New Birth Baptist Church has a passion for the lost. Their ministry is to strengthen the family through biblical principles outlined in God’s Word. They aim to: teach men how to lead in the God-given position He gave, teach women to nurture and be the support glue of the family unit, and to train children and youth to grow up into the men and women God has predestined them to be. But when the unit is fractured through an unfortunate incident, it is good to know that we serve a loving God who can mend any brokenness.
New Birth Baptist Church
New Birth Baptist Church is a megachurch in Lithonia, Georgia. Once pastored by Bishop Eddie Long until his recent passing. Today, Pastor Jamal Bryant leads the church with the vision to love, live, and lead like Christ. The church has the heart to serve by worshipping God through service, love, evangelism, and discipleship. They believe in building strong families. One of the dedicated ministries of New Birth Baptist Church is the Prison Ministry.
New Birth Baptist Church: Prison Ministry
Many first-time offenders sit in a cell and wonder why they chose to do what they did. They are filled with regret and wish they could hit the rewind button and make a different decision than the one that landed them where they are. They think of home: the spouse who would lose respect, the children who would not understand, and the job they most likely would no longer have once they are released. Consequences never thought of, until they had this moment in the stillness with nothing but their thoughts to keep them company.
New Birth Baptist Church first challenged its church with a “Bail Out” program. This program is designed to offer those first-time nonviolent offenders a second chance. In addition to giving these men and women their freedom, the church assigns a mentor to each individual for ongoing weekly check-ins. They provide a way to help them make the right decisions by sharing God’s word, prayer, and accountability.
The raised money is also used to assist with college education for their children.
New Birth Baptist Church: God of Second Chances
If you are reading this and you have screwed up, know you are in good company. Many prominent figures in the Bible have found themselves on the receiving end of the consequences of poor choices. Here are just a few drops in the bucket:
- David – The man after God’s own heart. The man who conquered the giant then became king of Israel, and was in the lineage of Jesus Christ himself; he succumbed to the temptation of sin. He found himself in the pit of despair, but at the end of his rope, he found a forgiving God.
- Peter – Peter walked with the Lord. He was there for the feeding of the five thousand, he was there when Christ walked on the water (Peter even took a stroll on the sea himself), and he was there the night they arrested Jesus. He was bold, calling a curse down when Jesus told him that he would deny Him three times that night. But what happened when Peter’s feet were held to the fire, he did just that; he fell into the fears and gave into them. He watched Christ die, knowing what he had done. But the story does not end there. Peter also saw him risen, and he, too, was given another chance.
- Paul – Yes, David gave in to sexual temptation; Peter let pride get in his way of admitting he knew the Savior, but Paul? He put Christians in prison, even had a hand in executing some of them. Now, what chance would he have at a second chance? The answer is every single chance there ever was. God took who he was and made him into who He wanted him to be.
New Birth Baptist Church: Challenge Accepted
The original goal was to raise $40,000 in 40 days at the beginning of Lent. But after the metro movement heard about what New Birth was doing, they stepped up to help. Two popular names were among those who used their voice to help raise funds. Rapper T.I. and Love and Hip Hop: Atlanta star Scrap Deleon assisted the church in raising $120,000 toward the “Bail Out” Prison Ministry Program.
23 first time nonviolent offenders were given a second chance, just in time to celebrate the Easter holiday with their families. In an effort to continue the rehabilitation, the church holds a weekly meeting for those in the program. The Freedom Support Program is an eight-session, two-month rehab program to give emotional and spiritual encouragement to those recently released. They give them hope for a future and provide job finding service should it be needed.
The primary focus of the “Bail Out” Program and the Freedom Support Program of New Birth Baptist Church is to reach out to those who have made poor decisions, showing them that God does love them and that He is the God of second chances.