A little over a year ago, Highland appointed a task force with the responsibility of looking into the Affiliate/Membership policy of the new HBC by-laws. We quickly found a myriad of questions in the space between how many Baptist churches interpret the collection of verses that echo Matthew 28:19’s charge to, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (NIV) and the collection of verses that call for one united body of Christ as seen in Galatians 5:6, “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love” (NIV).
As a response to these and other questions of history and theology that have arisen, the Affiliates Task Force is excited to invite you to an educational event on January 27 immediately following the 11:00 a.m. service. Dr. Bill Leonard will lead us in a discussion on the history of Baptists and baptism that will also include the voices of Dr. Jim Somerville of First Baptist Church of Richmond, Virginia, and Dr. James Leo Garrett of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. These three gentlemen represent a wide range of backgrounds and offer a variety of perspectives on the history and current practice of baptism in the Baptist church.
This is not an official business meeting – no proposals will be made and no votes will be cast. We simply hope to provide an opportunity for us all to learn together. This event will be followed by a Congregational Conversation on February 24th that again will see no voting, but will simply allow us more time to process and discuss these ideas together.
Ryan Davis, Affiliate/Member Task Force Chair