Daniel Akin on the Identity of Southeastern
January 19, 2017
“What will our reputation be at Southeastern?” inquired Daniel Akin standing from the pulpit of Binkley Chapel.
Since his inauguration as president of Southeastern in 2004, Akin’s vision has been to wed the head, heart and hands of missional believers of the Gospel. These believers, whether they are pastors, lawyers, missionaries, educators, church, or church members, are prepared for a lifetime of faithful service to the Lord as they preach, teach, and lead in His Word.
“Southeastern,” said Akin, “yearns first and foremost to be a people who adore the Lord Jesus Christ, a truly Jesus intoxicated seminary. What you believe and think about Jesus will permeate the rest of your life and I pray that we stand without apology on the inerrant and infallible Word of God because Jesus believed Scripture to be God’s Holy Word.”
The mission statement at Southeastern is to seek to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ by equipping students to serve the Church and fulfill the Great Commission. “We try to instill a love for the Church that Jesus first had for it. Thus, Southeastern loves the local church and its brothers and sisters. It’s hard to love Jesus and not love his bride.”
Akin added, “I pray that Southeastern is also known for the Great Commission. We believe that theology is best done when its focus is the spreading of the Gospel everywhere.”
In 1951, Southeastern began its classes with 85 students and three faculty members.
Today, Southeastern is nearing a record enrollment of 3,000 students. Most of these students will take an expository preaching class, and with Southeastern being deeply devoted to gospel-focused expository preaching, these students will be taught a preaching method that “best divides the Word book-by-book, chapter-by-chapter, verse-by-verse, phrase-by-phrase, word-by-word, and finds the glorious portrait of Jesus in every book of the Bible,” said Akin.
Unique to the seminary is its four confessions of faith. The Abstract of Principles, the Baptist Faith and Message 2000, The Chicago Statement of Biblical Inerrancy, and The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. Akin commented, “I desire for Southeastern to be a seminary committed to a healthy, biblical and balanced theology; I believe this is witnessed well in our confessions of faith.”
Lastly, said Akin, “I believe Southeastern is a seminary that knows who the real enemy is and knows which hills to die on. The real enemies are hell, sin, the Devil, and death, and it is my prayer that we will not find ourselves in the barracks fighting fellow brothers and sisters but in the battlefield fighting these enemies until Jesus comes again. And remember we don’t fight for victory, we fight from victory – a victory proclaimed from an empty tomb.”