The battle of ideas is not a matter of intellectual strength but is most fundamentally a spiritual war in which our very souls are at stake, SBTS President R. Albert Mohler Jr. told students and faculty gathered Tuesday morning for fall convocation at Alumni Memorial Chapel.
Southern’s convocation marked the return of in-person chapel for the first time since March of 2020 when twice-weekly services were interrupted by the pandemic. As in the past, SBTS will hold chapel worship services on Tuesday and Thursday each week throughout the fall semester.
“By the grace of God, we are here, and we give him thanks for this incredible privilege,” Mohler said. Mohler preached to a packed chapel from Philippians 4:8-9, “Think on These Things: How to Keep Your Soul While Expanding Your Mind.”
“We’re in a battle of ideas and that becomes ever more apparent to us,” he said. “(Southern Seminary) was born into a battle of ideas in 1859. Throughout its history, it’s been part of that battle of ideas—sometimes even central to that battle of ideas.
The Alumni Academy Greek and Hebrew for Life Conference July 30-31 at Southern Seminary gave over 200 participants the chance to retain or revive their biblical language skills.
The event was co-sponsored by Daily Dose of Greek and Hebrew and featured an audience of alumni, current students, and many attendees outside of SBTS who were drawn to campus by the Daily Dose ministry.
Rob Plummer, Collin and Evelyn Aikman Professor of Biblical Studies at SBTS and host of Daily Dose of Greek, is excited to see Christians desiring to know God’s Word better. Alumni Academy was last held on campus in January of 2019.
SBTS Hires New Director for Hispanic Online Program July 23, 2021
Roberto Carrera has been named director for Online Hispanic Program (OHP) at Southern Seminary. Southern serves an increasingly global and diverse network of churches—making OHP a critical avenue for delivering theological education to Hispanic leaders.
SBTS President Albert Mohler said the Hispanic program is important to the seminary’s mission, particularly since the destructive weeds of prosperity theology have grown widely across the spiritual landscape of the Spanish-speaking world.
Two longtime pastors were named alumni of the year Wednesday afternoon at Southern Seminary’s alumni luncheon held at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Nashville.
Seminary President Albert Mohler announced David Dykes and Josh Manley as co-alumni of the year.
Dykes holds both a master of divinity and a doctor of ministry from the seminary. He has served as senior pastor of Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, Texas, since 1991 and will retire on August 31.
Dykes also did post-doctoral studies at Cambridge University, focusing on biblical art from the Renaissance period. In 2017 he received an honorary doctorate from East Texas Baptist University.
Mohler: Religious Liberty Vital to Christianity June 17, 2021
NASHVILLE (BP) – A theology of conversion, such as Christianity, necessitates religious liberty because regeneration of the heart cannot be achieved by coercion, Albert Mohler said Tuesday (June 15) during “Baptists Thinking Biblically: A Conversation on Religious Liberty.”
The late-night event, hosted by Southern Baptist Theological Seminary at the Music City Center in Nashville, featured Mohler, Southern’s president, and Andrew Walker, associate professor of Christian ethics and apologetics and associate dean of the school of theology at Southern.
“In the history of Western civilization,” Mohler said, “religious liberty as we know it really came out of a culture committed to the understanding of human beings as imago Dei – made in the image of God – of a conversionist faith that, though obscured during the Middle Ages, still made a distinction between those who professed the faith and those who did not.”
Originally, religious liberty did not mean a freedom to reject belief in God “because that wasn’t even an intellectual option,” Mohler said. It meant a freedom “not to be coerced – especially after the Reformation – into a particular confession, be it Catholic or Protestant.”
Religious liberty sounds so strange to many now “because the default position is no longer theistic belief but the secular condition,” Mohler said.
The first annual Southern Seminary Apologetics Institute, a conference examining how Reformed apologetics looks in a secular age, took place May 10-11 at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Featured speakers included Albert Mohler, Timothy Paul Jones, and J. V. Fesko.
Jones, director of Southern’s Center for Christian Apologetics, was happy to see the conference happen after it was postponed from May 2020 due to the pandemic.
“This inaugural Apologetics Institute didn’t take place exactly when or how we expected,” he said. “It was originally scheduled in May 2020, but had to be postponed until 2021 due to the coronavirus. Even with the limitations, it was a delight to have a room full of students eager to engage deeply with theologically-grounded apologetics.”
The Institute focused on the question “What does apologetics look like for those whose theology has been shaped by the Reformation?”
Jonathan B. Austin has been appointed as the new senior vice president for institutional administration at Southern Seminary, President Albert Mohler announced Thursday afternoon.
Austin, who has served as Mohler’s executive assistant and chief of staff since 2017, will begin in the role on August 1. In this role, he is following Craig Parker, who recently announced his retirement after serving SBTS in that role and others for many years.
“Jon is a remarkable leader and one of the most capable managers with whom I’ve had the experience to work,” Mohler said.
“He has a remarkable background, including having served as a partner in a law firm. He reveals a deep love of Christ and great Christian character. He is also a graduate of Southern Seminary. I know the entire Southern Seminary family will take great satisfaction in Jon’s appointment.”
An Oklahoma native, Austin holds an undergraduate degree in business from Oklahoma State University and a law degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. He practiced law for nearly 15 years at a specialty firm in Oklahoma City and was a partner in the firm. His primary areas of practice were in business transactional work, commercial real estate, and non-profit law. Austin graduated from SBTS on May 7 with a master of arts in theological studies.
Austin is a gifted and experienced teacher who also serves as an assistant professor of law at Boyce College. Prior to his move to Louisville in 2016 to attend SBTS, Austin served as an adjunct professor at the University of Central Oklahoma and taught for the Oklahoma Bar Association. Jon and his wife, Erin, have four children. They are members of Ninth & O Baptist Church.
SBTS and Boyce College Send Out 593 Graduates May 8, 2021
Though a time may come when they are tempted to wonder how much good they’re doing in gospel ministry, everything faithful ministers do for Christ will impact both time and eternity, Southern Seminary President Albert Mohler told graduates Friday afternoon during the seminary’s spring commencement.
In the seminary’s 227th commencement, 241 students received degrees. There were 325 total graduates for spring semester, with 241 walking across the stage to receive their diplomas in Southern’s first in-person graduation since December of 2019. From the class of 2020, which was unable to hold a live commencement service due to the pandemic, 167 returned to walk with the class of 2021.
In total, Southern and Boyce College—the seminary’s undergraduate school—sent out 593 graduates, including those from 2020.
Spring Conference Highlights: D&T and Renown May 3, 2021
Two conferences during the spring semester helped usher in a gradual return to normal outreach at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
From April 22 thru 24, The Institute for Biblical Worship hosted the annual Doxology and Theology conference at Southern Seminary.
Noted artists and speakers considered the shared glory of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and their distinct workings within corporate worship.
The Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and Ministry at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary is now offering MDiv and MA degrees in three key areas that are fully online.
Paul Akin, dean of the Graham School, said SBTS wants to enable those already working in ministry to stay in their current position while pursuing a master of divinity.
“We want to make sure we are making theological education as accessible as possible to as many people as possible,” he said.