Southeastern Seminary hosts Board of Visitors and Trustees and syndicated columnist, Cal Thomas
January 19, 2017
Twice a year from Sunday evening to Tuesday afternoon, the Southeastern Board of Visitors and Trustees meet to discuss important matters concerning the health and future of the College at Southeastern and Southeastern Seminary. This fall’s meeting, the Visitors and Trustees confirmed God’s faithfulness and benevolence towards the school.
President of Southeastern Seminary, Daniel Akin said in his Presidential Address that the Lord has grown Southeastern from roughly over 2,850 students in 2011 to a record enrollment of nearly 3,000 this semester. Akin said that the Lord has been faithful to Southeastern and in turn we should seek to remain faithful to him.
During the business session, the Board of Trustees formally elected three current professors to new positions and one new professor to the administration and faculty at Southeastern.
Associate Professor of History of Ideas and Philosophy, Dr. James Dew, Jr. will become the new Dean of the College. Dew received his B.S. from Toccoa Falls College, his M.Div. and Ph.D. from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and is currently pursuing another Ph.D. from the University of Birmingham.
Dr. Kenneth Keathley, Professor of Theology and Dean of the Faculty, transitioned from his administrative position as Senior Vice President for Academic Administration to lead the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture.
The Trustees also elected Dr. Bruce Ashford, Associate Professor of Theology and Culture, former Dean of the College at Southeastern, and Fellow for the Bush Center for Faith and Culture, to the position of Provost – a title formerly known as the Senior Vice President for Academic Administration. Ashford received his B.A. from Campbell University, and his M.Div. and Ph.D. from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Dr. Chuck Lawless, former dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY, and current Vice-President with the International Mission Board, will join the faculty as Professor of Evangelism and Missions and the new Dean of the Graduate School.
Monday night, Southeastern hosted Cal Thomas, a nationally syndicated columnist and panelist on the popular “Fox News Watch” show, for a Board of Visitor’s banquet dinner. Thomas has worked for NBC News in Washington, DC and hosted his own program on CNBC that was nominated for a Cable ACE Award in 1995.
Thomas asked the question to the banquet attendees, “What makes America unique in relationship to other nations and countries? American government says that rights and freedom are God-given and ideally, the government’s role is to protect these two things for the nation’s well-being.”
Thomas noted that even though the American political system may seem grim, the God of the universe has everything in complete control, even politics. Thomas said American politics should be seen as a means and not an end itself. He confessed, “My hope is not in the next election, but in the blood and death of Jesus Christ.” True change said Thomas would not come through a legislation of morality via the government. “True transformation is through God’s way and that is his gospel.”
On Tuesday, Daniel Akin addressed the chapel with a message concerning the identity of Southeastern. The sermon was entitled, “What Will Our Reputation Be?”
Akin noted that there exists many perspectives about Southeastern, yet most of them are misinformed and in need of clarification. Thus, he said, “I pray that Southeastern walks in truth and not in error, that we strive to care for others more than ourselves, and to cultivate humility and not pride. We truly try to excel at imitating what is good as well as building up others and not tearing them down.”
Akin said Southeastern should be the school known for its adoration of Jesus, its unapologetic stance on the inerrant and infallible Word of God. “I hope individuals know us as the passionate Great Commission seminary who are devoted to expository preaching, who love the Church, and are committed to a healthy, biblical and balanced theology. These attributes will continue to be our reputation at Southeastern.”