Check in here to read our monthly BSU newsletter from the BSU Director, posted in the Shoal Creek Baptist Association Broadcaster.
Many local churches are hesitant or skeptical about Christian groups that meet together each week that aren’t necessarily attached to a church. The Baptist Student Union is one such group, a Christian group that isn’t necessarily attached to a local church, and as such, it’s important for the BSU to speak on the matter.
The Baptist Student Union is not a local church and it’s not a replacement for the local church. BSU students are encouraged to attend a local church.
The BSU is comprised of believers who make up the Body of Christ, and we often refer to this Body as the Church, but Scripture has clearly defined the institution of the local church. Those definitions are exposited in the Baptist Faith & Message 2000. Skimming over article “VI. The Church” would have
some believe that a good and faithful BSU could be a church. The BSU is a local congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel, and notably seeking to
spread that gospel to the ends of the earth. The BSU also has a Director who operates in nearly all of the same ways as a pastor does.
Though the BSU could be considered a local church if one was willing to stretch the governing laws, definitions, and requirements associated with the local church, there are some obvious problems with
doing so. The first is the simple fact that the “congregation” members in the BSU are expected to leave within 1-4 years depending on the college. The second is that the BSU is not a place where “all of the
redeemed of all the ages…” are expected to meet, the BSU is only for college students. Is there biblical support for a church that only focuses on one specific people group for just a few years? Nope.
There are more serious problems that could be discussed, but these simple objections are enough to convince us that the BSU cannot be considered a local church. So, what is it then?
The BSU is an extension of the local church. As an extension of the church, the BSU should model the church in any areas that it can. Many recognize that there are five functions of the local church; Teaching, Evangelism, Worship, Service, and Fellowship. These functions encompass how a church serves its Lord and its congregation. They also encompass the lifestyle expectations that all Christians are given from Scripture. It is my belief and vision that the Crowder College BSU should model all 5 of these
functions, while acknowledging our status as an extension of the institution of local churches.
Copied from our website, here are five overarching ways that the BSU will model these functions.
Teaching – The BSU is a welcoming place where believers learn and are equipped from the Inspired Word of God.
Evangelism – Students experience the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ at the BSU, and are equipped to share that experience.
Worship – The BSU worships the Lord during every activity, and also has dedicated musical worships
nights and events.
Service – The BSU serves its Jerusalem, Judea/Samaria, and the World through local and international missions and projects.
Fellowship – The BSU is place to find community, build relationships, and simply have fun and hangout!
For more on the beliefs and mindset behind the BSU, visit crowderbsu.com, the website has been heavily updated. To the local churches, always feel free to reach out with suggestions, concerns, encouragement, or partnership opportunities.
- Austin Pfrimmer, BSU Director
Excerpt from the Shoal Creek Baptist Association Broadcaster