March 11-12 Bible Baptist Church, Houston, MO.
There was a good crowd Monday evening, including folk from neighboring churches. Pastor Barbee spoke of how this was the first preacher’s meetings his church has hosted and how enthusiastically the people had volunteered to prepare for it. They had begun a revival meeting with Bro. Joe Decker yesterday and Bro. Tim Knutson, leading the music. A good representation of preachers were present to introduce themselves.
Pastor Barbee then introduced Bro. Decker to the pulpit. He directed us to Jeremiah 6:1-19 and read it. Giving a description of the situation of Jerusalem and Judah in that day, he told how Babylon had already began its march towards the land and how Jeremiah was warning the people of the impending judgement of God. Bro. Decker had a unique way of picturing those happenings in a frame of our present world. Some of the comparisons were humorous if they wern’t so serious. He told how that the northern kindom had been ransacked while the people of Judah looked on, and now the people of Judah were threatened with a similar ransacking yet unconcerned and beligerent.
From the least to the greatest, from the prophet to the priest, the people were obstinent against the warnings of the prophet of God. Bro. Decker said that along with several sever sayings in the word of God, he counted among the severest verse 16. The prophet was offering an opportunity to be able to walk above the coming judment of the Babylonians, but the people answered, “We will not walk therein!” Of course, Bro. Decker very easily applied his message to the conditions of our present world. This was a great message.
Tuesday morning the folks of the church fixed a southern Missouri breakfast leaving nothing to be desired.
The morning service was opened with prayer and the introduction of preachers (again a good turnout.) Bro. Matt Dedmon was the song leader for the day. A congregational and a special by Derek Eckles, then Pastor Barbee introduced an unusual speaker. Bro. Richard Perkins, Pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cleveland, Oklahoma. Bro. Perkins is a native of Houston, having left there several years ago for Bible School. He led us to Acts 4:23-30. He asked two questions. “What does God look like?” and “Do we look like God?” He then used aspects of the text to show how the disciples view God and what they were trusting Him to do. He then gave 4 things that will allow us to project God’s image in our ministry. We must acknowlege: 1. God is supreme. 2. That some of our audience will reject God. 3. God has his will for us. 4. Our absolute dependence upon his power and provision. This was an excellent message from a young pastor.
The second preacher for the morning was Bro. Kent Hogan, Pastor of the Bible Baptist Church in Carthage, MO. He took us to Jeremiah 17:1-10. From the text, he told us that all of us progress through life making choices. Jeremiah likened the people of Judah to two different forms of plant life. For the most part they are like heath, a plant that grows wild in desert places. It has no usefulness and provides no sustenence. A few are like the tree planted by the waters, that prospers and brings forth fruit. Showing how the text in Jeremiah, compares to Psalms 1, he used several illustrations and examples to show that we in todays multi-faceted world make choices that are either heath like or tree like. The heath results in God’s curses while the tree results in God’s blessings. These meetings allow us to experience life’s experiences through the experience of others if we will listen and learn. Bro. Hogan has a wonderful ability of preaching the sharp two edged sword passages as though they were teflon coated. Very good message.
One of the scheduled preachers had to cancel because of illness, so we had several minutes of unscheduled fellowship time. This was very good. I am so thankful that we as a preacher group are also preacher friends. Two or three new preachers attended this meeting and they melded right in.
Bro. Sam Davison, President of Heartland Baptist College in Oklahoma City, was the final preacher of the day. With a smile on his face, he also invited us to Jeremiah. The third preacher to do so in this meeting. He took us to chapter 11:11-12:2. Pointing out that this text was a major turning point in Jeremiah’s life partly because of the death of King Josiah. God was dealing with him personally, preparing him for the fact that he also would be experiencing the effects of God’s coming judgments upon Judah. the title of the message was, “Lord, we need to talk!!” At this point, Bro. Davison reminded us of some laws of God. First, the wicked don’t always suffer in this life. Second, rightous people don’t always prosper in this life. Jeremiah was suffering rejection in his own world, possibly involving his own cousins. God was making sure that he had abiding strength, because worse times were coming. Bro. Davison applied that to us today, giving some indications that our times may be more serious in the near future, but eventually God will bless us for standing strong and we will see the ultimate judgement of the rejecting world. His message capped the day.
Again the church folks put on a delicious meal. Bro. & Mrs. Barbee had put their whole heart into the meeting, and their people wholeheartedly joined in.
– Stan Metts