Welcome to the historic First Baptist Church of Memphis, serving Memphis & the Mid-South since 1839. You will find exciting ministries, mission opportunities, and vibrant worship.

Sunday Mornings:

9:30am Sunday School
11:00am Worship

Wednesday Evenings:

5:00pm Dinner
6:00pm Bible Study


200 East Parkway North, Memphis, TN 38112 ⋅ Office: 901.454.1131

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Where Do We Go From Here?

Lent is a season of repentance, a season of confession, a season of getting honest to God honest with God about those ways that our failings still lead to the Cross, with the trust that now as always there is hope for ones such as us in God’s grace, not just to be forgiven but to be redeemed and to do better.

And this year, we, especially here in Memphis, have the opportunity for a unique Lenten experience. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 14, and runs up to Easter, April 1. Three days later, April 4, we will observe the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. King; so the preparation for both major events will be running concurrently. I can think of little more fitting. 

The parallels between the stories of Christ and Dr. King are quite striking. One marched to Jerusalem and to a cross. The other marched to Birmingham and in Washington, DC, and elsewhere, and last here in Memphis. One seemingly knew that death was coming. One sensed that it might be coming, though undoubtedly did not see it coming as soon, and in the way it did. I think Dr. King would be the first to say not to draw direct comparisons between himself and Jesus. Christ was his Savior as well. It was because of the call of Christ on his life and in service to the cause of Christ that Dr. King did and said and lived and ultimately died as he did.  Dr. King was no peer of Christ.  He was a servant of Christ. But precisely because of that, there are unmistakable parallels too, namely, for whom they marched.  They marched for those that God loved, especially the least of these and the equality and inclusion and justice and salvation that God sought to bring to them and everyone. Their stories also share, of course, a tragic ending.  Both found out that there is a high cost to pay for prophetically calling out those who refuse to stand by and with those that God stands by and with.
So this Lent with the examples of Christ and his disciple Dr. King before us, we have the opportunity to truly look at ourselves and ask, “How faithful have we been to take up our cross and follow Christ on behalf of the least of these?” How far have we come in these centuries since Christ called us to build the Kingdom of God? How far have we come in these decades since Dr. King called us to build the Beloved Community? What do we need to confess, past and present? To what do we need to re-commit? What is left to do?  Where Do We Go From Here?  How do we find the Strength to Love everyone better than we ever have before?

You could say there’s actually nothing really special about church seasons and anniversaries. They’re just days and we can take time on any day to reflect on such questions. And that is true. But seasons of reflection and worship are not just personal disciplines, they are corporate engagements as well. We do them better together, as we lean in and listen not just to what God is teaching us, but what God is teaching others as well.  Remember, as our sign says, “We Will Get There Together Or We Won’t Get There At All.” So this Lent, as we prepare for Holy Week and MLK50, let’s be present to each other and our community. Let’s not miss this opportunity to participate in the redemption that God is seeking to bring not just to us and ours, but to everyone, especially those here in our own city.  
Grace, David


This article was written by Rev. Dr. David Breckenridge and originally published in the February edition of Together.

Posted by Bridget Ellis at 9:33 AM
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200 East Parkway North, Memphis TN 38112
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