Inner-city Church Planters

What are the specific trials and joys of inner-city church planting? When we talk about the “inner-city” what do we exactly mean given the gentrification of many cities. How might the church at large partner with brothers and sisters who are doing the hard work of inner-city church planting? Join brothers who are planting in various cities to learn from their testimonies and glean encouragement from the Lord’s work in and through them.


Speakers

Brian Davis

Brian Davis moved to Philadelphia from Detroit in 2006 and has since considered it home. Since conversion, he has desired to help establish a healthy church in an inner-city context which eventually led to his being a part of Risen Christ Fellowship. He has completed a church planting internship at Imago Dei Church in Raleigh, NC which he began at the conclusion of completing the pastoral internship at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in 2013. Brian is joyfully married to Sonia, and the Lord has given them two delightful sons: Spurgeon & Sibbes, and a lovely girl, Noelle.

John Onwuchekwa

John Onwuchekwa, a native of Houston, Texas, was born into a Nigerian home where the gospel was cherished deeply and modeled excellently. After graduating from college, he studied at Dallas Theological Seminary. He’s served at churches in both Texas and Georgia and in 2015 moved into the Historic West End to help plant Cornerstone Church with his best friends. He and his wife, Shawndra, have been married since 2007. They’re eager to see the hope of the gospel restore a sense of family, dignity, and hope to their neighborhood through their local church of ordinary people.

Kempton Turner

Kempton Turner was raised in East St. Louis, Illinois, but has spent most of his life in Houston, Texas. Most recently, he served on the pastoral staff at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, for 7 years before becoming the Church Planting Pastoral Resident under the oversight of the elders. Kempton’s prayer and hope is that the Lord would establish a joyful, loving, Christ-magnifying local church in his hometown. Kempton and his childhood sweetheart Caryn have been happily married since 1999 and the Lord has blessed them with four children: Christian, Carysse, Kalia, and Caleb.

Matt Schmucker

Thabiti Anyabwile

Thabiti Anyabwile is the pastor of Anacostia River Church in Washington, D.C. Prior to that, Thabiti served as the pastor of First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman for seven years. He is a native of Lexington, North Carolina. Thabiti holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in psychology from North Carolina State University. He is the author of Captivated: Beholding the Mystery of Jesus’ Death and Resurrection, The Gospel for Muslims: An Encouragement to Share Christ with Confidence, The Decline of African-American Theology, The Life of God in the soul of the Church, Finding Faithful Elders & Deacons, and What is a Healthy Church Member?. He is the happy husband of Kristie and the adoring father of three children. A former high school basketball coach and bookstore owner, he enjoys preaching, reading, sports, and watching sci-fi films.

Sovereign Grace Churches

Speakers: Ian McConnell, Mark Prater Year: 2016 Session: Gatherings

What is the mission and purpose of sovereign grace churches? Join C.J. Mahaney, Mark Prater, and Ian McConnell to learn more about sovereign grace churches and the work the Lord is doing in and through them.


Speakers

Ian McConnell

Ian serves as Lead Pastor at Covenant Community Church (Philadelphia, PA). One of Ian’s main shepherding responsibilities at Covenant is the proclamation of the Word. He also serves as Director of Church Planting & Mission for Sovereign Grace Churches promoting and coordinating church planting domestically by working with our Regional Leaders and Regional Church Planting Committees as they assess, equip, and deploy church planters.

Mark Prater

Mark is Executive Director of Sovereign Grace Churches ensuring the successful operation of the Leadership Team through leadership, strategic planning, support, evaluation, and communication and leading using our mission to plant and build churches with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Mark has served as an elder at Covenant Fellowship Church since 2002. In 1996, he helped plant a church where he served as senior pastor until 2002.

Why Theological Education?

There is an obvious answer to the question of “why theological education?” Seminaries can provide things most local churches cannot provide on their own to prepare pastors for seminary. There is no premium on ignorance; pastors need the tools to teach God’s Word. In this breakout session, three different seminary presidents discuss the joys of leading seminaries and the dire need for men grounded in the inerrant word of God.


Speakers

Albert Mohler

R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as the ninth president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Mohler is a theologian and an ordained minister, having served as pastor and staff minister of several Southern Baptist churches. He came to the presidency of Southern Seminary from service as editor of The Christian Index, the oldest of the state papers serving the Southern Baptist Convention. Dr. Mohler is a member of Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the author of The Apostles’ Creed: Discovering Authentic Christianity in an Age of Counterfeits, The Prayer that Turns the World Upside Down, We Cannot Be Silent, The Conviction to Lead, He is Not Silent, Culture Shift: Engaging Current Issues with Timeless Truth, and Atheism Remix. He is married to Mary, and they have two children, and are the proud grandparents of Benjamin and Henry.

John MacArthur

John MacArthur is the president of The Master’s College and Seminary and featured teacher with Grace to You. In 1969, after graduating from Talbot Theological Seminary, John took the pastorate at Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California. The emphasis of his pulpit ministry is the careful study and verse-by-verse exposition of the Bible, with special attention devoted to the historical and grammatical background behind each passage. Since completing his first best-selling book, The Gospel According to Jesus, in 1988, John has written hundreds of other books and study guides, including Our Sufficiency in Christ and The MacArthur New Testament Commentary series. John and his wife, Patricia, live in Southern California and have four married children. They also enjoy the enthusiastic company of their fifteen grandchildren.

Ligon Duncan

Ligon Duncan is Chancellor/CEO of Reformed Theological Seminary, and John E. Richards Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology. Born in Greenville, South Carolina, and reared in a Christian home, he did his studies at Furman University, Greenville, SC (BA); Covenant Theological Seminary, St. Louis (MDiv & MA); and the University of Edinburgh, Scotland (PhD). Ligon and his wife, Anne, have two children. Ligon has edited, written, and contributed to numerous books, most recently including: The Gospel As Center, Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, Preaching the Cross, Fear Not: Death and the Afterlife from a Christian Perspective, In My Place Condemned He Stood, and Does Grace Grow Best in Winter?.

What Then Should We Sing?

What kinds of songs and music best fulfill Colossians 3:16? In this breakout session, musicians, who both write music and lead music in their church, gather to discuss the purpose of song in the individual’s Christian life and in the life of the church. How are songs “little theology lessons”? Why did God give us song in the first place?


Speakers

Bob Kauflin

Bob Kauflin is director of Sovereign Grace Music. He equips pastors and musicians in the theology and practice of congregational worship and serves as a pastor at Sovereign Grace Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He writes at worshipmatters.com and is author of True Worshipers: Seeking What Matters to God. Bob and his wife, Julie, have six children and a growing number of grandchildren.

Keith Getty

Keith Getty occupies a unique space in the world of music today as a preeminent modern hymn writer. Keith and his wife Kristyn have written hymns that are used increasingly both in contemporary and traditional circles, being included in most modern hymnbooks (with a number of these now listing “Getty” as the most-featured composers), while in the more contemporary church, more than 60 of their songs are featured on top 2,000 CCLI charts between the UK and USA. Keith and Kristyn live between Northern Ireland and Nashville with their daughters, Eliza Joy, Charlotte, and Grace.

Matt Boswell

Matt Boswell is a pastor at Providence Church in Frisco, Texas, and hosts the Doxology & Theology Conference, a biennial conference focused on corporate worship.

Matt Merker

Matt Merker serves as an elder and on the pastoral staff at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC. He studied religion and music at Vanderbilt University and received a Master of Divinity from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Matt and his wife Erica live on Capitol Hill with their daughter and son. You can find Matt's congregational hymns at www.mattmerkermusic.com.

Church Planting: Out of Joy the Church Multiplies

Speakers: Matt Chandler Year: 2016 Session: Breakout Session

Join Matt Chandler as he reviews the losses his church has taken for the sake of church planting and how those losses are actually joyous gains. Why should the end of evangelism or missions be the establishing of a healthy bastion of gospel light or, in other words, a church? In this breakout session, Matt Chandler discusses the work the Lord is doing through brothers his church has raised up and the beauty of seeing the gospel go forth.


Speaker

Matt Chandler serves as lead pastor for teaching at The Village Church in Dallas, Texas. He assumed this role in August 2002 after several years of serving on a local church staff and as an itinerant preacher. Matt is involved in church planting around Dallas and across the world through The Village Church and other partnerships such as Acts 29, at which he serves as president. He is the author of The Mingling of Souls, The Explicit Gospel, and Creature of the Word. He and his wife, Lauren, live with their three children in Highland Village, Texas.

Gay Marriage: Now What? (Panel III)

Speakers: Albert Mohler, Mark Dever Year: 2012 Session: Panel Session

The civil definition of marriage has remained the same for centuries and across cultures. Only recently has the basic meaning of marriage been redefined in society. The moral revolution is presenting a permanent challenge to the enduring biblical definition. Every human is broken sexually, yet how are Christians to maintain biblical love and conviction with this recent moral revolution?


Speakers

Albert Mohler

R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as the ninth president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Mohler is a theologian and an ordained minister, having served as pastor and staff minister of several Southern Baptist churches. He came to the presidency of Southern Seminary from service as editor of The Christian Index, the oldest of the state papers serving the Southern Baptist Convention. Dr. Mohler is a member of Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the author of The Apostles’ Creed: Discovering Authentic Christianity in an Age of Counterfeits, The Prayer that Turns the World Upside Down, We Cannot Be Silent, The Conviction to Lead, He is Not Silent, Culture Shift: Engaging Current Issues with Timeless Truth, and Atheism Remix. He is married to Mary, and they have two children, and are the proud grandparents of Benjamin and Henry.

Mark Dever

Mark Dever serves as the senior pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC. A Duke graduate, Mark holds a M.Div. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, a Th.M. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Ecclesiastical History from Cambridge University. He is the president of 9Marks and has taught at a number of seminaries. Mark has authored several books and articles, most recently, Compelling Community, Baptist Foundations, The Gospel and Personal Evangelism, What is a Healthy Church?, and Nine Marks of a Healthy Church. He and his wife Connie live and minister on Capitol Hill. They have two adult children.

When A Pastor Loses Heart (Session I)

Speakers: C.J. Mahaney Year: 2012 Session: Main Session

A pastor is not exempt from temptation. It seems they are especially tempted to lose heart in the midst of Christian ministry. Although Paul endured great hardships and persecutions, he calls all pastors to not lose heart. Paul teaches pastors that the ability to endure must involve an informed resolve to recall the call of ministry, the context of ministry and maintaining an eternal perspective.


Speaker

C.J. Mahaney serves as the Senior Pastor for Sovereign Grace Church of Louisville and is the author of several books, including Living the Cross Centered Life, Humility: True Greatness, Don’t Waste Your Sports, and Sex, Romance and the Glory of God. C.J. and his wife, Carolyn, have three married daughters, one son, and twelve grandchildren. They reside in Louisville, Kentucky but C.J. cheers for his hometown teams the Washington Redskins, Nationals, Wizards, and University of Maryland basketball.

False Conversions: The Suicide of the Church (Session III)

Speakers: Mark Dever Year: 2012 Session: Main Session

Throughout redemptive history, God has brought about a plan to bring glory to himself through a particular people. Today, this occurs through the church. However, is it a problem if not all members of your local church are born again believers? Many churches today have false converts due to a lack of biblical knowledge regarding teachers, doctrine and godly living.


Speaker

Mark Dever serves as the senior pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC. A Duke graduate, Mark holds a M.Div. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, a Th.M. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Ecclesiastical History from Cambridge University. He is the president of 9Marks and has taught at a number of seminaries. Mark has authored several books and articles, most recently, Compelling Community, Baptist Foundations, The Gospel and Personal Evangelism, What is a Healthy Church?, and Nine Marks of a Healthy Church. He and his wife Connie live and minister on Capitol Hill. They have two adult children.

The Fulfillment of the Gospel (Session VIII)

Speakers: Matt Chandler Year: 2012 Session: Main Session

As a pastor labors to lead and teach, it is essential for him to have a longing hope for the future and final fulfillment of the gospel. A faithful pastor is to take one day at a time as he looks forward to the final day of rest.


Speaker

Matt Chandler serves as lead pastor for teaching at The Village Church in Dallas, Texas. He assumed this role in August 2002 after several years of serving on a local church staff and as an itinerant preacher. Matt is involved in church planting around Dallas and across the world through The Village Church and other partnerships such as Acts 29, at which he serves as president. He is the author of The Mingling of Souls, The Explicit Gospel, and Creature of the Word. He and his wife, Lauren, live with their three children in Highland Village, Texas.

Why Every Pastor Should Be a Biblical Theologian

Speakers: Michael Lawrence Year: 2012 Session: Breakout Session

What should a local pastor be about? The model of a pastor has changed over time to that of a professional, but biblically he is a theologian. The pastor must be a biblical theologian who proclaims and brings the Word of God to bear through shaping lives, communities and congregations by conforming them to Jesus Christ.


Speaker

Michael Lawrence is a pastor at Hinson Baptist Church in Portland, OR and holds an M.Div. degree from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and a PhD from Cambridge University. Michael is married to his wife, Adrienne, and they have five children.

The Pastor and the Spirit: Priorities from 1 Corinthians 12-14

Speakers: Jeff Purswell Year: 2012 Session: Breakout Session

Although there are differing views on I Corinthians 12-14, one can understand Paul’s reference to the Spirit. The goal of the Spirit of the Lord is edification, not individual gifts. Love is the infallible measure of the Spirit’s presence at work. Therefore, a life that displays selfless service in concrete actions for the good of others is the greatest mark of the Spirit.


Speaker

Jeff serves as a pastor at Sovereign Grace Church of Louisville. As Director of Theology and Training for Sovereign Grace Churches, Jeff is dean of the Pastors College, leads pastoral and theological training, and is responsible for seeing that ordination standards and testing are in place to serve Regional Ordination Committees.

Afflicting the Comfortable: How to Help the Unconverted “Christians” in Our Churches

Speakers: Mike McKinley Year: 2012 Session: Breakout Session

It is possible for a person to be convinced he is a Christian and not be converted. However, there are things that pastors and churches can do to have people know their spiritual state. They include, but are not limited to: knowing what a Christian is, being clear on the gospel, acknowledging the presence of nominal Christians in our churches, being clear about sin and being clear about the Church.


Speaker

Mike McKinley was raised in suburban Philadelphia. He received a B.A. in Religion and Classics from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and an M.Div from Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. In 2004, Mike was brought onto the pastoral staff at Capitol Hill Baptist Church as a church planter. In 2005, he brought a small group of people from CHBC to Guilford Baptist Church in order to help revitalize the church’s ministry. He served as Guilford’s pastor until 2013, when Guilford merged with Sterling Park Baptist Church, where he now serves as Senior Pastor. Mike has been married to Karen since 1997, and they have five beautiful children: Kendall, Knox, Phineas, Ebenezer, and Harper. In his free time, Mike loves to spend time with his family, reading all kinds of books, and daydreaming about the New York Yankees and the Philadelphia Eagles.

Mars and Venus at the Cross: Toward a Crucified Vision of Manhood and Womanhood

Speakers: Russell Moore Year: 2012 Session: Breakout Session

God’s design of men and women need to viewed by the church as a spiritual warfare issue. The biblical design of manhood and womanhood is constantly being challenged by the culture surrounding us. The perfect example of Jesus and the instruction of the New Testament teach us that as Christian’s we ought to have a crucified vision of our roles as men and women.


Speaker

Russell Moore serves as the eighth president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, the moral and public policy agency of the nation’s largest Protestant denomination. A widely-sought cultural commentator, Dr. Moore has been recognized by a number of influential organizations. The Wall Street Journal has called him “vigorous, cheerful, and fiercely articulate” while The Gospel Coalition has referred to him as “one of the most astute ethicists in contemporary evangelicalism.” An ethicist and theologian by background, Dr. Moore is also an ordained Southern Baptist minister and the author of several books including Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel. A native Mississippian, he and his wife Maria are the parents of five sons.

The Church is the Gospel Made Visible (Session I)

Speakers: Mark Dever Year: 2010 Session: Main Session

What kind of gospel is your local church making visible? God ought to be displayed in the local church through the church’s focus on holiness, God’s love and His authority. The congregation ought to display the gospel through remembering that each individual is an image bearer, each human being is fallen, and each person has the ability to confess and forgive sin. The biggest picture for the world to see proof of the gospel is the church.


Speaker

Mark Dever serves as the senior pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC. A Duke graduate, Mark holds a M.Div. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, a Th.M. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in Ecclesiastical History from Cambridge University. He is the president of 9Marks and has taught at a number of seminaries. Mark has authored several books and articles, most recently, Compelling Community, Baptist Foundations, The Gospel and Personal Evangelism, What is a Healthy Church?, and Nine Marks of a Healthy Church. He and his wife Connie live and minister on Capitol Hill. They have two adult children.

Fine-Sounding Arguments: How Wrongly ‘Engaging the Culture’ Adjusts the Gospel (Session IV)

Speakers: Thabiti Anyabwile Year: 2010 Session: Main Session

What does it look like to engage and embrace culture? What are the terms and objectives of engagement? If one is set out to engage the culture, without careful biblical thought, one will likely see the gospel adjusted. As one is consumed in embodying the gospel itself, the Christian will engage culture in a Christ centered way.


Speaker

Thabiti Anyabwile is the pastor of Anacostia River Church in Washington, D.C. Prior to that, Thabiti served as the pastor of First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman for seven years. He is a native of Lexington, North Carolina. Thabiti holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in psychology from North Carolina State University. He is the author of Captivated: Beholding the Mystery of Jesus’ Death and Resurrection, The Gospel for Muslims: An Encouragement to Share Christ with Confidence, The Decline of African-American Theology, The Life of God in the soul of the Church, Finding Faithful Elders & Deacons, and What is a Healthy Church Member?. He is the happy husband of Kristie and the adoring father of three children. A former high school basketball coach and bookstore owner, he enjoys preaching, reading, sports, and watching sci-fi films.

Preparing Your Church for Suffering (Session VIII)

Speakers: Matt Chandler Year: 2010 Session: Main Session

Matt Chandler shares about how God has sustained him through suffering. He shares the importance of a pastor preparing his congregation for suffering. Furthermore, CJ Mahaney echoes Chandler. He says that a pastor needs to prepare their congregation with the gospel before suffering, so that when one does suffer they trust and are assured in Christ.


Speaker

Matt Chandler serves as lead pastor for teaching at The Village Church in Dallas, Texas. He assumed this role in August 2002 after several years of serving on a local church staff and as an itinerant preacher. Matt is involved in church planting around Dallas and across the world through The Village Church and other partnerships such as Acts 29, at which he serves as president. He is the author of The Mingling of Souls, The Explicit Gospel, and Creature of the Word. He and his wife, Lauren, live with their three children in Highland Village, Texas.

Ordinary Pastors (Session IX)

Speakers: C.J. Mahaney Year: 2010 Session: Main Session

Preaching from 2 Timothy 4:1-5, CJ Mahaney exhorts ordinary pastors to be faithful proclaim the gospel, faithful to one’s ministry and faithful to the Savior. Pastors need to know their own congregation and pray for pastoral wisdom and discernment in all godly character and patience


Speaker

C.J. Mahaney serves as the Senior Pastor for Sovereign Grace Church of Louisville and is the author of several books, including Living the Cross Centered Life, Humility: True Greatness, Don’t Waste Your Sports, and Sex, Romance and the Glory of God. C.J. and his wife, Carolyn, have three married daughters, one son, and twelve grandchildren. They reside in Louisville, Kentucky but C.J. cheers for his hometown teams the Washington Redskins, Nationals, Wizards, and University of Maryland basketball.

Proclaiming the Comfort of the Gospel

Speakers: Tony Carter Year: 2010 Session: Breakout Session

“Comfort, comfort my people,” says the Lord. Does that theme ring through loud and clear in your gospel preaching? As a pastor, one needs to have the ability to look at sins in the society and the misery of those sins causing problems among the people of God. Our true source of peace and comfort comes through the gospel blood bought justification through Jesus Christ. Comfort assures of the Father’s love.


Speaker

Tony Carter serves as the Lead Pastor of East Point Church. Tony is married to his beloved, Adriane Carter, and their marriage has bore the fruit of five wonderful children.