The primary reason I’m a professor is because I want to help equip a generation of collegians and seminarians to be pastor-theologians, particularly in a Southern Baptist context. In fact, my SEBTS students have sometimes accused me of using my church history and Baptist history classes as a platform for teaching pastoral ministry and theology. Guilty as charged. But don’t let them fool you; most of our students, including those who don’t feel a calling to be pastors or church planters, resonate with this vision for gospel-centered, theologically driven local church ministry.
My friend Owen Strachan, who teaches at Boyce College in Louisville, has a similar vision for theological education. Owen is a historical theologian whose scholarly expertise is American evangelicalism. He is currently writing a doctoral dissertation on Harold John Ockenga, one of the leading pastor-theologians and evangelical statesmen of the twentieth century. That dissertation topic hints at Owen’s commitment to helping form students into faithful pastor-theologians.
Over at my personal website, One Baptist Perspective, I’ve posted a two-part interview with Owen. We talk about Ockenga, the importance of pastor-theologians, what’s happening along these lines in the SBC, and the value of evangelical networks such as The Gospel Coalition. I hope you’ll read the interviews and that you find them helpful.