Southern Baptists Address Importance of Colleges and Seminaries Sharing Partnership

( [email protected] ) Feb 13, 2004 12:47 PM EST

WAKE FOREST, N.C. -- "For the good of the Southern Baptist Convention, the seminaries need the colleges and universities, and the colleges and universities need the seminaries," said David Dockery, president of Union University in chapel on Southeeastern’s Wake Forest, N.C., campus on Feb. 11, Baptist Press reported.

Along with Dockery, Daniel Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary also believes Southern Baptist colleges and seminaries should partner in educating the next generation of pastors and leaders for the growth of healthy churches.

Akin believes the one who is educated at a Christian college in prior to attending a seminary gains what both Dockery and Akin call “Christian worldview.”

"They have already been in the process of cultivating a genuine Christian worldview," Akin said. "A minister that has had several years of [biblical] preparation [before seminary] has several advantages."

"We have an overarching commitment to provide a Christ-centered education that prepares men and women to serve in church and society," Dockery said. "We understand the role of institutions like Union is to serve the churches."

Dockery said that though Union is a liberal arts school with a broad-based curriculum, unlike Southeastern College which is dedicated to training future poastors and ministers, it is serving the churches by training future lay leaders to "think Christianly, and be the salt and light of the Gospel in their sphere of influence."

Southeastern College at Wake Forest, on the other hand, is a Bible college dedicated to training future pastors and ministers. But its vision intersects with a liberal arts college like Union, Akin said, when it comes to making Christian thinking and Gospel proclamation a priority.

"Having your worldview shaped, molded and firmed up has never been more critical," he said. "I can think of no better place where that can happen than at an evangelical Christian college or university."