NASHVILLE – Four men have expressed their intention to be nominated as Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) president when SBC messengers gather in Nashville, June 15-16.
R. Albert Mohler Jr.
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr. announced his willingness to be nominated as SBC president last October, citing his desire to help unite Southern Baptists amid turbulent times. He is expected to be nominated by H.B. Charles, senior pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla.
In October 2019, announcing via Twitter his original intent to nominate Mohler at the 2020 SBC Annual Meeting, Charles cited “serious challenges from our culture, along with incredible opportunities for [G]ospel witness,” and that he believed Mohler was “the statesman leader we need at this precise moment. Southern Baptists know and trust (Mohler). He’s a proven leader in our convention, capable of uniting us behind our shared commitment to biblical truth and the urgency of the Great Commission.”
Because of the cancellation of the 2020 annual meeting due to the COVID-19 crisis, Charles’ nomination of Mohler was delayed until the SBC’s 2021 annual meeting.
Mike Stone, pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Blackshear, Ga., and immediate past chairman of the SBC Executive Committee, will also be nominated for SBC president, per a Jan. 13th announcement by fellow Georgia pastor Kevin Williams.
“At this critical moment in our history, Southern Baptists need to be led by a trusted local church pastor with strong convictions about the sufficiency of Scripture, a passion for evangelism, and deep experience in the work of our convention,” said Williams, the current Georgia Baptist Convention president and pastor of First Baptist Church of Villa Rica, Ga. “Pastor Mike Stone is a trusted leader among Georgia Baptists and I believe he is the kind of experienced pastor and statesman Southern Baptists need.”
Former Southern Baptist Convention President Fred Luter announced, Jan. 19, his intention to nominate longtime friend and Mobile, Ala.-area pastor Ed Litton for SBC president.
“I have known Ed Litton for over 20 years. Our relationship started when we preached for each other as part of the SBC Racial Reconciliation Sunday during the month of February,” Luter told Baptist Press. “From there our relationship developed to more than just colleagues to bring races together. We both shared the hope of drawing people closer to a relationship with Jesus Christ and then growing disciples for Christ. In both of our churches our focus has been the same all of these years.
“That’s why I am honored to nominate Ed Litton as the next president of the Southern Baptist Convention. With Ed’s commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission, he is what our convention needs to help us refocus and recommit to the biblical principles of what this convention has been known for – evangelism and discipleship.”
Since 1994 Litton has been pastor of Redemption Church in Saraland, Ala. – known as North Mobile Baptist Church until 2014.
Citing a desire for Southern Baptists’ focus to “be on the mission, with the Bible as our sole and final authority on all matters,” Northwest Baptist Convention Executive Director/Treasurer Randy Adams also announced, Jan. 20, that he would be nominated for SBC president.
Adams, who has served in his current role since 2013, intended to be nominated for SBC president at the 2020 annual meeting, but that meeting was ultimately canceled due to COVID-19.
Russell Fuller, a former professor of Old Testament at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will nominate Adams.
“Randy Adams as a pastor, as a current member of a church plant and as the current executive director/treasurer of the Northwest Baptist Convention, has demonstrated these important virtues. These are not talking points to him, but these are virtues that he has lived out in word and deed. He has never asked his employees to sign a statement of non-disclosure. He does not need to,” Fuller said.
“By God’s grace, I believe Randy Adams can lead us back to godly integrity within our convention. Randy Adams will lead us, but the grassroots of the Southern Baptist Convention must take control again by demanding transparency, accountability and genuine cooperation. I hope that you will join me in supporting Randy Adams as the next president of the SBC.”
(EDITOR’S NOTE: This story is the compilation and abbreviation of Baptist Press reports. See www.baptistpress.com for full reports.)