Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Don't Just Be A Monitor - Guest Post by Bill Davis

I was watching a commercial where a bank was being robbed. Everyone turned to the security guard in hopes of seeing him do something. He said: “I am a monitor, I just tell you when a robbery is happening, I don’t stop the robbery.” Then he said: “There’s a robbery going on.”

Another commercial had a man in a dentist chair where the doctor told the patient he had the biggest cavity he had ever seen. The dentist then turned to his assistant and said: “Are you ready to go get some lunch?” Of course the patient objected and wanted to know what the dentist was going to do about the cavity. The dentist replied that he didn’t fix dental problems, he just pointed them out.

Another commercial had a termite inspector examining a set of stairs in a house for termites. As he fell through the flight of stairs he said: "I don't fix anything, I just tell you if you have termites or not: "You have termites."

Aren't we all guilty of being ready to hand out advice but much slower in handing out help or working hard to solve the problem?

Matthew 7:16-20 (CEB); "You will know them by their fruit. Do people get bunches of grapes from thorny weeds, or do they get figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, and every rotten tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit. And a rotten tree can’t produce good fruit. Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is chopped down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, you will know them by their fruit."

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Bill Davis lives in Anderson County, SC, where he speaks at churches and encourages evangelism and discipleship efforts across the region. He is the author of “The Revelation of Jesus.”

Monday, August 7, 2017

Missing Generosity

Luke 6:38 - Give, and it will be given to you; a good measure--pressed down, shaken together, and running over--will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you."

The conversation began like many others we had had before. I shared some things God was doing in our ministry. He shared some ways God was opening doors for witnessing in the public square. We rejoiced together at God’s great work. Then we talked about our struggles. They were remarkably similar. Sometimes people did not follow through on their commitments. There never seemed to be enough time, energy or money to get everything done. At the end of the conversation he said “People are just not generous anymore.”

What my friend meant was that people did not volunteer as much as in the past. People did not donate as much as previous generations. Though I tend to be more optimistic about the future than my friend, statistics show that he is right in his conclusions. The December 27, 2016 issue of The Atlantic magazine reported that research done by the YMCA “shows that Americans are volunteering less time and donating less money to causes that were once important to them.” The article goes on to say that the “average American has grown more tight-fisted in recent years, donating a smaller portion of his or her income to charity than he or she did 10 years ago.”

This is something that our society needs to discuss openly, especially those of us who believe in using our resources to advance the gospel in both spiritual and practical ways. We have to rediscover the joy of generous giving. We must once again learn how to give abundantly of our time, talents and treasure.

How many of us can honestly say we have been generous with our time, talents and treasure in the last six months? Could we describe the time we spent volunteering as ample, overflowing or plenteous? Would we consider our level of financial giving to be lavish, abundant, or exuberant? Did we use our talents in bountiful ways to help the organizations we are connected to be over the top successful? Or are we only volunteering enough or donating enough to be socially acceptable? Have we simply eased our conscience with a token when what we need is a return to generosity? These are questions we must answer individually and corporately if our society is to be what it should be.

Lord, help us to be generous with our time, talents and treasure out of the deep appreciation for all You have already done for us. Amen.

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Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Uncovering the Mystery of Faith

Reza Aslan is an author who writes books about religion and is also the host of Believer, a television series that explores the mysteries of faith. He grew up in Tehran during the Iranian Revolution. Though his family was not particularly religious at the time, he said “those childhood images of revolutionary Iran seared themselves into my consciousness and left me with a lifelong interest in trying to understand what and why people believe.” Knowing how terrible the Iranian Revolution was, we can only imagine what those images must have been like. Without question, it permanently impacted Aslan’s view of religion, and I suspect it would have had a similar effect on any of us who experienced such horror.

In a recent article on faith that was published in the American Way magazine, Aslan said “I have tried to uncover the mystery of faith by immersing myself in it.” He has traveled the world and taken part in a wide variety of religious experiences. He has concluded that we are all “bound together by a desire to connect with something more, something beyond this material world.” Though Aslan and I  disagree on many aspects of theology, this is one thing that he and I most surely agree on. Like Aslan, I believe that all people have a God-shaped hole in their spirits. Unlike Aslan, who thinks religion of most any type can fill that hole, I think that believing in Jesus Christ is the only way that hole can be filled.


Jesus said “I am the way, the  truth and the life, no man comes to the Father but through me" (John 14:6). When we come to understand the truth of that statement, then we have really uncovered the mystery of faith.

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Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:

Friday, August 4, 2017

Lost or Trash?

Recently the news was awash with stories that one of our senators used a religious test against a potential government employee, a clear violation of the constitution. The senator took issue with the fact that the potential government employee believes that those who are not Christians are spiritually lost. That whole affair led to many interesting conversations with friends from all stripes of the political and religious landscape. Others have already written extensively on whether the senator should or should not have used a religious test. So I won't delve in that all over again.

I want to focus more on the concept of lostness. What does it mean when a Christian says someone is spiritually lost?  Is telling someone they are spiritually lost intolerant? Is it hate speech? Should Christians be marginalized in the public square because of their views on the exclusivity of salvation through Christ?

To answer to this question one must understand what Christians mean when they say someone is "lost." There is a difference between something that is “lost” and something that is “trash.” Trash has no value and needs to be disposed of in some appropriate way. To refer to someone as trash would indeed be intolerant and unbecoming of Christians. In contrast, something that is "lost" has value to us. In fact, it has so much value that we will go to great lengths to find it. We may clean the house to look for it. We might offer a reward to the general public to find it. We might change our lifestyle and make significant decisions to recover something that is lost but which we consider very valuable. Jesus tells several stories about the importance of finding lost things in Luke 15. It is clear from the context that Jesus thought each of those lost things had great value. They were not trash.

What does this have to do with Christians believing that those without Christ are lost? Everything! Christians believe that every person is created in the image of God and has great value. Though Christians think many people are lost, they do not believe that any of them are trash. Christians believe those lost people have value and we must point them to Jesus so they can be found. As they discover Christ, they find peace, joy, happiness, and community, both in this life and in eternity. That is not intolerant, that is love. The idea that people from all ethnicities, social backgrounds, educational levels and even those from other faith backgrounds, who find new life in Christ will all be in eternity together is a powerful picture of God's tolerance for all who come to Him through grace.

I was once lost, but now I am found. And "found" people like me want to help lost people be found too. So take my efforts to share my faith with you as a demonstration of just how much I value you, because that is what it is.


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Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Why New England College Campuses are So Strategic

I believe New England college campuses are the most strategic mission field in the world. It sounds hyperbolic, but it’s not. It's a fact. There are 20.5 million college students in the United States. Nine hundred seventy thousand of them attend schools in New England.
These schools are some of the best in world: Harvard ... Yale ... Brown ... Dartmouth ... MIT ... Boston College ... Middlebury College ... and the list goes on. New England is full of world-class colleges and universities that leaders around the world entrust their young people to. If we can reach those leaders while they are studying in New England, we can change the world.
It is not just internationals that are sending their students to New England, so are America’s most powerful families. Harvard and Yale have graduated more U. S. Presidents than any other schools in the nation. Just think about how that has allowed those two New England schools to impact America. Equally powerful is the reality that every single current member of the Supreme Court attended law school at Harvard or Yale (even Ruth Ginsburg, who later transferred to Columbia Law School). Let that reality sink in for a moment.
If we want to change America, we must reach our future leaders while they are in college, and since so many of them go to college in New England, that makes the New England college campus the most strategic mission field in the world.
Currently the organization I lead  is working on at least 30 different college campuses. Last year our collegiate ministers impacted 9,000 different students and had hundreds of those students enrolled in weekly discipleship groups. We are thankful for other evangelical groups, like Cru, the Navigators and Intervarsity, who are also working on campuses across New England. However, according to our research, 60% of the campuses in New England are have no identifiable gospel witness. This is an unacceptable reality in light of the strategic nature of New England.
Your church can help us change this reality. Through sponsoring a campus ministry, through sending a short-term mission team, through providing scholarships for students to attend one of our two retreats each year, through prayer, through sending one of your own as a campus minister, you can help us reach students, and ultimately the world, with the Gospel of Christ. Will you stand with us?
You can find out more by contacting Andy Haynes at ahaynes@bcne.net. You can donate at http://www.bcne.net/connect/give/baptist-foundation-of-new-england/donate-to-foundation/collegiate-ministry-fund. You can pray any time, all the time, from anywhere. You can make a difference!
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Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at: