By Alexandra Richardson
The annual three-day “Faith in Practice” series began Oct. 17 in G.M. Savage Memorial Chapel, which was more full than normal with students and faculty who had come to hear Dr. Jimmy Scroggins, senior pastor of First Baptist Church of West Palm Beach, Fla.
This was Scroggins’ second year in a row to address students and faculty during the series.
Scroggins’ sermons revolved around how Christians should be acting as Jesus would if he were physically here on earth. He referenced the third chapter of Paul’s first epistle to the Corinthians during his first sermon.
He talked about a collision between what the Spirit is trying to do to advance the kingdom of Jesus and what is actually happening in the world.
“Because of the fallen situation of the world, people need a lot of hope,” Scroggins said. “Follow Christ, not religious leaders. Pin your hopes on Jesus and the Gospel.”
Scroggins advised those in attendance not to undervalue churches or their works. He said that if one wants to do what the spirit is doing, he must build up his church and serve the community.
“Believers will be judged based on what they did to build up the kingdom,” Scroggins said. “What you’re doing matters now.”
Faith in Practice week teaches people how to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives, said Dr. Gregory Thornbury, vice president for spiritual life and dean of the School of Theology and Missions.
“You have got to get your hallelujah to line up with your do-le-lu-jah,” Thornbury said, quoting his friend William McKinley Blackford IV, senior pastor of More Than Conquerors Christian Church in Louisville, Ky.
Scroggins also emphasized that people must not mistake following religious leaders as being the same as following Christ.
“Jimmy Scroggins really put what we need to do daily in our lives as Christians in to perspective,” said Alex Potts, freshman nursing major. “What we are doing now really does matter. Following Christ and not our religious leaders is key to having a good relationship with Him.”
In reference to Luke 15: 8-10, Scroggins spoke of how people are valuable to God and his kingdom.
“All of us are valuable because we were made in God’s image, but beyond that, we are valuable because God sent his son Jesus to die on the cross for us,” Scroggins said.
Scroggins also asserted that people are findable even if they have strayed from him. God wants the Christians who have drifted away to return to him. They have purpose in helping build up his kingdom.
“I love how Scroggins referred to people not only as valuable to God but also useful,” Potts said. “We all have a specific purpose and plan in our lives to help raise up God’s kingdom.”