Southern Baptist



Southern Baptist in the news

New Baptist Voice Fails to Convince Some Southern Baptists 

The Christian Post - Jan 13 6:22 AM
Baptist leaders claiming to represent 20 million Baptists in North America are hailing a new push spurred by former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton to create a new Baptist voice. But not many Southern Baptists want to hop on ...
Carter, Clinton announce Baptist meeting as counter to conservative Southern Baptists - Jan 11 3:02 PM
ATLANTA — With the help of former President Carter, Baptists who have distanced themselves from the conservative Southern Baptist Convention announced plans Tuesday for a major meeting that aims to improve the Baptist image and broaden its agenda.

Southern Baptists here skeptical of Clinton-Carter plan 
The Flint Journal - Jan 13 6:05 AM
As Baptists frustrated with the Southern Baptist Convention, former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton announced a new Baptist organization this week aiming to improve the denomination's image and broaden its agenda.

Former Presidents Provide Alternative To Conservative Southern Baptist Convention 
WKRN Nashville - Jan 10 4:37 AM
Plans are in the works for a major meeting for Baptists distancing themselves from conservatives in the Southern Baptist Convention. Former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton joined the leaders of about 40 Baptist groups to make the announcement at the Carter Center in Atlanta. | The meeting, scheduled for next year, is aimed at improving the public image of...

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Southern Baptists

General Baptists
Particular Baptists

Baptist theology
London Confession, 1689
New Hampshire Confession, Southren Baptist 1833
Baptist Faith Sothern Baptist & Message

Doctrinal distinctives
Biblical inerrancy
Autonomy of the local church
Priesthood of believers
Two ordinances
Individual soul liberty
Separation of church and state
Two offices

John Smyth
John Spilsbury
Lottie Moon
W.A. Criswell
Billy Graham
Adrian Rogers
Paige Patterson
Albert Mohler
Rick Warren

Related organizations
Cooperative Program
North American Mission Board
International Mission Board
LifeWay Christian Resources
Women's Missionary Union
Ethics & Religious
Liberty Commission
Baptist Press

Golden Gate
New Orleans

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The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) is a United States-based cooperative ministry agency serving Baptist churches around the world.

The words Southern Baptist Convention refer both to the denomination and its annual meeting of messengers (the national level term, as well as in the lower State conventions and local associations, for delegates).

The SBC is the largest Baptist group in the world and the largest Protestant denomination in the United States, claiming more than 16.3 million members, and is the second largest religious group in the United States.


  • 1 History
    • 1.1 Early origins
    • 1.2 Birth pains
    • 1.3 Historical controversies
    • 1.4 Conservative ascendancy
      • 1.4.1 Moderate withdrawal
      • 1.4.2 State conventions react
    • 1.5 The Convention Today
  • 2 Statistics
  • 3 Beliefs and practice
    • 3.1 Theology
    • 3.2 Practice
    • 3.3 Women's role
  • 4 Organization
    • 4.1 Local congregation
    • 4.2 Local association
    • 4.3 State convention
    • 4.4 National convention
    • 4.5 Leadership
  • 5 Affiliated organizations
    • 5.1 Missions agencies
    • 5.2 National educational institutions
    • 5.3 State educational institutions
    • 5.4 Other organizations
  • 6 Prominent Southern Baptists
  • 7 References
    • 7.1 Primary sources
    • 7.2 Secondary sources
  • 8 External links


Early origins

Baptists arrived in the southern United States near the end of the 17th century. The first Baptist church in the south was formed in Charleston, South Carolina under the leadership of William Screven, a Baptist preacher and shipbuilder who arrived there from Maine in 1696.

But the zealous evangelism of the Separate Baptists was the chief instrument of spreading the Baptist denomination throughout the southern U. S. The first associations formed in the South were the Charleston Association (org. 1751) and the Sandy Creek Association (org. 1758).

Baptists in the South participated in forming the first national Baptist organization in 1814 - the General Missionary Convention of the Baptist Denomination in the United States of America for Foreign Missions (better known as the Baptist Board of Foreign Missions or the Triennial Convention; it met every three years).

Birth pains

Though the Triennial Convention and Home Mission Society were theoretically neutral in regards to slavery, some Baptists in the South did not believe this assurance of neutrality. They knew several leaders who were engaged in abolitionist activity. To test this neutrality, Georgia Baptists recommended James E. Reeve, a slaveholder, to the Home Mission Society as a missionary in the South. The Society did not appoint Reeve, presumably not on the basis of his being a slaveholder, but because the Georgia Baptists wished his appointment specifically because he was a slaveholder.

Another issue that disturbed the churches in the south was the perception that the American Baptist Home Mission Society (org. 1832) did not appoint a proportionate number of missionaries to the southern region of the U. S.

It is also evident that Baptists north and south preferred a different type of denominational organization: the Baptists in the north as a whole preferred a loosely structured society composed of individuals who paid annual dues, with each society usually focused on a single ministry, while the southern churches preferred an organization composed of churches patterned after their associations, with a variety of ministries brought under the direction of one denominational organization.

Baptists from the South subsequently broke from the national organizations and formed a new convention, the Southern Baptist Convention which was formed May 8-12, 1845 in Augusta, Georgia. Its first president was William Bullein Johnson (1782-1862), who was president of the Triennial Convention in 1841.

The consequences of this decision hav been long lived. A survey by the Home Mission Board in 1968 showed that only eleven percent of Southern Baptist churches would admit Americans of African descent (The American Baptist Convention and the Civil Rights Movement: Rhetoric and Response, Dana Martin, 1999, page 44). The Southern Baptist Convention of 1995 voted June 20 to adopt a resolution renouncing its racist roots and apologizing for its past defense of slavery. The racism resolution marked the denomination's first formal acknowledgment that racism played a role in its founding.

Historical controversies

During its history, the Convention has not been without controversy. The denomination's polity lends itself toward very public displays of disagreement, including:

  • Landmarkism, which led to the formation of Gospel Missions and the forming of the American Baptist Association
  • the "Whitsitt controversy" (1896-1899)
  • the fundamentalist/modernist controversy of the 1970s and 1980s, by far its most notable disagreement, which led to the formation of independent Baptist groups such as the World Baptist Fellowship, the Alliance of Baptists and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

Conservative ascendancy

By the late 1970s, two clear factions had emerged in the convention. "Moderates" argued for a more modernistic interpretation of the Bible and were open to adopting changes that reflected those taking place in society as a whole. Amongst other things, moderates took more liberal positions on issues such as biblical inerrancy, temperance, homosexuality, abortion, and the ordination of women.

More conservative members opposed these trends, pointing toward their belief that the Bible specifically precluded the changes that the Moderates advocated. However, many of these strict conservative policies that contradict popular opinion on issues such as abortion and homosexuality have led to hostility directed towards the Southern Baptist Convention from other Christian oganizations.

W.A. Criswell, Paige Patterson, Paul Pressler, and Adrian Rogers were chief among the key leaders of what largely was a grassroots movement among Southern Baptists to nominate conservatives to key positions.

Under the SBC bylaws, the President has sole authority to nominate the Committee on Committees. This committee, in turn, nominates the members of the Committee on Nominations to be approved by the messengers at the next annual meeting, which in turn nominates appointees for vacant positions (the SBC cannot remove anyone from an appointed position, only if the position is term-limited or the appointee dies, retires, or resigns does it become vacant) to be approved at the subsequent annual meeting (i.e., two years from the initial Committee on Committees appointments). The process overlaps (a new Committee on Committees is appointed every year); though lengthy, over time key appointments can (and did, in this case) shift the direction of the SBC.

The conservatives succeeded in having conservative supporters elected as SBC President, beginning with the election of Adrian Rogers in 1979. Throughout the 1980s, working within the existing framework and the strategy outlined above, conservatives gained control over the SBC leadership at every level from the administration to key faculty at their seminaries, and slowly turned the SBC's drift into modernistic philosophies toward more conservative ones (for example, on abortion, the SBC reversed course from a moderate "reluctant support" of pro-choice stance to a strong conservative pro-life stance, which it continues to hold today).

Moderate withdrawal

As the conservative movement grew, some of the more liberal congregations split away in 1987 to form the Alliance of Baptists and again in 1990 to form the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF), organized as a "convention within the convention" to support causes not controlled by the conservative majority. The change in control, termed the "Conservative Resurgence" by supporters and the "Fundamentalist Takeover" by detractors, culminated in the adoption of significant changes to the Baptist Faith and Message at the 2000 SBC Annual Meeting.

State conventions react

Because each level of Baptist life is autonomous, changes at the national level do not require approval or endorsement by the state conventions or local associations. The majority of state conventions have continued to cooperate with the SBC. However, the state conventions in Texas and Virginia have openly challenged the new directions announcing a "dual affiliation" with contributions to both the SBC's Cooperative Program and the CBF. These actions resulted in the formation of a conservative, SBC-affiliated state convention in each of these states.

The Baptist General Convention of Texas (BGCT), the largest of the Southern Baptist state conventions, voted in 1998 to also align itself with the CBF, stating as its reasons for doing so were its objections to proposed changes in the 2000 revision of the Baptist Faith and Message, which it stated made the document sound like a "creed", in violation of historic Baptist tradition which opposed the use of creeds. In a reversal from the national convention (where the moderates left and the conservatives stayed), many Texas conservatives formed their own state convention, the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. Local congregations either disassociated completely from BGCT or sought "dual alignment" with both groups. Yet, other congregations solely align themselves with the BGCT. The BGCT remains the larger of the two state conventions and universities such as Baylor only receive money from the BGCT. Similarly, conservative Baptists in Virginia formed the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia.

In Missouri, the exact opposite took place. The Missouri Baptist Convention (the existing state body) came under the control of the conservative group, which subsequently attempted to take over the boards of the state's moderate agencies and institutions and reshape them along the theological lines of the current SBC. In 2002, a small number of congregations withdrew and affiliated with a new convention (called Baptist General Convention of Missouri); the old state agencies are attempting to affiliate with the newly formed state convention, but are currently being taken to court by the old convention.

The Convention Today

President George W. Bush meets with the leadership of the Southern Baptist Convention in the Oval Office at the White House. Pictured with the President are Dr. Morris Chapman, left, Dr. Frank Page and his wife Dayle Page.

Today, the SBC has grown from its regional, sectionalist roots to a major force in American and international Christianity. There are Southern Baptist congregations in every state and territory in the United States, though the greatest numbers remain in the southern United States, the traditional stronghold.

In the past, Southern Baptist churches exerted even more influence than they do today. In many Southern states, today, there is little or no legalized gambling, and Southern Baptist churches are active against movements to allow it.

Other Southern States and their counties (or portions thereof) prohibit alcohol sales, due in part to the influence of Southern Baptists, their churches, and other Evangelical Christians with whom they ally.

The national scope of the Convention inspired some, in 2005 proposals were made at the Annual Meeting of the Convention, to change the name from the regional-sounding "Southern Baptist Convention" to a more national-sounding "North American Baptist Convention" or "Scriptural Baptist Convention" (to retain the SBC intials). The proposals, however, were defeated.


According to the Religious Congregations Membership Study, the Convention had 15,922,039 members in 41,514 churches in the United States in 2000.

It has 1,200 local associations, 41 state conventions and fellowships covering all 50 states and territories of the United States. Through their Cooperative Program, Southern Baptists support thousands of missionaries in the United States and worldwide (over 10,000 in 2005).

There are more Southern Baptist congregations in America than of any other religious group, including the Roman Catholic Church (although in terms of members there are three times more Catholics in the United States than Southern Baptists).

Data from church sources and independent surveys indicate that since 1990, membership of SBC churches is declining as a proportion of the American population. [1] Historically, though, Convention has grown throughout its history:

Year Membership
1845 350,000
1860 650,000
1875 1,260,000
1890 1,240,000
1905 1,900,000
1920 3,150,000
1935 4,480,000
1950 7,080,000
1965 10,780,000
1980 13,700,000
1995 15,400,000
2000 15,900,000
2005 16,300,000

Source: Historical Statistics of the U.S. (1976) series H805 (with 2005 estimate from Convention figures).

Beliefs and practice


The general theological perspective of the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention is represented in the Baptist Faith and Message (BF&M). The BF&M was first drafted in 1925, then revised significantly in 1963 and again in 2000, with the latter revision being the subject of much controversy.

The BF&M is not considered to be a creed along the lines of historic Christian creeds such as the Nicene Creed; members are not required to adhere to it nor are churches required to use it as their "Statement of Faith" or "Statement of Doctrine" (though many do in lieu of creating their own Statement). Despite the fact that the BF&M is not a "creed," missionaries who apply to serve through the various SBC missionary agencies must "affirm" that their practices, doctrine, and preaching are consistent with the BF&M; this affirmation has also been the subject of controversy.

One of the most significant changes made in the 2000 version of the BF&M was the removal of the statement "the criterion by which scripture is interpreted is Jesus Christ." This statement was a relatively modern addition to the BF&M, having been part of the section explaining the Baptist understanding of the Bible only since 1963. The moderates interpret the deletion of this "criterion" as placing the Bible above the teachings, practices, methodology, and example of Jesus, thus elevating the scripture above the Godhead. The conservatives, on the other hand, viewed the statement as a mechanism for subjecting the Bible's teachings about Jesus to subjective feelings and private opinions about Him.


Most Southern Baptists observe a low church form of worship that uses little or no liturgy. Worship services usually consist of hymns, prayer, the reading of Scripture, the collection of offerings, a sermon, and an invitation to accept Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior and begin Christian discipleship. The service can be seen as an extended version of the liturgical churches' Service of the Word, the portion of the liturgy before the Service of the Table.

Southern Baptists, as the BF&M outlines, observe the Lord's Supper and Believer's baptism.

In an attempt to uphold the "solemnity" of the Lord's Supper, Baptists will observe the ritual much less often than their liturgical brothers and sisters (sometimes monthly, sometimes quarterly). There is usually no common cup, and grape juice is usually substituted for wine.

Southern Baptists maintain the historic Baptist practice of administering baptism only to persons who have reached the "age of accountability" or "age of reason" and who have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Likewise, Southern Baptists hold to the historic Baptist teaching that immersion is the only valid act of Baptism. Most recently (in 2006) there has been a strong movement toward the idea (most commonly associated with Landmarkism) that the validity of baptism also depends on the doctrinal character of the administering church.

Women's role

During the June 1998 convention the Baptist Faith and Message was amended for the first time since 1963. The changes were made to the position of women in relationships. The altered 18th Article states:

  • God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to one another by marriage, blood, or adoption.
  • Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God’s unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and his church, and to provide for the man and the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel for sexual expression according to biblical standards, and the means for procreation of the human race.
  • The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God’s image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to his people. A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.
  • Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Parents are to demonstrate to their children God’s pattern for marriage. Parents are to teach their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical truth. Children are to honor and obey their parents.

The 141st annual Southern Baptist Convention held in Salt Lake City, Utah was attended by at least 8,000 delegates. Delegates rejected two amendments that called on husbands and wives to submit to each other.

On June 14, 2000, the Southern Baptist Convention voted to approve the BF&M 2000, which expressed the consensus belief that the role of pastor according to Scripture is reserved for men and ordination of women should not be allowed. However, this statement of faith only represents the majority view among Southern Baptists and individual congregations may hire women as pastors if they want. A study showed that among SBC churches fewer than 0.1% (35 of the 40,000 congregations) had a female pastor.


Because Baptist churches believe strongly in the autonomy of the local church, the Convention is conceived as a cooperative organization by which churches can pool resources, rather than as a body with any administrative control over local churches.

It maintains a central administrative organization in Nashville, Tennessee. The Executive Committee, as it is called, has no authority over its affiliated state conventions, local associations, individual churches or members.

The Convention's "confession of faith", the Baptist Faith and Message (2000 edition), is also not binding on churches or members (see "Beliefs" above).

There are four levels of SBC organization: the local congregation, the local association, the state convention, and the national convention.

Local congregation

The "lowest" level is the individual congregation (though, because the SBC operates on a form of congregationalist church governance, the individual congregation may be considered the "highest" level).

Each congregation is independent and autonomous, except for certain "mission churches". Thus, it is free to:

  • associate with or disassociate from the SBC (and/or any of its affiliates) at any time
  • determine the level of support which it provides to SBC-affiliated programs and/or other groups (though in order to affiliate with a local association or a state or the national convention, some minimum level of giving is required)
  • conduct its own internal affairs (such as hiring and firing, determining its doctrinal statement and membership qualifications, order and format of services, and other matters) without "direction" from a higher level entity

Certain smaller congregations, called "mission churches", are operated by a larger parent church. One or more parent churches may sponsor the mission church, along with assistance from a local association. The goal is for the mission church to become self-supporting, and thus become an independent and autonomous church. A mission church is typically either a church in a new real estate development, or a church which may be devoted to reaching a certain ethnic group.

Local association

Individual congregations may then choose to affiliate into associations, which are generally organized within certain defined geographic areas within a state (such as a county). The prior general rule was that only one association existed in a specific geographical area, did not cross state lines (unless a state convention consisted of multiple states), and did not accept churches from outside that area.

However, with the division between Southern Baptists and churches in the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, a SBC splinter group, there may be two or more associations serving an area, and some churches have aligned with out-of-state associations, though the general rule applies in most cases.

The primary goal of associations is evangelism and church planting (i.e., assisting churches in starting "mission churches"), though some local ministries may be supported by the association (such as a food pantry or crisis pregnancy center).

Associations cannot direct the affairs of associated churches, but can set requirements for association, and can "disfellowship" any church with which it disagrees, generally in areas of contentious practice (such as a local church promoting charismatic doctrine – a major issue in the 1970s – or, more common today among conservative associations, a local church promoting ordination of women or support for homosexuality).

Association meetings are generally held annually. The association is free to set the time and place, as well as determining the number of messengers each church may send (each church is allowed a minimum number; the general practice – at the association level and at the higher levels as well – is that larger and more financially supportive churches are allowed more messengers).

State convention

Individual congregations and associations may further choose to affiliate into state conventions.

With the exception of Texas and Virginia, which have two conventions, each state has only one convention (some smaller states, in terms of number of SBC congregations, are affiliated into a larger multi-state convention).

As with associations, the primary goal is evangelism and church planting; however, the state conventions also support educational institutions (often institutions of higher education) and may support retirement and children's homes.

As with associations, the state convention cannot direct individual church affairs but can set requirements for affiliation and "disfellowship" churches at its discretion. And, the state convention generally meets annually, sets the time and place, and determines the number of messengers allowed per church.

National convention

The "highest" level of organization is the national convention (usually called the Convention) made up of individual churches, associations, and state conventions, which meets annually in early June.

Article III of the Convention's Constitution states that each church

  • "in friendly cooperation with the Convention and sympathetic with its purposes and work"
  • that does not support homosexual acts as Godly behavior
  • which is a bona fide financial supporter of the Convention (through the Cooperative Program during the prior year) is entitled to send one messenger to the Convention, plus one additional messenger for each additional 250 members or $250 in support. No church, however, can send more than 10 messengers. The messengers must be members of the church they represent.

The Convention is led by a President, who is elected for a one-year term and cannot be elected for more than two consecutive terms (but can serve for more than two terms if not consecutive; only Adrian Rogers has ever done so).


Although the SBC President serves for only one year, and cannot serve for more than two consecutive years, he (the President has always been a male, and, given the SBC's stated position on women in leadership positions within the church, probably will continue to be for some time) has the potential to exercise significant influence over the direction of the SBC.

Affiliated organizations

Missions agencies

The Southern Baptist Convention was organized in 1845 primarily for the purpose of creating a mission board to support the sending of Baptist missionaries. The North American Mission Board, or NAMB, (originally founded as the Domestic Mission Board, and later the Home Mission Board) in Alpharetta, Georgia serves missionaries involved in evangelism and church planting in the U.S. and Canada, while the International Mission Board, or IMB, (originally the Foreign Mission Board) in Richmond, Virginia sponsors missionaries to the rest of the world.

National educational institutions

The national Convention supports six educational institutions devoted to religious instruction and ministry preparation:

  • Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, Mill Valley, California [2]
  • Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Kansas City, Missouri [3]
  • New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, Louisiana [4]
  • Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, North Carolina [5]
  • Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky (founded in 1859 in Greenville, South Carolina, and the oldest of the six institutions) [6]
  • Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas [7]

(Another institution, Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in Memphis, TN, is staffed by Southern Baptists and operates in accord with SBC beliefs but is not officially part of the SBC seminary system.)

State educational institutions

The Education Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention used to deal with all matters concerning education. But since its recent dissolution all Baptist educational institutions are handled by their respective states.

  • Category:Universities and colleges affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, [8]

There are 52 state conventions supported higher educational institutions in their states such as

  • Baylor University, Waco, Texas [9] (however, Baylor is partially aligned with the BGCT, which is in turn dually aligned with the SBC AND the CBF, although the majority of the Board of Regents hold memberships at SBC churches)
  • Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee [10]
  • Carson-Newman College, Jefferson City, Tennessee [11]
  • Mississippi College, Clinton, Mississippi [12]
  • Ouachita Baptist University, Arkadelphia, Arkansas [13]
  • Samford University, Birmingham, Alabama [14]
  • Union University, Jackson, Tennessee [15]
  • Anderson University, Anderson, South Carolina[16]
  • The Baptist College of Florida, Graceville, Florida[17]
  • Southwest Baptist University, Bolivar, Missouri [18]

State conventions also support many prominent boarding Academies such as

  • Hargrave Military Academy, Chatham, Virginia [19]
  • Fork Union Military Academy, Fork Union, Virginia [20]
  • San Marcos Baptist Academy, San Marcos, Texas [21]
  • Hawaii Baptist Academy, Honolulu, Hawaii[22]

Other organizations

  • LifeWay Christian Resources, founded as the Baptist Sunday School Board in 1891, which is one of the largest Christian publishing houses in America and operates the "LifeWay Christian Store" chain of bookstores.
  • Baptist Press [23], the largest Christian news service in the country, was established by the SBC in 1946.
  • Guidestone Financial Resources [24] (founded in 1920 as the Annuity Board of the Southern Baptist Convention) exists to provide insurance, retirement, and investment services to ministers and employees of Southern Baptist churches and agencies. It underwent a severe financial crisis in the 1930s.
  • Woman's Missionary Union, founded in 1888, is an auxiliary to the Southern Baptist Convention, and helps facilitate two large annual missions offerings: the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.
  • Tennessee Baptist Children's Home Founded in 1891 near Nashville Tennessee. There are now FIVE campuses spread across Tennessee. These homes have served the needs of thousands of children for over 100 years at no cost to taxpayers. These homes are 100% supported by Southern Baptist churches.

Prominent Southern Baptists

  • Billy Graham
  • Charles Stanley, the pastor of the nearly 16,000-member First Baptist Church of Atlanta
  • Jerry Falwell, the pastor of the 24,000-member Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia (Falwell was previously an independent Baptist and a long-time critic of the SBC; however, with the conservatives taking control of the SBC, Falwell led his congregation to affiliate with the SBC)
  • Adrian Rogers, the former pastor of the 28,000 member Bellevue Baptist Church in Cordova, Tennessee, who died in November 2005
    • Steve Gaines, who took over for Rogers at Bellevue Baptist
  • Rick Warren, pastor of the 20,000-member Saddleback Church in California and author of The Purpose Driven Life
  • Buddy Gray, pastor of Hunter Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama
  • Larry Wynn, pastor of Hebron Baptist Church in Dacula, Georgia; former VP of the SBC as well as President of the Georgia Baptist Convention
  • Paul Powell, Dean of George W. Truett Theological Seminary
  • Ed Young, the pastor of the 31,000 member Second Baptist Church in Houston, Texas, and his sons (Ed--pastor of the 20,000 member Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas, Ben--singles pastor at Second Baptist, and Cliff--lead singer of Caedmon's Call)
  • Jerry Vines, former pastor of the First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, Florida
  • Mac Brunson, new pastor at First Baptist Jacksonville, formerly pastor at First Baptist Church of Dallas, Texas
  • Jack Graham, pastor of the 25,000 member Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, Texas.
  • Chuck Norris, attends Jack Graham's church
  • Roy Blunt, House GOP Whip
  • R. Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Richard Land, president of the SBC's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission since 1988
  • Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Dakota Fanning, child actress
  • Bill Clinton, former President of the United States
  • Dr. Daniel Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Clay Aiken, singer, producer, UNICEF Ambassador, and humanitarian
  • Jimmy Carter, former President of the United States (Carter later left the SBC for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship due to his differences with the direction of the SBC leadership)
  • Pat Robertson (he later became involved in the charismatic movement and no longer considers himself Southern Baptist, even going so far as to surrender his original ordination certificate from a SBC church)


Primary sources

  • Baker, Robert. ed. A Baptist Source Book. Nashville, Tenn.: Broadman Press, 1966.
  • Religious Congregations & Membership in the United States, 2000. Glenmary Research Center

Secondary sources

  • Encyclopedia of Southern Baptists: Presenting Their History, Doctrine, Polity, Life, Leadership, Organization & Work Knoxville: Broadman Press, v 1-2 (1958), 1500 pp; 2 supplementary volumes 1958 and 1962; vol 5 = Index, 1984
  • Ammerman, Nancy, ed. Southern Baptists Observed University of Tennessee Press, 1993.
  • Ammerman, Nancy, Baptist Battles: Social Change and Religious Conflict in the Southern Baptist Convention. Rutgers University Press, 1990.
  • Baker, Robert. The Southern Baptist Convention and Its People, 1607-1972. Broadman Press, 1974.
  • Barnes, William. The Southern Baptist Convention, 1845-1953 Broadman Press, 1954.
  • Eighmy, John. Churches in Cultural Captivity: A History of the Social Attitudes of Southern Baptists. University of Tennessee Press, 1972.
  • Arthur Emery Farnsley II, Southern Baptist Politics: Authority and Power in the Restructuring of an American Denomination; Pennsylvania State University Press, 1994
  • Fuller, A. James. Chaplain to the Confederacy: Basil Manly and Baptist Life in the Old South (2002)
  • Gatewood, Willard. Controversy in the 1920s: Fundamentalism, Modernism, and Evolution. Vanderbilt University Press, 1969.
  • Barry Hankins. Religion and American Culture. Tuscaloosa and London: University of Alabama Press, 2002. Argues that Baptist conservatives see themselves as cultural warriors critiquing a secular and liberal America
  • Paul Harvey, Redeeming the South: Religious Cultures and Racial Identities among Southern Baptists, 1865-1925 University of North Carolina Press, 1997
  • Heyrman, Christine Leigh. Southern Cross: The Beginnings of the Bible Belt (1998) 1770-1860
  • Hill, Samuel, et al. Encyclopedia of Religion In The South (2005)
  • Carl L. Kell and L. Raymond Camp, In the Name of the Father: The Rhetoric of the New Southern Baptist Convention Southern Illinois University Press, 1999
  • William L. Lumpkin, Baptist History in the South: Tracing through the Separates the Influence of the Great Awakening, 1754-1787 (1995)
  • Leonard, Bill J. God's Last and Only Hope: The Fragmentation of the Southern Baptist Convention. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1990.
  • Marsden, George. Fundamentalism and American Culture: The Shaping of 20th Century Evangelicalism. Oxford University Press, 1980.
  • Rosenberg, Ellen. The Southern Baptists: A Subculture in Transition. University of Tennessee Press, 1989.
  • T. Laine Scales. All That Fits a Woman: Training Southern Baptist Women for Charity and Mission, 1907-1926 Mercer U. Press 2002
  • Oran P Smith. The Rise of Baptist Republicanism (1997), on recent voting behavior
  • Rufus B. Spain, At Ease in Zion: A Social History of Southern Baptists, 1865-1900 (1961)
  • Jerry Sutton, The Baptist Reformation: The Conservative Resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention (2000). "a testimony and an expression of gratitude to those who worked to bring about the Baptist Reformation" according to publisher
  • Gregory A. Wills, Democratic Religion: Freedom, Authority, and Church Discipline in the Baptist South, 1785-1900 Oxford University Press, 1997

External links

  • Official Website of the Southern Baptist Convention
  • International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention
  • North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention
  • LifeWay Christian Resources (formerly the Baptist Sunday School Board)
  • Woman's Missionary Union
  • Southern Baptist Historical Library and Archives
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