New Book: An Infinite Journey

General | Posted by: Editors

By Kevin Schaub

An Infinite JourneyFBC Durham’s senior pastor, Andy Davis, has written a book on the doctrine of sanctification, and we’re excited to announce that it is now available for order. An Infinite Journey: Growing toward Christlikeness (Ambassador International, 2014) is an accessible yet extensive treatment of sanctification, written with pastoral care and clarity. It’s our hope Andy’s book will bless the church, glorify God, and help each reader on their two infinite journeys.

To whet your appetite for Andy’s book, here are a couple of blurbs:

“Rarely have I read such a book on sanctification that is simultaneously serious and fresh, at once reflective and accessible. Andy Davis combines analytical astuteness with pastoral passion. Those who think of themselves as Christians but who have no desire to grow in holiness need this book; Christians who want to be increasingly conformed to Christ will cherish this book.” – D.A. Carson

“Besides the Bible, it would be difficult to find any other single resource with more biblically sound, theologically rich, pastorally helpful, and practical insight about Christian growth than this book. Moreover, it’s not just a book about progress in Christlikeness, for I know Andy Davis and I can affirm that there’s a life of growth in grace behind the book. I recommend it to anyone on the Infinite Journey.” – Don Whitney

Also, you should check out Tim Challies’ review (January 7) of An Infinite Journey here.

To order a copy of An Infinite Journey: Growing toward Christlikeness from Amazon.com, click here. The book is available both in print and digital formats. You can also pick up your copy at FBC Durham if you’re close by, or feel free to contact our church office.

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Image credit: Ambassador International.

Andy Davis Speaking at the 2013 CROSS Conference

General | Posted by: encompass

By Kevin Schaub

CrossCon

In a few days, there will be an enormous missions conference for students in Louisville, Kentucky. We’re excited about CROSSCon for many reasons. Students have a passion and love for missions, and CROSS will be a terrific momentum builder and doctrinal trainer for many would-be missionaries. We’re also excited about the wide breadth of topics that will be addressed, from expositions of key biblical texts to missions history, and the church and missions.

In addition to the plenary speakers, there will be many breakout sessions, and Andy Davis has been tasked to tackle the important topic of mercy ministry. If you would like to download and read over his outline prior to the conference, click on this link. After the conference is over and once the audio of the breakout sessions are made available, we’ll link to that as well.

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Image credit: CROSSCon.

New Post By Andy Davis

General | Posted by: Editors

By Kevin Schaub, Lead Editor

It’s been a little more than a month of mostly crickets here at the Two Journeys blog. Sorry about that. But, I assure you that we’ve got plans to roll out some new content in the weeks ahead. Until then, I wanted to let you know about a recent post that Andy Davis wrote for The Gospel Coalition: How to Mentor Young Disciples When They Differ Theologically.

For those of you who didn’t know, Andy has just returned from his summer-long sabbatical. So, hopefully that means he’ll have some new stuff to post here soon, and I’ll get on some of the other guys about posting here as well. See you again soon.

What’s Ahead

General | Posted by: Editors

By Kevin Schaub, Lead Editor

We’re now up to week three since the launch of Two Journeys (i.e., this blog!). In the weeks ahead, we hope to stick more helpful content up here, so here’s a look at what’s on tap. Andy Davis has written a series of posts on Christ’s view of the Bible. These posts were written to combat some of the attacks that have been made on the truthfulness of Scripture over the years. We’ll start posting them tomorrow.

In addition to that series, Matthew Hodges (our Director of City Outreach) has written a helpful two-part article on how Christians should view work. Twice a year, Matthew leads a six-week workshop called Jobs for Life—a Christ-centered ministry program that helps to prepare individuals in need for work and life.

While you’re at our website, be sure to check out the current sermon series at FBC Durham, Matthew 26–28:

The Preparations for Christ’s Death, Matthew 26:1–16
The Hinge of History: From the Old Covenant to the New, Matthew 26:17–30

See you tomorrow. 

FBC Durham: A Brief Introduction

Church,General | Posted by: Editors

By Nathan Finn, Elder

As a historical theologian by paid vocation, I’m very interested in our church’s history. In this post, I want to provide a brief snapshot of our church’s history, priorities, and some of our present ministries. I hope you will find this helpful.

FBC Durham's Building, Prior to 1927

FBC Durham’s Building, Prior to 1927

FBC Durham was established in 1845 and is the oldest church in Durham. It was originally called the Rose of Sharon Baptist Church before changing its name to Durham Baptist Church in 1877 and then First Baptist Church of Durham in 1878. Over the years, our church has planted about a dozen other churches in and around Durham, most recently South Durham Church. We helped found the Yates Baptist Association, though in 2009 we left that body due to doctrinal concerns. Over the years, several FBC Durham pastors have served as key leaders in the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina and the Southern Baptist Convention. In past years, the church has hosted state convention meetings, statewide Woman’s Missionary Union meetings, and numerous denominational conferences. Dozens of FBC Durham members have served as trustees or board members of state convention or SBC ministries.

Like many Southern Baptist congregations, especially older urban churches, FBC Durham went through its own version of the “conservative resurgence” in recent years. Between the 1960s and the 1990s, the church was served by some pastors who identified with conservatives in the SBC and others who identified with the moderates in the Convention. Because the church’s membership was relatively engaged in denominational affairs, the same division was evident among the church’s deacons, WMU officers, staff members, and other key leaders. In 1990, Allan Moseley became the pastor of FBC Durham and helped to prevent the church from affiliating with Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. Allan left in 1996 to become the dean of students and an Old Testament professor at Southeastern Seminary and is now the senior pastor of Christ Baptist Church in Raleigh.

In 1998, after a prolonged interim pastorate by SEBTS preaching professor Wayne McDill, Andy Davis became the new senior pastor of FBC Durham. Under Andy’s leadership, the church went through a period of significant turmoil between 1999 and 2003. You can read about that story in an article Andy wrote for 9 Marks Ministries. You can also listen to Andy’s interview with Mark Dever about the revitalization of FBC Durham. During this period, the church developed stronger ties with Southeastern Seminary, which is located about a half hour from the church’s building. Several professors and administrators and numerous SEBTS students have joined FBC Durham since the late 1990s. The church also developed ties with Southern Seminary, where Andy Davis earned a PhD in church history. By 2003, the church had become definitively, intentionally conservative in its doctrine. In 2008, the membership approved a change in the church’s polity from a committee-driven congregationalism to a plural-elder-led congregationalism.

In the past decade, the church has renewed its commitment to evangelism and missions. The church has always had a track record of emphasizing global missions. Over the years, dozens of members have served as overseas missionaries, including at least two pastors (Andy Davis served in Japan with the IMB in the mid-1990s). The church has also been committed to short-term overseas mission trips since the 1970s. We currently have five families and two single women serving with the International Mission Board. Another couple serves with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Numerous members have served as Journeymen with IMB in recent years. Members continue to annually participate in numerous short-term trips, most of them sponsored by our church. We have been among the top 100 churches in the SBC in giving to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering. In terms of North American missions, in recent years we have sent domestic church planters to southern Durham and Boston, as well as a NAMB-sponsored church revitalizer to Worcester, MA. We have sent short-term teams to Boston and Gulfport, MS. Many of our members are also involved in disaster relief ministries through North Carolina Baptist Men.

In and around Durham, we seek to share the gospel and meet physical needs through a variety of ministries. Our church works with Jobs for Life to provide basic vocational skills while sharing the good news with those who are without work. Several of our members partner with Child Evangelism Fellowship to work with inner-city children. We operate a Caring Center, which is a clothes closet serving those who live in the inner city. Once a year, we host a large cookout at a low-income apartment complex a couple of blocks from our church building. Twice a year, we host a Health Fair on our church’s campus, which provides free medical and dental services to folks in our community. Some of the church’s men have led Bible studies at a local prison for nearly four decades (they’ve never missed a week). We have a thriving ministry to internationals, most of whom are graduate students at Duke University and their families. Around one hundred internationals are in our church building and/or member’s homes every week for Bible study, corporate worship, ESL classes, or other ministries.

Our church has influence beyond our immediate area, in large part because of Andy Davis. Andy serves as a council member of The Gospel Coalition. He has a widely regarded expositional preaching ministry that has taken him all over America and to numerous other countries. He serves as a visiting professor of historical theology at SEBTS, where he teaches classes on the Reformation, the Puritans, and Jonathan Edwards. He regularly teaches missionaries overseas and helps walk churches through the process of reform and revitalization.

Andy is the author of a well-known and widely used booklet on Scripture memorization. He has also contributed to numerous books, including Why I Am A Baptist (B&H Academic, 2001), Dear Timothy: Letters on Pastoral Ministry (Founders, 2004), Those Who Must Give an Account: A Study of Church Membership and Church Discipline (B&H Academic, 2012), Whomever He Wills: A Surprising Display of Sovereign Mercy (Founders, 2012), and The Gospel As Center: Renewing Our Faith and Reforming Our Ministry Practices (Crossway, 2012). He has also contributed articles to the 9 Marks Journal, The Gospel Coalition website, Between the Times, and The Journal on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

We’ve also had a number of our members go on to serve in various full-time ministries. In addition to the aforementioned missionaries and church planters, numerous former members, most of them college or seminary students, have gone on to serve in various pastoral ministry positions. Several men serve as pastors or other ministry staff leaders in churches in North Carolina, Texas, Alabama, Massachusetts, and Florida. Current and former members serve as faculty members at Southeastern Seminary and Southwestern Seminary. Several former members serve with collegiate ministries such as CRU, Baptist Collegiate Ministries, and InterVarsity. Others have served as state convention servants, including a state paper editor.

God has blessed FBC Durham in numerous ways. We’re grateful for almost 170 years of gospel ministry. We pray for even greater faithfulness and fruitfulness in the years to come. If you live near Durham and you are looking for a good church home, I’d urge you to visit FBC Durham. You can find directions to our building and service times here.

Editor’s Note: This article was originally posted on Nathan Finn’s personal blog. Image credit: http://www.endangereddurham.org/Photos/firstbaptist1_postcard.jpg

Coming Soon

General | Posted by: Editors

By Kevin Schaub, Lead Editor

In recent months our FBC Durham website has been overhauled and relaunched. Not only does it look snazzy, with all its buttons and new space for information, but it also has a built-in section for a blog. Since the new site was launched, the blog section has been filled with church-life announcements and other filler that really was meant for other sections of our new website, mainly because we needed some time to think over how to use our blog: like, what would we use it for, and what would we say?

So we have come up with a plan. Over the next several months, we hope to address a variety of important topics related to the local church and the Christian life, and so on. We have a handful of dedicated writers, editors, and other occasional contributors in mind who will help provide the content. We especially hope that what we write will be helpful to pastors, local churches, and lay brothers and sisters in Christ just about anywhere.

As we post content, please let us know what you think of it. We would love to hear from you!

Here are some links that may interest you while you’re here:

FBC Durham’s Core Values
The Internal & External Journeys
FBC Durham’s Sermon Audio
About Our Elders & Staff

See you soon.