The First Founders Cruise is underway and the Holland of America ship, Veendam, is sailing through the Gulf of Mexico as I write. Together with the pre-cruise conference held in Tampa, the sessions have combined to provide wonderful instruction on the Gospel of God's grace and its implications for all of life. The Tampa Conference addressed the theme, "What is the Gospel?" and Fred Malone spoke specifically on that question. His message and the one delivered by Roy Hargrave ("What is Evangelism?") should be required listening for all pastors and serious Christians. Fred simply outlined the Gospel as a message about God, about man, about Christ and the call for response. Without these elements, whatever is preached or taught, it is not the Gospel. Roy showed how the passionate proclamation and declaration of that Gospel is what constitutes evangelism. God saves sinners by grace but He uses means to do so. By reasoning with people to believe the Gospel we are joining the Spirit, as the Bride, in saying to sinners, "Come!"
Steve Kreloff gave a wonderful case for expository preaching in answering the question, "What is Preaching?" David Wooten ably preached from Ephesians 2 on "What is Salvation?" Steve Camp warned against the many ecclesiastical models that are prevalent today in answering the question, "What is a Church?" And I, perhaps too ambitiously, tacked, "What is Christianity?"
On the cruise we are looking at the "Practical Implications of Calvinism." Participants from as far away as Nova Scotia and Ireland have joined us for this nautical conference. The late night "Theological Dialogues on the High Seas" have already proven to be highlights of our times together.
CD's of all these messages will be available next month from Founders Ministries.