Nothing gets my blood flowing more than thinking about lives being impacted by consistent teaching of God’s Word. Through the years the Lord has allowed me to play a small role in that process, first as a pastor and now as a leader of an organization that provides resources to churches. Church-based instruction has been a longtime priority for our publishing ministry, Regular Baptist Press. In Mount Rushmore fashion, an RBP team of dedicated and gifted editorial directors has lined up over decades, fleshing out a vision for providing teaching resources into offering products to churches. Merle Hull, Vernon Miller, David Gower, and Alex Bauman compose this distinguished legacy of leadership. What a thrilling heritage of producing materials that are true to the Word of God and encourage maturity in Christ!
However, we can’t rest on our laurels. The publishing world is changing rapidly. Opportunities are opening to RBP, requiring new approaches to keep up with product expansion, formatting changes, and multiple delivery systems. In addition to our long-standing curriculum line, RBP has grown to include a book publishing division, Spanish curriculum, children’s Bible program, and other ventures in design. The shift to digital delivery of products, along with online learning venues, is requiring new skill sets and strategies.
Capitalizing on these opportunities requires a continual learning curve. Besides the relentless demand of the production cycle, new relationships must be built to raise awareness of our publishing ministry, resulting in new users and writers. After thoughtful consideration and collaboration involving RBP leader Alex Bauman, administrative team members, and the Council of Eighteen personnel and publishing committees, we have reconfigured the administrative oversight of RBP. By appointing former RBP director Alex Bauman to a new position as director of educational resources, he will be able to focus his time and energy on curriculum development and production. Alex’s ability in curriculum design is a great asset to our organization. His knowledge of education and theology, his writing and editing expertise, organization skills, work ethic, and attention to detail ensure RBP’s reputation of high quality and doctrinal integrity.
In continuing to grow and develop our publishing ministry, the administrative responsibilities of RBP are now under the leadership of a seasoned veteran of church education ministry, Dr. John Klem. (See John’s profile and vision.) I am confident in John’s Biblical skills and theological integrity. He brings deep knowledge and years of experience in education and administration to this important leadership role. John is well connected in circles that coincide with the RBP market. He is rooted in our doctrinal convictions and the local church, as well as being forward thinking in his instructional approaches. He is a team player who I believe will mesh well with our staff.
John is a gifted teacher of the Word. He delights in showing how the authorial intent of God’s Word speaks to issues of current life and culture. He will use his instructional skills in writing, new product development, online instruction, social media communication, and conference and pulpit ministry. He will be building relationships, making new friends for RBP.
This strategic personnel decision is part of a larger plan to position Regular Baptist Ministries for long-term viability. During the June 2015 GARBC Conference, Manning Brown began his new role as director of Regular Baptist Chaplaincy. Manning is providing support and cover for chaplains who proclaim Christ in an essential arena littered with the landmines of changing societal values. Michael Nolan, director of Regular Baptist Builders Club, is ramping up the services of this long-standing ministry to fund new church-planting endeavors, assist established churches with financial support and consultation, and come alongside churches affected by natural disasters. Chris Hindal, director of Regular Baptist International, is leveraging the global network of like-minded independent Baptist associations to pursue making disciples of all nations.
These ministries are each rooted in the association of Regular Baptist Churches. The association’s values of Biblical authority, doctrinal clarity, Great Commission focus, expositional preaching, mutual respect, ministry balance, compassionate care, and loving confrontation create a culture for an operational church ministry network. Together these values provide a platform for distinctive ministry. In my role as national representative, I facilitate information sharing in this wide-reaching network of churches and ministries and coordinate efforts in pursuing Christ’s Great Commission assignment.
Can you sense the blood surging through my veins? I am excited to see how the Lord will grow our association, using it to impact lives in the work of evangelizing and teaching. “Together Regular Baptist Churches can accomplish more!”
John Greening is national representative of the General Association of Regular Baptist Churches.