By Ronnie Floyd
The annual Pastors’ Conference of the Southern Baptist Convention has a long-living legacy. During the days of the Conservative Resurgence, it helped set the agenda and atmosphere of the subsequent annual meeting of Southern Baptists.
3 Distinctives of the Pastors’ Conference
While the agenda may change annually, these distinctive principles set the tone.
1. Preaching Rules the Conference
The Pastors’ Conference highlights some of America’s finest biblical preachers and calls fellow pastors and laypersons to action.
2. Worship Sets the Atmosphere
The Pastor’s Conference is distinctive due to powerful, uplifting worship. It can be a tremendous outlet for pastors and their wives.
3. Encouragement is the Heart
At its best, the Pastors’ Conference gives heart-warming, life-changing encouragement to Pastors. In fact, it has been used of God to save the ministry of many pastors.
The 2016 Pastors’ Conference Will Continue This Legacy
Pastor John Meador of the First Baptist Church of Euless, Texas, is the current President of the 2016 Pastors’ Conference. He has gathered a powerful group of preachers, who will not just preach the Word, but encourage you to follow Jesus fully and do ministry passionately.
The theme, Live This, is based upon 2 Timothy 4:5-6. The goal is to challenge and equip pastors to mobilize and train their people to take the Gospel into their community more effectively. John believes, as I do, God wants to use the local church pastor to lead the way in reaching his community for Jesus.
Please go to sbcpc.net to learn more about this year’s Pastors’ Conference, including speakers and session details. It begins Sunday evening, June 12, and concludes Monday evening, June 13.
A Final Testimony
Some of the most dynamic moments in my life and ministry in the Southern Baptist Convention occurred during the Pastors’ Conference. I remember the 1979 Pastors’ Conference in Houston, Texas, when I heard James Robison, W.A. Criswell, and Adrian Rogers. It was my first convention and I had never been in such an environment.
President Stan Coffey, a friend who is now in heaven, asked me to preach at a Pastors’ Conference for the first time at the 1988 Pastors’ Conference in San Antonio, Texas. That evening, we were all sitting on the edge of our chairs and I will never forget W.A Criswell’s message, The Curse of Liberalism.
He introduced his message with these words: “We have a full program tonight, so we begin. May I speak on The Curse of Liberalism? Because of the opprobrious epithet “liberal,” today they call themselves “moderates.” A skunk by any other name still stinks!” The crowd exploded! The next day, Jerry Vines was elected President of the Southern Baptist Convention.
I have missed only two Pastors’ Conferences since 1979, have been humbled to speak many times at this conference, and was privileged to serve as its president in 1997 in Dallas, Texas. It has a special place in my life and ministry.
Come to our 2016 SBC Pastors’ Conference. You will be glad you did! John Meador, thank you for leading us as president. We are praying for you and the conference.
Dr. Ronnie Floyd is currently serving as the President of the Southern Baptist Convention, and is senior pastor of the multi-campus Cross Church in northwest Arkansas. This column first appeared at Ronnie Floyd’s website, www.ronniefloyd.com.