Church, also known as the “Body of Christ” and to which the “body” is to submit to Christ. Christ is the saviour of the “body”, for He gave up His earthly life to save us from our sins and reconciled us back to God. He did this because He loved us, cared for us, and protected us. When He left this earthly realm, He left the Holy Spirit to watch over us and to comfort us. Now with that understanding, Paul states that wives (in this context throughout will mean Christian wives) are to submit to their husbands as the Church submits to Christ. “Submit” can be misinterpreted, it does not mean a dominance of one over the other, nor a master / slave relationship, but boundaries of love and respect that glorifies God.
* v.25, 26, 27, and 28, “ Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26. That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27. That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.”
Now Paul discusses the responsibility of the husband (denotes Christian husband for this lesson). The analogy continues. Like Christ, husbands love your wives as Christ loved the Church with agape (unconditional) love. He, as well as his wife, love unconditionally and subordinate his or her own desires, actions, and personality for the benefit of others in the relationship. This is based on virtues that encourage people to act by saving, building, and restoring others in love. Sanctify and cleanse by the word means to apply the Gospel to marriage and live the life that God would have us to live. Husbands should follow the examples of Christ who unconditionally and sacrificially served the spiritual, physical, psychological, emotional, economic, and material needs of His “Bride”, the church. Men could therefore do the same for their brides, their wives. This should not be overstated in a marriage relationship that the wives should over depend on their husbands for everything. They must act as a team in accordance to the Word. God has given the church spiritual and moral responsibilities with free will. These must be carried out with maturity and decorum. Paul says that by loving your wife as your own body, denotes that any rational person would not harm his own body, thus he says to treat your wife as you would your own body.
* vs 29 and 30, “For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30. For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.”
Verse 29 reiterates the previous verse in stating that husbands are responsible for his wife’s wellbeing, as Christ plays a significant part in the “Body”, the church in its wellbeing. Adam said about Eve, “that she was bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh.”
* vs 31 and 32, “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.”
Verse 31 reiterates Genesis 2:24 that says, “That a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be as one flesh.” This is God’s initial statement in the Scriptures regarding marriage. The marriage commitment takes precedence over every other human relationship. One flesh means closely joined. This is the covenantal heterosexual, marital relations and which excludes polygamy and adultery. True love is evidenced when husbands and wives have this spiritual, emotional, and physical oneness. Love is more than family affection or sexual passion. It is a deliberate attitude leading to actions that concerns itself with another’s wellbeing. The mystery to many is that Paul calls a divine ordinance graciously and lovingly is designed for mutual satisfaction and delight.
* v.33, “Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.”
It summarizes all the preceding verses. Husband love your wives, and wives reverence their husbands as God has ordained. The greater perspective is that if we all could live a loving and respectful life, and that template is used by humankind, then this would be a better world in which to live.
Alpha and Omega
Adult 1 Sunday School Class Revelation 22:12-21 November 27, 2016
Theme: People recognize that all things have a beginning and an end. What is the source and final purpose of human life? The book of Revelation affirms that God, who is the Alpha and Omega, controls all things.
Please interpret the meaning of the following verses.
The interpretation of the verses is in bold print which follows the original verse in regular print.
Revelation 22:12” And behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” A simple verse, but with so much intrinsic meaning. “…Come quickly…” refers to Christ’s return at the end times. This part of the verse means that no one knows the time or the day, but we must be ready. The author uses a metaphor of Christ as the bridegroom and we, the church, are the bride waiting for our groom to return. “… my reward is with me…” meaning that all believers will be rewarded for their works done in His name, but recognizing that is by faith and not works that we will live eternally with Our Savior. It is by God’s grace and our faith that God grants us salvation to eternal life, and not by the works that we do. “…to grant every man according as his work shall be.” This means that once you are SAVED, Christ will reward you according to your works, but recognizing that those works did not get you into the eternal Kingdom.
v.13. “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.” The author quotes Christ who uses the first and last letters of the 24 letter Greek alphabet, demonstrating that nothing came before Him nor will anything come after Him, and all things between them are His. He holds the reigns on our existence. The Bible uses the phrases, “everlasting to everlasting”; “yesterday, today, and tomorrow”; “and life without end” to illustrate His dirty.
v.14 and 15. “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. 15. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.” When Christ returns, He will separate the saved from the unsaved. The saved will have many rights, such as to eat from the tree of life in the city of the New Jerusalem, while the unsaved represented in verse 15 as dogs, sorcerers, and etc. They will be on the outside of the city. Adam and Eve were not allowed to each from the “tree of life”; but those who obeyed Jesus’ Commandments, it would be available to them.
v.16. “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches, I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” Here the author quotes Jesus as saying that He sent His message to the 7 churches of Asia minor (now Turkey). Jesus makes the astounding statement that He is the root and offspring of King David. Jesus shows His deity that He created David, and His humanity as the son of David. Here Jesus uses the metaphor of the bright and morning star symbolizes its appearance to bring light (knowledge/wisdom) to the night of a dark (ignorant/disobedient) world.
v.17. “And the Spirit and the bride says, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” While waiting for Christ, the bridegroom to return, the Holy Spirit and the bride, invite the unsaved to partake in the water of life, and accept Christ. Those who do, will thirst no more and find salvation through Jesus Christ.
v.18 and 19. “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book. If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 19. And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” Here the Lord gives a warning to anyone who would change the words or use this book for his own purposes will meet His wrath. Those who would add to the Book, God will add unto him the plagues written in the Book; while those who subtract from it, God shall take away his part out of the book of life.
v.20. “He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly, Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” Christ’s parting words following His resurrection was that he would return, but until then He would send the Comforter who is the Holy Spirit He is to give us faith and hope until He returns. When He does return, it will be the end to all of those who reject Him. The Spirit is our Comforter, Teacher (of truth), and will be with us until He returns.
v.21. “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.” The Revelation of Jesus Christ ends as it began as to who Christ was, and what it would be like upon His return. The book of Revelation is apocalyptic literature filled with symbols, prophecy, unseen future events or unseen realms of heaven and hell. This literature contains mysterious language and imagery which could have various meanings. When Christ left earth, He went to prepare a place for us and that one day He would return. He left us His grace, the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.