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Ogeechee River Baptists meet
Annual gathering attracts 37 Bulloch County churches
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Ogeechee River Baptist Association "Associational Missionary" (their Director) Dr. Edgar Johnson; Georgia Baptist Convention President Bucky Kennedy; Pastor Joe Eason of Trinity Baptist Church. - photo by ROGER ALLEN/special
      At the recent 111th annual meeting of the Ogeechee River Baptist Association, some one hundred pastors and deacons of 37 Bulloch County Baptist churches came together in Nevils to consider the challenges that lie ahead during the next year for the churches in Bulloch County and the nation.
      Georgia Baptist Convention President Bucky Kennedy delivered the evening’s sermon entitled “Righteous Troublers.” Kennedy talked about the message found in 1 Kings 18, which deals with the relationship between King Ahab, Obediah, the Keeper of Ahab’s Castle, and Elijah, whom God had hidden from Ahab for three years.
      Obediah chose to hide 100 ‘Prophets’ from Jezebel, who had killed all the Prophets that could be found. When Elijah pressured Obadiah to confront King Ahab once again, Obadiah’s response was that he had already done his part.
      Obediah, Kennedy said, was more concerned for his safety and about his future than he was about doing God’s work. Kennedy stated that this is a refrain heard all the time in modern churches. Kennedy stated, “The reward for our faithfulness is not a release from more opportunities to do God’s work but rather more opportunities to show our faithfulness”.
      Laughing, he challenged the men in the audience when asked by their wives to take out the trash to say “I’ve done it for ten years. Let somebody else do it” and see what happened. He continued, “If we worry about the future when we are doing God’s work, we are displaying our lack of faith”.
      Elijah finally told Obediah that he was going to see Ahab again regardless of whether or not Obediah helped him, because “God didn’t need Obediah to succeed.” Kennedy said it is imperative that we as Christians understand “That God doesn’t us to succeed, but rather it is we who need him to succeed.”
      Kennedy then asked the members of the audience if they, “like Obadiah, were afraid to forcibly confront the evils of this world because of what their resistance might cost them as far as their status in the community or their comfort at home?”
      Kennedy challenged all Baptists to stop being “lukewarm believers,” who measure their faith by what they are opposed to, and become “hot-hearted believers,” who measure their faith instead by what they are pursuing.
      Kennedy warned that many Christians become so inured to the evils of the world that they almost become used to them. He listed alcoholism, teenage pregnancies, and divorce as examples of social ills that have become so prevalent in many segments of our society that it seems useless to try to combat them.
      At Mount Carmel, Elijah allowed the 450 prophets of Baal to beseech their god to show his power for a full day (to no effect). He knew Baal worship was truly evil: young girls were used as sex-slaves  for fertility rites, and the first born of every family was put to death to please Molech (Baal’s counterpart).
      Elijah then called upon God, who sent down fire that consumed everything at the altar. Elijah then ordered that all of Baal’s priests be seized and put to death, for he knew that religious tolerance must have its limits, and that the people needed to make a choice.
      In closing, Kennedy challenged everyone in attendance to be “a majority of one.” They must stand up for what they know is right, and never waiver in their commitment to do God’s work. Like Elijah, Kennedy said, true Christians, he said, are never alone, but are always accompanied by the limitless power of God.

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