Southern Baptist Convention

WHEREAS, The Great Commission is carried out when unbelievers hear the Gospel, repent of their sins and believe in the Gospel, are baptized as witnesses to the Gospel, and are taught to obey all the commands of Christ (Matthew 28:16–20); and

WHEREAS, Jesus’s model for disciple-making extends beyond focusing exclusively on the inner, deeper life and necessarily entails being fishers of men (Matthew 4:19; Luke 5:10, 19:20; 1 Corinthians 9:19–23); and

WHEREAS, The discipline of evangelism is “soul-winning,” as the New Testament employs the words “winning” and “persuading” in regards to imploring unbelievers to believe in Jesus Christ for the salvation of their souls (1 Corinthians 9:19–22; 2 Corinthians 5:11, 20); and

WHEREAS, The soul of every person will spend eternity in hell unless that person believes the life-changing message of the Gospel (Matthew 7:21–23; Luke 16:19–31; Romans 10:14–15; Revelation 20:11–15); and

WHEREAS, The Scriptures teach that a clear and complete invitation to receive Jesus Christ must be offered genuinely to all people (Matthew 19:16–30; Mark 10:17–22; Acts 1:8; 2:26–39; Revelation 22:17); and

WHEREAS, As spiritual leaders of their churches and to be innocent of the blood of all men, pastors bear dual responsibilities not only for proclaiming the Gospel publicly but also for sharing the Gospel personally with lost people (Ezekiel 3:16–21; 33:1–20; Acts 18:5–8; 20:17–38; Romans 10:15); and

WHEREAS, Though Southern Baptists have historically challenged themselves in personal evangelism, baptisms, and discipleship, nevertheless, there has been an alarming downturn among Southern Baptist churches in baptisms since 1998, even as the population of the United States has grown; and

WHEREAS, Commendable Southern Baptist efforts in church planting, church revitalization, and new works must be matched by a commitment to and engagement in intentional evangelism in order for true, Great Commission advance to occur; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, June 14–15, 2016, understand “evangelism” as the intentional, consistent, and verbal declaration of the Gospel to unbelievers in the power of the Holy Spirit; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we articulate from the Scriptures the death, burial, and resurrection of the God-man, Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of sins as the heart of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:3–4); and be it further

RESOLVED, That we acknowledge salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, and in Christ alone, wrought by the Holy Spirit as people repent of their sins, believe in Jesus Christ, and confess Him as their Savior and Lord (John 14:6; 16:8–11; Acts 2:37–38; 4:12; Romans 10:9-10; Ephesians 1:13; 2:8; Titus 3:4–7); and be it further

RESOLVED, That we affirm a clear and complete Gospel presentation includes the genuine invitation for any unbeliever to repent of sin, to believe in Jesus Christ as the only way to receive God’s salvation and forgiveness, and to confess Jesus as Lord (Matthew 4:17; Mark 1:14-15; Acts 3:19; Romans 10:9-10); and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all pastors to present the Gospel message publicly in their weekly worship services and to make appeals in their sermons for people to receive Jesus as their Savior and Lord and to follow Him in believer’s baptism; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all pastors to lead the way in personally sharing the Gospel with unbelievers each week; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all Bible study teachers regularly to explain the Gospel in their lessons and routinely provide opportunity for unbelievers to repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ for salvation; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all congregations prayerfully to set goals and to implement intentional, evangelistic strategies that aim to increase the number of people they baptize in the coming year; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we commend the North American Mission Board, International Mission Board, state conventions, associations, and local churches in their efforts to train, equip, and mobilize Southern Baptists in the task of evangelism; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all ministry staffs, deacons, and church members to offer support as their pastors lead them to make disciples in consistent obedience to the Great Commission, both locally and globally; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge all Southern Baptists to evangelize consistently, intentionally, and compassionately, sharing the Gospel with unbelievers in their communities, their states, the nation, and the world; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That our pursuit and obedience to proclaim the Gospel will come from our great love for Jesus, our desire to glorify God, and to advance God’s kingdom.


View all 2016 Resolutions.