Akin celebrates Great Commission efforts at Southeastern

Danny Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, began his presentation to the Southern Baptist Convention quoting 18th-century missionary Henry Martyn who said, “The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions. The nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we become.”

Akin highlighted the Great Commission as the heartbeat of Southeastern throughout his June 14 report as he spoke of numerous initiatives that the seminary has begun throughout the world.

“We are to serve the churches of the SBC by training and equipping disciple-makers who will make disciples among the nations here in America and around the world,” Akin said.

Southeastern is making disciples through its Global Theological Initiatives, he said, by providing theological training on five continents throughout the world. These efforts to provide seminary training include the Persian Leadership Program, Hispanic Leadership Development Initiative, starting a new Vietnamese Baptist seminary and providing strategic theological training in Sub-Saharan East Africa.

Another way Southeastern is making disciples within the state of North Carolina is through its North Carolina Field Minister Program, which seeks to disciple long-term prisoners through theological education through The College at Southeastern. Akin noted that this will be provided in Fall 2017 in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Public Safety and Joe Gibbs as well as Game Plan for Life.

Chuck Lawless’ new role as vice president of spiritual formation was described as an effort by Southeastern to more effectively emphasize the spiritual formation and prayer of its students.

“We’re known as a Great Commission seminary but we also want to be known as a praying seminary as well,” Akin said.

Southeastern’s Kingdom Diversity Initiative has helped the seminary expand its minority enrollment, moving from 8.3 percent in 2011 to 18.1 percent in 2017.

In relation to the vote on amendment 10 to oppose the alt-right movement, which messengers passed overwhelmingly Wednesday afternoon, Akin said emphatically of Southeastern, “We will be there and we will vote.”

Akin noted some of Southeastern’s key academic programs, including expository preaching on the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels as well as a master’s degree in Christian marital and family counseling and a Ph.D. in biblical counseling.

Akin concluded by thanking the messengers for their support of Southeastern.

“We could not do what we do without the love and support of Southern Baptists,” he said.

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