Paul’s exhortation to steadfastness, immovability, and an abounding work in the Lord encouraged those he called, “my beloved brethren” (1 Cor. 15:58). This apostolic love for fellow believers was not unique to Paul. The Apostle John commands, “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God” (1 John 4:7). To obey this command is to be godly. John continues: “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him” (vv. 8-9).
Clearly, the beloved of God must love one another. Having been richly blessed by the exemplary brotherly love of Hope Baptist Church of Hanover, PA this week, during our annual family conference, we sincerely thank you, our brothers and sisters, for your hospitality and generosity toward us. Under the leadership of your faithful pastor and our beloved co-laborer, Brother Al Harris, your expressions of love have encouraged in us what Paul desired to encourage in the local church at Corinth.
These expressions of love have included the use of your beautiful facility, logistical help from your talented staff, making preparations for our Sight and Sound outing, delicious meals and refreshments expertly prepared, thoughtful gift bags, and the spirit of grace and joy that accompanied each kind gift and every generous good deed.
Therefore we, the Independent Baptist Fellowship of North America meeting at its annual family conference, June 21-23, 2022, give our sincere thanks to you, the members of Hope Baptist Church, for these expressions of love for Christ and His church. We resolve to learn from your example of love and to follow that example with greater love for one another as sister churches. And we look forward to continued blessing from the Lord as we strive together with you to “be steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord; for as much as [we] know that [our] labor is not in vain in the Lord.”