Evangelism-themed Bibles en route to churches
ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) -- Every Southern Baptist and Canadian National Baptist church in North America will receive a case of New Testaments from the North American Mission Board by early April.
The "Find It Here" New Testaments are part of NAMB's God's Plan for Sharing: GPS initiative to encourage "Every Believer Sharing, Every Person Hearing" by 2020.
"If your church hasn't been out in your community sharing Christ in a while, we think these Bibles are a great tool for outreach," NAMB President Kevin Ezell said. "And if you are already active in reaching your community, this is one more tool we think everyone will want to use."
Churches began receiving the shipments in mid-February. Because of the large number being shipped, it will take six weeks for churches to receive their New Testaments. Each case contains 48 New Testaments and a card that tells pastors why the New Testaments were sent to them and how they can order more. Churches are asked to use the New Testaments as part of their evangelistic efforts.
Spanish-speaking churches will receive a Spanish-language translation.
Each New Testament has specific verses marked to guide evangelistic conversations. On the back of each New Testament, those looking for spiritual help are given the findithere.com Web address and a phone number where they can find spiritual counseling. The English New Testaments being shipped to churches use the Holman Christian Standard version of the text.
"As we encourage every believer to share, we see this as a tool they can use to talk to people about Christ," said Al Gilbert, NAMB's vice president for evangelism. "Then the person hearing about Christ will have the opportunity to find out more on findithere.com."
Gilbert said the Find It Here campaign undergirds the God's Plan for Sharing: GPS evangelistic initiative. The evangelistic Find It Here website, New Testaments and related materials support what churches are doing to share Christ with every person in North America.
At least one state convention has already made plans for how to use additional New Testaments. The Missouri Baptist Convention ordered 50,000 Find It Here New Testaments to encourage Missouri Baptists to begin a movement that will lead to distributing 1 million New Testaments to Missourians in 2014.
"I chose to use the Find It Here New Testaments because they are marked, use the HCSB translation and are attractive," said Mark Snowden, the evangelism/discipleship strategist at the Missouri Baptist Convention. "The Bible distribution strategy is at the heart of our state GPS 2014-15 emphasis on ministry evangelism."
The Find It Here New Testaments were produced through a partnership between NAMB and LifeWay Christian Resources. LifeWay assisted in the development of the New Testaments and printed them at a discounted rate.
"The Bible is LifeWay's number one core value and sharing it with the world is at the heart of our mission," said Thom Rainer, president of LifeWay. "We are honored to partner with NAMB in developing the Find It Here New Testaments. NAMB's commitment to serve and equip the local church to reach the lost is truly stellar, and we are excited to help distribute God's Word."
Churches can purchase additional cases of New Testaments at gps2020.net. The site includes other resources and suggestions for how churches can reach their communities for Christ. The New Testaments will be available in LifeWay stores beginning in early April.
Tobin Perry writes for the North American Mission Board. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress), Facebook (Facebook.com/BaptistPress ) and in your email ( baptistpress.com/SubscribeBP.asp).