In Jeremiah 29:7, the great prophet challenged the exiles in Babylon to minister where they were planted, to “pursue the well-being of the city.” Babylon was a great city with deep needs—not unlike our city of New Orleans. And, not unlike the Jewish captives, God has called graduates and students of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary to faithfully invest in this city for more than a century now.
These individuals, and thousands like them around the world, make NOBTS such a special place. They live out the school’s values, such as doctrinal integrity, in their communities each day for the sake of the gospel. And they are the ones who make NOBTS worthy of your financial support.
Pastor Chad Gilbert represents these faithful servants well. Before a recent move to Lake Charles, Louisiana, Chad served New Orleans for a decade as pastor of Edgewater Baptist Church. Since he grew up in nearby Baton Rouge, Chad was no stranger to the well-earned reputation of New Orleans. He knew the city had problems—and, initially, he had no desire to minister there.
But God had other ideas.
I wanted nothing to do with New Orleans. So, you can imagine my apprehension when my wife, Cole, and I sensed the Lord was leading us there early in our marriage. Even then, our plan was to complete school and leave the city upon graduation. But God changed our hearts during our first year at NOBTS. Eventually, our prayer became, “Lord, would you please allow us to stay in New Orleans for a lifetime.” We ended up staying 14 years in a city we still love.
For 10 years I was blessed to serve as pastor of Edgewater Baptist Church in the Gentilly neighborhood. Hurricane Katrina had devastated the church’s facility and scattered its congregation in 2005. So, I when began pastoring Edgewater in August of 2008, I was working in a still-recovering community that was open to genuine care and was grateful for what my predecessor, Pastor Kevin Lee, had provided in terms of disaster relief.
My training at NOBTS cemented in my mind the importance of “a cup of cold water in Jesus’ name.” Early in my ministry, I probably would have given out “cold water,” but failed to do it in Jesus’ name (that is, for the advancement of the gospel). Later, as the city returned to “normal” it would have been easy to do ministry in “Jesus’ name” while expecting people to find their “cold water” elsewhere. But NOBTS taught me that bold compassion (a cup of cold water) and bold proclamation (in Jesus’ name) should always go together. I learned that doctrinal integrity exists where conviction and practice and Biblical truth all intersect.
—Chad Gilbert, former pastor
Edgewater Baptist Church
Chad Gilbert developed a heart for the well-being of the city. And God used his training at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary to nurture a deep respect for both doctrinal integrity and providing “cold water” to hurting people.
Honestly, that’s the kind of impact NOBTS students and graduates have every day. And that’s what makes your financial support so vital. Each semester, students are learning to be Jesus’ hands and feet in New Orleans and around the world. They are experiencing God’s call on their lives in deeper ways. But they cannot do it alone. Your generous gift can help them keep their focus on their studies and their ministries.
Your donation to the Providence Fund will transform lives. First, it will make a difference in the lives of NOBTS students since every dollar goes toward supporting low tuition. But it will also have an impact on others, as our students pursue the welfare of their communities by sharing the gospel. Your support will change someone’s eternity by equipping NOBTS students to fulfill the Great Commission for their generation.
Chad Gilbert and many like him believe in the mission of NOBTS, its faculty, and its staff. In fact, he included one closing thought that I want to share with you: The seminary’s best days are ahead. Now is the time to invest!
It’s our prayer that you will do what you can to help our school realize its best days ever. We are asking you to make an eternal investment in the life and ministry of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
Don’t let another moment pass. Begin changing lives today.
Yours & His,
P.S. Every dollar given to the Providence Fund goes into our operating budget, which directly supports our students and faculty. We’re already looking forward to a great 2019-20 school year! Don’t miss out on being a part of what God is doing on our campus! If you’d like more information, please visit us online at nobts.edu/donate.
To learn more about this and other ways you can give, check out the Providence Fund Folder on our website.
Contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-662-8701 ext. 3252 to speak with Nancy Whatley.