The Orlando Campus will host the 3rd annual Ministry Forum for pastors and ministry leaders on Saturday, November 4th from 8:15 am - 1:30 pm. The event will feature a variety of speakers who will examine and discuss various cultural issues from a Biblical perspective. Cost is only $10. Includes lunch.
Schedule for the Day:
8:15 am - 9:00 am ... Registration & Continental Breakfast
9:10 am - 10:00 am ... Concurrent Session #1: Glenn Stewart - "A Biblical Perspective on Suffering" / Scott Toenges, "Ministry in a Pluralist Society"
10:10 am - 11:00 am ... Concurrent Session #2: Miguel Benitez - "Christian Engagement in the Arts" / Jon Grenz, "Gen Z Goes to Church: Understanding & Reaching this Generation"
11:10 am - 12:00 pm ... Concurrent Session #3: Marcos Peres - "Understanding & Conquering Pornography" / Tomas Lares - "Ending Modern Day Slavery in our Own Backyard"
12:10 pm - 1:30 pm ... Lunch & Plenary Session: Julie Hamilton - "Understanding & Responding to Childhood Gender Identity Confusion & Homosexuality"
Expanded Session Descriptions:
Dr. Scott Toenges: "Ministry in a Pluralist Society"
Was Jesus just a good moral teacher, or merely a spiritual leader, like Buddha, Krishna, Confucius, and Muhammad? Or is he something more--something else entirely? In The Uniqueness of Christianity, apologist Dr. Scott Toenges offers a biblical and historical portrait of Jesus, grounded in the claims Jesus makes about himself. He also helps students understand the competing philosophies of religious pluralism, inclusivism, and exclusivism. The result is a clearer understanding of what sets Jesus apart as not simply a teacher to follow but God himself, worthy of our full allegiance and worship.
Glenn Stewart: "A Biblical Perspective on Suffering"
It was 16 months ago that I was shocked to discover my recent MRI showed I had an inoperable malignant brain tumor. Brain cancer! Further testing showed it was grade 4, so I wasn’t expected to have a lot of time. I have outlived the original time-frame. Suffering! At some time, and in some way, we all face suffering. This is the story of life. Some care for family members with life-long disabilities. Others face a cancer diagnosis, the fear of cancer’s return, a crumbling marriage, the loss of employment, financial reversals, or disasters. Those are prominent and easily thought of but there are so many more hardships (physically, mentally, emotionally, relationally, financially, and spiritually). What it all has in common is it hurts. It causes us to struggle. I am not trying to be morbid or discouraging but want us to face the reality of our sufferings. I want us to gain some hopeful and helpful perspective that won’t remove suffering but may help you and your congregation walk through it more confidently and calmly.
Dr. Jonathan Grenz: "Gen Z Goes to Church: Understanding & Reaching this Generation"
The oldest of Generation Z, born from 1995 through 2010, are just now entering into adulthood. What are the general characteristics of this generation? How are we researching them with the Gospel? And how are we preparing them to address the critical issues facing the world today and in the future?
Miguel Benitez: "Christian Engagement in the Arts"
Western Civilization has been marked by the relentless search for goodness, truth, and beauty. The Christian Church has historically worked to demonstrate that God is the ultimate source of these realities. Yet, in our modern culture, the arts have been increasingly dominated by non-Christian thinking. In this session we will explore how Christians can thoughtfully approach and engage the arts. Likewise, careful attention will be given to avoiding the all-too-common error of so many Christians, a dismissive attitude toward the arts in general.
Marcos Peres: "Understanding & Conquering Pornography"
Individuals, society, and the church are in the sexual battle of a lifetime. Living in, what’s probably, one of the more hyper sexualized cultures in history, where Christian values and principles are under constant attack, and where each day the moral bar appears to hit a new low in society, the issue of sexual exploitation has grown to catastrophic proportions, and has positioned itself as the number one weapon the enemy is using against the church. One of the biggest proliferators of this problem is pornography. Pornography is a topic that the church tends to shy away from, and unfortunately it’s an issue that’s tearing the church apart from the inside out, and it needs to be tackled head on. Join us as Marcos presents on the biblical, cultural, scientific, and developmental perspectives on pornography. He’ll expose the factors that put children at risk for porn addiction as well as how to prevent such addiction. Additionally, he’ll present ways that pastors and Christian leaders can respond Biblically to this issue.
Tomas J. Lares: "Ending Modern Day Slavery in our Own Backyard"
Ever since Rudyard Kipling coined the phrase that referenced prostitution as “the world's oldest profession” in 1888, it has been quoted across cultures and political systems throughout our world for generations. And over the centuries, this ancient “profession” has long left a dark stain in the annals of humanity, as a culturally accepted norm, continually desensitizing society to view prostitution as just that, “a profession,” when nothing could be further from the truth. When in fact, there are human beings, image bearers of God, with dignity and inalienable rights, being sexually exploited for the commercial benefit and pleasure of others, against their will. That is not a profession, it is not ancient, and it is not a third world problem, it is slavery, it exists today and it is here in our backyards. Join us as Tomas answers questions such as: What is the link between prostitution and human trafficking? Is there a difference? Are victims willfully subjecting themselves to this "lifestyle" or are they victims? As believers what should our response be to modern-day human slavery?
Dr. Julie Hamilton: "Understanding & Responding to Childhood Gender Identity Confusion & Homosexuality"
Homosexuality and childhood gender identity confusion are topics that generate a lot of attention at this time in our culture. Unfortunately, however, most of the answers that are found in our culture are completely contrary to God’s Word, and therefore, incredibly destructive. As this problem increases, it is very important for pastors to understand this issue both from a biblical perspective as well as from a developmental and scientific perspective. In this presentation, Dr. Julie Harren Hamilton discusses childhood gender identity confusion as well as homosexuality. She presents the biblical, cultural, scientific, and developmental perspectives on gender identity and homosexual attractions. She addresses factors that put children at risk for gender identity confusion as well as how to prevent such confusion. Additionally, she presents ways that pastors and Christian leaders can respond biblically to this issue.