An Introduction to The Nehemiah Project
(Blog entry by Pastor Jerry Ingalls)
With over 106 years of ministry in New Castle, we, the First Baptist Church, are following the leadership of the Holy Spirit to kick off a new era of our life and ministry. We are calling this initiative “The Nehemiah Project”, and it begins on September 11, 2016.
This initiative is founded on faith in Jesus Christ and empowered by the Holy Spirit. We will move forward together through the Word of God; specifically, gleaning principles from the great Old Testament book of Nehemiah. Here are three questions you may have about this initiative:
1. Why the word “project”?
The dictionary defines project as a “collaborative enterprise that is carefully planned and designed to achieve a particular aim.” Churches who follow Jesus Christ have one big project: the transformation of people’s stories through the gospel.
This project is designed to help people fully participate on this journey and collaborate together to achieve God’s purposes in our community. Throughout these 10 weeks, everyone will be given many invitations to get more involved, not only with this specific Nehemiah Project, but more importantly with the overall project of glorifying God while dwelling here on Earth.
2. Why the book of Nehemiah?
Nehemiah 1:8-9 states, “Remember the word that you commanded your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples, but if you return to me and keep my commandments and do them, though your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there I will gather them and bring them to the place that I have chosen, to make my name dwell there.’”
Nehemiah is a call to repentance and renewal. Throughout this series we believe the Holy Spirit is going to call FBC as a whole, and as individuals, to search our hearts, acknowledge past and present sin, confess those sins and repent of them. Why? Because God is calling FBC to renew our covenant as God’s people, His Church. God is calling us to move into the future as a people who constantly search our hearts, confess, repent, and renew our covenant with God and one another. This is God’s desire for us as His people.
3. Why us and why now?
God is calling His Church to repent and renew the ancient covenant of God, as the people of God, so that He may use us right now in our communities. God wants to reach the lost. God is calling not just our local communities and families back to Himself, but also nations and people groups.
God’s aim is bigger than us, but it must begin in us and then move through us. So, the question is not, “Why FBC?” Rather, it is “Why not FBC?” We can’t delay any longer; we can’t set the stage any longer, we have been praying and fasting and the time is now to heed the call of God on our congregation. We each and collectively are called to get right with God and with one another; to answer God’s call to be His Church for the sake of our community. The only hope for this lost and dying world is found in the Church of Jesus Christ. That is who we are, this is the situation we find ourselves in today, and we have a choice.
We are God’s people, this is God’s timing, and we are called to work together to build the Church to the glory of Jesus Christ.
This is “The Nehemiah Project” and it is the beginning of a new day for God’s people. Why can’t it begin right here in New Castle, Indiana for the sake of the nations to the glory of God?!?
You have been called for a moment such as this and you are invited to a cause greater than yourself. Your mission awaits . . .
To learn more about the Nehemiah Project, look at other Blog Posts or look under Videos and Audio on this Website.
September 11th – Pastor Jerry Ingalls began this series and spoke on Nehemiah 1, Recognizing the Need