Academic camaraderie highlighted at annual Southeastern Theological Fellowship

During the 69th annual meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) in Providence, Rhode Island, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS) recognized four evangelical scholars for their contributions at the annual Southeastern Theological Fellowship dinner.

SEBTS Provost Bruce Ashford welcomed guests from liberal arts colleges, research universities, seminaries, publishing houses and more to the event, calling them as Christian scholars to be among the people who must speak and act responsibly in an increasingly secular age.Bruce Ashford at ETS

“Theological scholars are missionaries of a sort,” he said.

“In our mission to make disciples, the Lord will always be with us,” Ashford later said. “A truly evangelical scholar is one which engenders confidence in God, the gospel and the Christian mission.”

The honorees, representing four different colleges and seminaries, received awards for their excellence in research, writing and displaying the characteristics of a Great Commission scholar in both the classroom and Christian scholarship. The following scholars received awards:

•M. Daniel Carroll Rodas, Blanchard professor of Old Testament at Wheaton Graduate School, Wheaton, Illinois

•Heath Thomas, dean of the Hobbs College of Theology and Ministry and professor of Old Testament at Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, Oklahoma

•Eric Johnson, Lawrence and Charlotte Hoover professor of pastoral care at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky

•Scott Swain, president and James Woodrow Hassell professor of systematic theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando, Florida


ETS students talkingAfter accepting his award, Swain addressed attendees about the importance of cultivating a Godward mind.

“Knowledge of the only wise God can only be the object of our adoration and praise,” Swain said. “Wisdom begins and ends in wonder. Wisdom never exhausts the wonder of God’s being and ways.”

The Southeastern Theological Fellowship seeks to build camaraderie and foster fellowship between scholars of multiple denominations.

“In recognition of the value of Christian scholarship,” said Ashford. “We offer the Southeastern Theological Fellowship because we want to facilitate friendships across the evangelical scholarly community.”

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