Affirming Human Needs Ministry and Community Involvement by Local Churches

We encourage education, training, and equipping of Christians in human needs ministry as an expression of love, discipleship, and fidelity to our Lord

November 2012

WHEREAS, Humanity's greatest problem at the root of all other problems is rebellion against God and separation from Him because of sin; and

WHEREAS, The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only solution to our problem, as it, through faith in Jesus Christ, reconciles us to God and to one another; and

WHEREAS, The work and ministry of Jesus involved both proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom and demonstrating the love of God; and

WHEREAS, We are commanded by Scripture both to preach the Gospel and to do good deeds so that God's light would shine before men; and

WHEREAS, The indwelling Spirit leads us sacrificially to love our neighbor and all those in need as we love ourselves with both material and spiritual assistance; and

WHEREAS, We are ambassadors for Christ with the ministry of reconciliation to all who are alienated from God and are living under the effects of personal, social, and structural sin; and

WHEREAS, We live in a country and world where sin and its effects greatly harm individuals, families, and communities; and

WHEREAS, Southern Baptists have a long history of providing aid to all people in times of need, including disaster relief, physical assistance, and advocacy for the oppressed, among other things; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, June 19–20, 2012, affirm and encourage the work of our local churches, associations, community ministry centers, state conventions, and missions agencies in their ministries to human needs; and be it further

RESOLVED, That as every local church makes disciples for Christ, it should encourage every disciple to love people; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage every local church to engage the needs of its community, supremely with a strong Gospel witness in words, accompanied by a corresponding witness of deeds; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage generous support of those ministries in Baptist life that are specifically equipped to facilitate the work of human needs ministry and the involvement of local churches in the same; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we encourage education, training, and equipping of Christians in human needs ministry as an expression of love, discipleship, and fidelity to our Lord as God gifts, directs, and enables us to be His hands and feet to a hurting and needy world.

Keywords: human life , poverty , outreach , community projects