Baptist Convention chief says people need to read and believe God’s Word again
Bahamians need a reawakening and a behavior transplant, according to Reverend Lloyd C. Smith, president of the Bahamas National Baptist Missionary & Educational Convention.
“We need to read and believe God’s Word again,” said Smith.
Smith kicked off the 60 Annual Baptist Month with a call for “healing in the land” which he said begins at the house of God and with the people of God.
“The solution lies with us. The resolution must be prompted by us,” said Smith. “We must stand out from them. We must be a people of God. We must declare God’s name, display God’s grace, manifest God’s character, and represent God’s kingdom. It starts with us. Restoration is initiated by us.”
Smith said it’s time for believers to humble themselves, pray and seek God’s face.
“It’s time to return to God’s altar. It’s time we rekindle the fire again. It’s time we reconstruct the foundation. It’s time we renew our vows to the Lord. Don’t change divine perception. It’s revival time. We need to get back what we lost. We need to stir up what has died out. We need to come back to the Lord. We need to come back to church. We need to come back to worship. We need to come back to Bible study. We need to come back to prayer service. We need to sing again. We need to serve again. We need to shout again. We need to read and believe God’s Word again.”
Smith who is also pastor of Mount Horeb Baptist Church spoke on the theme “Do Not Change Divine Perception” as he called for a “revival” – meetings that he said are meant to re-ignite faith and commitment in the hearts and lives of people who are already a professed people of God, stir up their zeal and inflame their passion. And he said repentance is the goal of revival, one of which he said is needed now.
“We’re living in perilous times. Sin plagues the land. Wickedness abounds. Iniquity is widespread. Immorality is commonplace, even among the people of God. Everywhere you look, people are deserting the principles of God. We’re living in the last days when the Bible says: ‘Men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.’”
He said the Bible warns that people are to turn away from such, but instead are becoming like them.
“It’s getting to the point where there is no distinction between sinner and saint. It’s getting to the point where, instead of renouncing the ways of the world, God’s people are embracing the ways of the world. We are adopting and adapting the ways of the world. We are assimilating and incorporating the ways of the world within our lives and even in our churches. It’s getting to the point where wrong has become right and what is righteous is looked upon as something antiquated or obsolete. It’s getting to the point where speaking out against sin, as outlined in the Bible, is frowned upon and labeled as outdated dogmatic rhetoric that is unwelcomed by the world and unpopular in the church.”
The Baptist Convention president called for people to return to God and revisit the way of holiness.
He said reformation and transformation are needed.
“As a people of God we’ve strayed away, we’ve abandoned our post, we’ve compromised our faith [and] message. We’ve compromised our anointing. We are to be in the world but not of the world, yet, we’re in the world and like the world.”
He said hatred had increased, racism amplified, sexism proliferated and classism intensified.
“God’s Commandments were publicly displayed and God’s name was devoutly respected. But we’ve digressed and we’ve departed, and we’ve deviated from God’s path. We’ve swerved to the left and we’ve swerved to the right. We’ve veered to the side of sin and we’ve changed directions towards destruction. This is a wicked world. This is a mean world. This is a vile world. This is an iniquitous world,” he said.
Smith said the solution lies with God’s people and the resolution must be prompted by his people.
He told Baptists that they must come out from among them, that they must stand out from them, and be a people of God. He said they must declare God’s name, display God’s grace, manifest God’s character, and represent God’s kingdom.
“It starts with us. Restoration is initiated by us. It’s time to pray. It’s time to seek God’s face. It’s time to give up sin. It’s time to return to God’s altar. It’s time we rekindle the fire again. It’s time we reconstruct the foundation. It’s time we renew our vows to the Lord. We need to fall in love again. It’s revival time. We need to get back what we lost. We need to stir up what has died out.”
Lloyd called for people to return to church and worship, and to Bible study. He encouraged people to sing again and to serve again.
Baptist month continues with the president’s inaugural ball on Friday, October 19 at the William Thompson Auditorium, Jean Street; as well as the Baptist Day Parade on Sunday, October 21 which will be held in honor of Reverend William Thompson. Participants will assemble at 2 p.m. at Windsor Park, traveling east on Wulff Road, south on Marathon Road, ending at R.M. Bailey park.
Shavaughn was appointed as the Lifestyles Editor a few years later.