Name: Danny Akin
Age: 57 (born January 2, 1957)
Why you’ve heard of him: A leading Baptist academic, Akin has used his platform to promote a greater commitment to expository preaching and missions, including calling for a Great Commission Resurgence among Southern Baptists.
Position: He is currently the sixth president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Previous: Akin began his career at Criswell College, where he taught and served as dean. Akin transitioned to SEBTS, where he served as an assistant professor and dean, before later joining the faculty at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. In 2004, he returned to SEBTS as president.
Books: Akin has authored, co-authored or edited numerous Bible commentaries and scholarly theological works, among his published books are: A Theology for the Church, God on Sex: The Creator’s Ideas about Love, Intimacy, and Marriage, Vibrant Church: Becoming a Healthy Church in the 21st Century (co-authored with Thom Rainer), 10 Who Changed the World, and Christology: The Study of Christ.
Why he’s important: He has contributed much to the direction of the SBC and evangelicalism as a whole through his personal passions and academic works. As president of SEBTS, two centers have flourished under his leadership – one concerned with the intersection of faith and culture, the other focused on the Great Commission.
He has written and taught widely on sex and marriage, as well as preaching and teaching. Akin’s book Engaging Exposition, co-authored with Bill Curtis and Stephen Rummage, was named a book of the year by Preaching Today. His desire to see pastors and church leaders better understand and teach God’s Word led SEBTS to offer his hermeneutics course for free online.
Akin’s April 2009 chapel sermon entitled “Axiom’s for a Great Commission Resurgence” became a catalyst for the SBC to build upon the Conservative Resurgence and unify around a commitment to fulfilling the Great Commission. The movement called for a streamlining of denominational structures so that more funds could be designated toward mission efforts, particularly international ones. It culminated in the forming of a Great Commission Resurgence Task Force in 2009 and the adopting of the Task Force’s report at the SBC annual meeting in 2010.
“When sex and marriage are experienced and enjoyed together as God intended, the joys and blessings that are ours are seldom, if ever, surpassed in this life.”
“What you say is more important than how you say it, but how you say it has never been more important.”
“God does not call everyone to leave home and go to the nations. But I am convinced He is calling more than are going.”
“God does not call all to be international or North American missionaries. However, He does call all to be fully engaged in the work of missions. He calls all of us to be Great Commission Christians.”
“We truly should pray not, ‘Lord, should I go?’ No, we should rather pray, ‘Lord, why should I stay?!’”
Others in the “Know Your Southern Baptists” Series: