The Rev. Fred Luter, center, was awarded the Campbellsville University Leadership Award at CU’s chapel service April 10. From left are: the Rev. John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president; Dr. Joseph Owens, chair of the Board of Trustees; Luter; Dr. Michael V. Carter, president of Campbellsville University; and Dr. Frank Cheatham, senior vice president for academic affairs. (Campbellsville University Photo by Christina Kern)
By Christina L. Kern, office assistant
CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky.— “I believe in victorious living—He didn’t save us just to give us fire insurance from hell,” the Rev. Fred Luter, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, said in chapel at Campbellsville University April 10.
Luter is the first African-American president of the Southern Baptist Convention and is the senior pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans, La.
His church was in nine feet of water after Hurricane Katrina hit. Dr. Michael V. Carter, president of Campbellsville University, while introducing Luter at chapel, said Luter’s ministry “lived through the depth of hardship, but resurrected to great strength.”
Luter’s church has over 7,000 members today.
| Luter preaches about having a renewed mind at
Campbellsville University’s chapel service April 10.
(Campbellsville University Photo by Christina Kern)
Luter was awarded the Campbellsville University Leadership Award during the chapel service. Carter defined a true leader as someone who takes individuals farther than they can believe themselves.
“It is difficult to pull off victorious Christian living on a regular basis. If we are going to the light and the salt of the earth, we need the mind of Christ to do His work,” Luter said.
It is important to have a renewed mind he said. “There is not a minute our mind is not tempted by the enemy. The enemy comes against the mind of a believer. There comes something we know we shouldn’t do, but before that minute has passed we find ourselves seduced, we find ourselves enticed, we find ourselves punked by the enemy,” Luter said.
He said no one is exempt from the schemes of the enemy. It doesn’t matter your position, age, race, education or vocation, “none of us are exempt” and “Satan will do all he can to attack the mind.”
Luter said Satan got to the mind of Adam and Eve, Cain who killed Abel, Jacob who fooled his own father, David and Bathsheba, the prodigal’s son, Judas who betrayed our Savior and Peter who denied Jesus. “But Satan didn’t stop at the Bible. For those sitting here, Satan is impacting lives. Our minds have been bamboozled. How can we be salt in this society?”
He said, “In Philippians 2, Paul is saying if believers are going to be victorious and be able to stand, we must have a renewed mind.”
Luter said a renewed mind should help you think about your Christ, help you think about your choices and think about the cross.
He said a renewed mind should help you think about Christ and all Jesus has done for you. “He left his home in glory to come down and help us. He brought sanctification and justification for us, and He’s coming back for you and me… when I think about what He has done for me, my soul shouts ‘Hallelujuah!’”
Luter said a renewed mind should help you think about your choices. “Jesus didn’t allow his heavenly position to interfere with his earthly responsibilities. He made a choice to please the Father. We have freedom to make our own choices, but we should make sure they please the Heavenly Father.”
He said in order to make the right choices we must know what God says about our choices. We must look to the Bible for God’s advice in our choices such as it says in Proverbs 3:5 to “Trust in the Lord and lean not on your own understanding…”
“Every choice you make leads to a consequence. A consequence can be a blessing or a burden,” Luter said.
“Would Judas make the same decision if he knew the consequence of his decision? Would David and Peter make the decisions if they knew the consequences? Would Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, the Kardashian sisters and Whitney Houston make the same decisions in their lives if they knew the consequences? Every choice you make leads to a consequence and the choices you make today will lead to a consequence.”
A renewed mind should also help you think about the cross.
Luter said, “Every preacher talked about Jesus’ suffering on Good Friday.”
He said the nails, the crown of thorns and the sword in his side should help us think about the cross. His cries from the cross should help us think about the cross.
“He died for us, but that’s not how the story ends! Three days later he rose from the grave!”
Luter said his life was changed by the hymn “At the Cross.”
He said, “Let your minds be renewed to think about Christ, to think about your choices and to think about the cross.”
Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,600 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is campbellsville.edu.