Rev. James ‘Tex’ Thomas was the keynote speaker at the weekly IMF meeting on December 4. The IMF meetings are held at noon every Wednesday at Jefferson Street Baptist Church where Rev. Thomas was pastor for 46 years.
Rev. Thomas was also the former president of the Interdenominational Ministerial Fellowship. He was instrumental in building the foundation of the organization, which ensured its existence today.
Civil Rights leaders Rev. Jesse Jackson and Rev. Al Sharpton traveled to Nashville, and one of their first stops in the city was that of the historical Jefferson Street Baptist Church, where Rev. Thomas was pastor.
Rev. Aaron Marble, pastor of Jefferson Street Baptist Church gave the introduction. “I am honored to introduce the man whose shoulders I am standing on and whose shoes I have been selected to fill,” said Rev. Marble.
“Rev. James Thomas is a legendary icon in this city and around the country. This church and this city is a better place because of his leadership.”
The title of Rev. Thomas’ talk was ‘I’m Down But Not Out’ from Jeremiah 37, 17.
“I was in a Dallas jail cell when God called me to preach,” said Thomas. “I felt that I wasn’t qualified, and I did not want to preach. I soon realized in my wrestling with the Lord that God is not struggling to get folk to do his will. He doesn’t need people. We, in fact, need Him. I also realized that God uses evil folk to chastise so called good people.
“Today we need to watch folk who are fighting for us, as some of them have not been through enough to know what they are fighting for.
“President Trump is in office because we went to sleep and gave him the position. We have preachers who are sleeping today, and we have church members who are in church every Sunday, dressed up but secretly struggling.”
Rev. Thomas closed his sermon by saying: “Preachers and leaders need to come down to the issues of the people. The people who are down—that’s where God is.”
Roderick Reed, brother of Death Row Inmate Rodney Reed, was also present, as well as former Mayor Bill Purcell. There were also several supporters of Rodney Reed present in the audience.