The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary has announced the appointment of noted preaching professor Abraham Kuruvilla as its newest faculty member.
Kuruvilla formerly served as senior research professor of preaching and pastoral ministry at Dallas Theological Seminary. He is also a practicing medical doctor who has specialized in dermatology.
Kuruvilla holds an MD, a PhD in immunology, and a PhD in hermeneutics and is the author of numerous books including A Manual for Preaching: The Journey from Text to Sermon (Baker, 2019) and several volumes on Genesis, Judges, Psalms (forthcoming), Mark, Ephesians, 1 and 2 Timothy/Titus (forthcoming) in a series of theological commentaries for preachers. His book, A Vision for Preaching: Understanding the Heart of Pastoral Ministry (Baker, 2015), was a 2016 Preaching Today book award recipient. He has also contributed widely to various medical journals over the past two decades.
“He brings a wealth of his own personal experience from his remarkable background in both theology and medicine,” SBTS President Albert Mohler said. “He is a stellar professor and we are extremely glad to make this announcement.”
Kuruvilla is ethnically Indian, but was born in Kuwait and has studied and ministered across the globe—earning degrees from the University of Kerala in India, Baylor College of Medicine, and most recently, the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. He has served in professorships in India, Singapore, Australia, and Sri Lanka. Kuruvilla served as president of the Evangelical Homiletics Society in 2010-2011 and was book review editor for the Journal of the Evangelical Homiletics Society from 2009-2019.
In addition to serving the academy, Kuruvilla has been intimately involved in local church ministry since the mid-1990s. He was ordained to the gospel ministry in 2005 at Plano Bible Chapel, in Plano, Texas, and has served in several interim preaching roles and as a teaching elder in two local churches.
Most fundamentally, he is a faithful expositor of God’s Word.
“Abraham Kuruvilla is one of the most important homileticians and professors of preaching in the world today, and the reason for that is quite simple: He is himself a gifted and committed preacher. He is a scholar of preaching,” Mohler said.
“He is a teacher of preachers. He is one who exults in preaching Christ and finds great joy in teaching others so that they may teach more powerfully and faithfully. He is thoroughly committed to biblical, expository preaching, and he has already shaped a generation of those who are preaching in pulpits all over the world today. Abraham Kuruvilla joins the most outstanding preaching department found in any institution of theological education. You cannot find a preaching faculty like this anywhere but at Southern Seminary.”
Kuruvilla is not new to SBTS. He has served as an adjunct professor at the seminary since 2020, so the move is natural for both the seminary and Kuruvilla. Students will benefit from his rigorous scholarship and passion to convey the importance of biblical preaching.
“Through his groundbreaking textbooks on preaching, insightful biblical commentaries, and engaging expositions of Scripture, Dr. Abraham Kuruvilla has become the preeminent homiletician among evangelicals.” said Hershael York, dean of Southern’s School of Theology.
“His deep commitment to the church and his proven track record in the academy makes him a perfect fit for Southern Seminary. Not only is he one of the most disciplined and productive scholars I have ever known, but his classroom is ablaze with his passion for preaching the Word. I could not be more thrilled for the students of Southern Seminary who will be privileged to sit under his teaching.”
Kuruvilla is thrilled to serve both SBTS and the Southern Baptist Convention.
“I am excited to become part of the community at Southern Seminary, a premier school for the training of tomorrow’s church leaders, and to getting involved in the activities of the Southern Baptist Convention,” Kuruvilla said.
“It will be a privilege to join Southern’s team of exemplary faculty members in the training of preachers of Scripture for the exaltation of God’s name, the extension of his Son’s kingdom, and the edification of his people!”
Provost Matthew Hall said Kuruvilla is a joyful and devoted follower of Christ in addition to being a profoundly gifted scholar.
"I am absolutely delighted by the addition of Dr. Abraham Kuruvilla to the faculty,” Hall said.
“Dr. Kuruvilla is among the most respected and prolific scholars in evangelical homiletics, widely known for his prolific writings and preaching ministry. In this process, I have also come to know and appreciate his devotion to Christ and his contagious joy in the Word of God. For those called to preach, I can think of no better place to prepare than Southern Seminary at this particular moment in time.”
Mohler believes the hire of Kuruvilla is helping Southern fulfill its historic mission of equipping biblical preachers.
“Southern Seminary has been on the front lines of teaching faithful preaching since our founding in 1859,” he said. “Our commitment in the present is even more critical than our commitment in the beginning. The great need of the hour is for God’s people to be fed by Scripture, and the vehicle for that feeding is expository preaching. This is good news for the church, good news for Southern Seminary, good news for the Southern Baptist Convention, and extremely good news for our students.”
In their spring meeting Monday afternoon, trustees of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary unanimously approved a $48.1 million operating budget for 2021-2022 and celebrated God’s mercy in enabling the school to flourish despite the challenges of the past year.
The new budget represents a $10.9 million increase from the budget trustees approved for the 2020-21 fiscal year. During the 2020-21 school year, the seminary has witnessed record levels of giving, a record number of donors, and record enrollment.
“When you look at Southern Seminary and Boyce College and understand where we are, it’s by God’s grace,” President Albert Mohler said.
Students Brave Rain to Serve Louisville through 1937 Project April 19, 2021
On April 10, a rainy Saturday, 106 students served the city of Louisville through the Bevin Center’s 1937 project. Each year, SBTS and Boyce volunteers spread out across Jefferson County and work in the community. Along with parks and churches, Coleridge-Taylor Elementary was among the worksites this year.
"Several of my roommates and I were able to participate in this year’s 1937 Project.” said Tommy Nissen, SBTS MDiv Student, “our site was Coleridge-Taylor Elementary. We put up fencing, repaired garden boxes, cleaned out chicken coops, mulched, weeded, raked leaves, and prepped the grounds for the rest of the semester and the summer.”
Written to Christians or Almost Christians? Mohler and Schreiner Debate Warning Passages at TGC21 April 16, 2021
Does Albert Mohler’s view of the warning passages in Hebrews need to be straightened out?
The SBTS president good-naturedly teased Schreiner on Twitter that Tuesday’s late-night event at The Gospel Coalition’s 2021 National Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana, amounted to precisely that. Schreiner, longtime New Testament professor at SBTS, and Southern Seminary’s president discussed the warning passages in Hebrews before a sold-out crowd of more than 250. The theme of TGC21 was the book of Hebrews.
Entire MDiv Core Open to Students for Three Summer Terms April 9, 2021
If you are an MDiv student who needs to fill in some gaps toward your degree, SBTS will have three summer terms with all core classes available that will allow you to do just that.
SBTS will be expanding its summer offers to include the entire core of the MDiv along with many electives. These courses will be offered online over three eight-week terms beginning May 10, May 31, and June 7. The on-campus requirement for students who live within a 50-mile radius of SBTS will be waived for these summer terms only.
Ministry students wanting to study theology and business now have an excellent opportunity through a brand-new credit transfer program between The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Union University.
Southern Seminary’s master of divinity program will accept up to 12 hours from Union’s master of business administration program. In turn, Union’s master of business program will accept up to six hours from Southern’s MDiv program. Tuition rates will be according to each institution’s published rates, and students must still meet all graduation policies and hour requirements at each institution.
SBTS Graduates 236 in Fall Commencement December 18, 2020
The new graduates of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary have the same task as that of the shepherds who appear in the story of Jesus’s birth: to proclaim that the Savior of the world has come, seminary president Albert Mohler told fall 2020 graduates.
In Southern’s 226th commencement, 236 students received degrees from the seminary—even more than the 208 who graduated in the fall of 2019. The degrees awarded ranged from an array of masters degrees to doctoral degrees including the Doctor of Philosophy.
In words addressed personally to the graduates, Mohler pointed them to Luke 2:15-20, which is he described as the first preaching of the gospel -- a fact that’s often overlooked, but one that well illustrates the God-called steward’s most fundamental mission. In a video message to graduates, Mohler charged them to endure in that mission faithfully, sacrificially, and joyfully.
Two Southern Exchange Volunteers Working to Put Good (Free) Books in Student Hands December 10, 2020
If there’s one attribute that seems to be universal among SBTS students it is a love for reading and a passion for good books.
For those in ministry, it’s doubly important to be given to reading, for God has revealed himself in a book and studying it is fundamental to the minister’s calling.
Two longtime volunteers have been working tirelessly behind the scenes these past few months to put more good books into the hands of seminary students free of charge through The Southern Exchange. The Southern Exchange serves students and student families through the distribution of free used clothing, shoes, household goods, furniture, and good books.
Seminary Adds Three Professors to Faculty November 30, 2020
President R. Albert Mohler Jr. has appointed three new professors to the faculty of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Scott Connell was appointed as professor of church music and worship. He also serves as pastor of worship and communications at historic First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, Florida. Connell is a face familiar to the SBTS family, having obtained a PhD in Christian worship here and serving as associate professor of music and worship leadership for eight years at Southern.
Mohler Elected President of ETS November 20, 2020
Southern Seminary President Albert Mohler was elected president of the Evangelical Theological Society Thursday during the organization’s 72nd annual meeting. Due to the pandemic, the meeting of evangelical scholars met virtually this week. The meeting was originally scheduled to meet in Providence, Rhode Island.
Previously, Mohler had served as vice president of ETS, having been elected to that office during the 2018 annual meeting in Denver, Colorado.
“I am deeply honored to serve as president of the Evangelical Theological Society," Mohler said. “As a young evangelical, I came to respect and admire this society for its identity as a society of evangelical theologians that would demonstrate the highest quality of theological and biblical scholarship."