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Banquet speaker: ‘preach with 2 hands’

Dr. Ted Traylor, pastor of Olive Baptist Church in Pensacola, Fla., and a radio and television show host, told attendees at the 15th annual Sav-A-Life banquet Monday that it’s important to preach with “both hands.”

“For too long, I preached with one hand behind my back,” said Traylor, who was the keynote speaker for the event. “I was all about preaching the ‘good news,’ which is the Gospel, but I wasn’t also preaching the ‘good works.’ For so much of my life, I was holding back something important from my congregation. Here at Sav-A-Life in Covington County, you’re preaching with both hands.

“When you give a single mother a package of diapers, you’re doing good works. And when you also tell that mother about Jesus Christ, you’re doing good news. And when you do both good news and good works, you’re doing the work of the Kingdom (of God).”

Sav-A-Life of Covington County is an interdenominational non-profit Christian ministry committed to helping pregnant women make the choice of life. The ministry sees approximately 100 visitors per month, and, according to literature handed out at the banquet, already this year three future mothers have changed their minds about having an abortion.

“This is a wonderful thing that you’ve been able to cross denominational lines,” said Traylor, whose jokes drew several laughs throughout the evening. “I can’t even get every one in my own church to do anything together, half the time!”

Traylor said humanity currently lives in a generation where “demonic powers hate babies.” He also noted that the devil previously tried to kill “the law-giver” (Moses) and “the grace-giver” (the baby Jesus, whom King Herod tried to have killed).

“The reason those demonic powers hate babies is because (the demonic powers) hate the Lord Jesus,” he said. “And because Jesus said he loves ‘the least of these,’ then the devil hates them, too.

“This banquet is about reaching out to touch life. It’s our duty; it’s our job; and it’s our responsibility.”

The theme of Monday’s banquet was “For Such A Time As This,” which is based on a verse from the Book of Esther. Traylor said this is a “perfect time” for a ministry devoted to helping save the unborn.

“This is about putting together our hands for a time such as this,” he said. “At a time when many people in the world are casting children away, you’re standing up and saying, ‘No, they count.’”

District Judge Frank “Trippy” McGuire introduced Traylor, calling him, “someone who is unapologetic about Christian issues.” Beth Dean provided special music during the banquet; the Rev. Johnny R. Davis, pastor of First Baptist Church of Whatley Street, gave the invocation; and the Rev. Clyde Northrop, chairman of the Sav-A-Life board of directors, gave the benediction.