Cooperative Missions


October 12, 2016

Cooperative Missions lessons are topic-based studies that can be dropped into any existing adult ministry to teach and explain what it means to be Southern Baptist.

What is the Cooperative Program? Why is it important? Who are our Cooperative Program Partners and why is it important to connect with these partners?

Lessons descriptions are below:

Cooperative Program
The situation in Jerusalem was severe. After Pentecost, the church in Jerusalem had grown rapidly. (make sure everyone understands what happened during Pentecost.) satan, however, hates to see God at work anywhere. In the seventh chapter of Acts, we read that the Jewish authorities killed stephen, making him the first martyr of the new Testament. The beginning of the next chapter tells us: “saul agreed with putting him to death. On that day a severe persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem, and all except the apostles were scattered throughout the land of Judea and samaria” (Acts 8:1).

As the church scattered, it also shared the gospel with others. Paul, Barnabas, Philip, and others evangelized wherever they went. As a result, churches were created—strong churches in relatively stable environments. some Christians felt led to stay in Jerusalem and minister in the hostile situation. However, their persecution was taking a terrible toll. Family members were put in prison; believers lost their jobs or were discriminated against. Poverty threatened to stop the spread of the gospel in Jerusalem.

State and National Conventions
The author of Ecclesiastes is most often thought to be solomon, son of King David. Although there are many conservative scholars who believe there was a different author, the traditional view cites evidence in Ecclesiastes 1:1 where the author identifies himself as “son of David, king in Jerusalem.”

In the book of Ecclesiastes, the phrase “everything is meaningless” or “everything is vanity” is used many times. These words do not paint a very optimistic picture of the author’s view of the world and human existence. However, the Hebrew word for meaning or vanity is hebel, which is literally translated breath. This understanding, combined with the phrase under the sun, which follows in most of the verses where everything is meaningless appears, shows a different perspective. Rather than having a negative view of his surroundings, the author of Ecclesiastes has the wisdom to realize that earthly existence is brief (but a breath) and material possessions gained while here are of no eternal value.

Associations -Together For One Purpose
While ministering in Ephesus Paul received disturbing news from fellow believers in Corinth of dissensions taking place there.  Some individuals were loyal to specific leaders, while others shared different views on worship, spiritual gifts, and what was acceptable behavior for Christians. Paul writes to the Corinthians with the hope of restoring unity and to answer the questions they have.

Throughout chapter 12 of 1 Corinthians, Paul teaches that we are all individuals with specific gifts and talents. We are all called to use our gifts and talents to perform a task. When we refuse to accept the task assigned us, not only are we living in disobedience, but also someone around us suffers because of our inactivity. Just as each part of the human body was created for a unique purpose, Christians are all gifted with a unique ability to minister. We are all individuals uniquely fashioned by the Creator, but we make up one body—the church. That body is called to reach out and minister to those around it.

Annie Armstrong Easter Offering

We often call the apostle Paul (in this passage, he is still known as saul) the first missionary of the new Testament church. In the Acts 13 passage, we see Barnabas is also a part of Paul’s initial missionary voyage. Even more important than the identities of these missionaries, however, are two principles of missions we must not miss.

The Annie Armstrong Easter Offering is the recipe southern Baptists have used since 1934 to help reach north America for Jesus Christ. This offering has been used mightily by God to expand the gospel to all the United states and Canada.  Find out why.

Lottie Moon Christmas Offering

Luke gives special attention to Christ’s high regard for women as he tells of: mary and Elizabeth (Luke 1 and 2); Anna (Luke 2:36–38); Joanna (Luke 8:3 and 24:10); the widow of nain (Luke 7:11–18); the sinful woman who anointed him (Luke 7:36–50); and the widow who persevered with the judge (Luke 18:1–8). Perhaps Lottie moon shared a special preference for the Gospel of Luke given her ongoing passion for women serving on the mission field.

The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering® (LmCO) represents 55 percent of the International mission Board’s total income. Every penny given goes to support southern Baptist missionaries serving overseas.  Find out why.