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The Water, the Table, and the Finn

SBCWitness’s very own Nathan Finn just published a white paper entitled Baptism as a Prerequisite to the Lord’s Supper, although he is probably too humble to promote himself here. This work is worth taking the time to download and read. Make sure to check out this valuable contribution to our denomination.

The Best Kept Secrets in the SBC

I've been thinking recently (always dangerous) that one of the reasons we started SBC Witness was to foster a healthy sense of cooperation among Southern Baptists, especially in the younger generation. The way I see it, you cannot have cooperation without conversation, so I thought I would throw out a topic for conversation and invite everyone else to enter that conversation. Think of this as an opportunity to stroke your inner Emergent. :-) Seriously, this should prove to be a healthy conversation and Lord willing its a conversation that will prove edifying to everyone who participates. Let's talk about your favorite preachers and why you like them so much.

Specifically, I would love to know who your favorite Southern Baptist preacher(s) is who "nobody" has ever heard of. Maybe he is the pastor of a small or relatively-unknown church. Maybe he is a professor. Maybe he is a uniquely gifted student. Maybe he has been a faithful servant who has spent his whole ministry out of the limelight. Maybe he is an up-and-coming leader who will not be unknown forever. But whoever he is, I would love to hear about him and what makes him such a good preacher. As far as the rules of the conversation go, they are pretty wide open: any suggestions are valued, though I ask that it not be an individual who has a wide following. No megachurch pastors, people with prominent media ministries or SBC institutional leaders; tell us about someone we may not know about.

I will go ahead and begin this conversation by telling you about three of my favorite preachers that nobody has ever heard of, at least nobody outside of this part of North Carolina or southeast Georgia. Allan Moseley and David Hogg are two professors at Southeastern Seminary. Dr. Moseley is the dean of students and teaches Old Testament. Dr. Hogg teaches church history. Both men are also members of Christ Baptist Church in Raleigh, where Dr. Moseley serves as senior pastor and Dr. Hogg serves as an elder and preaches on most Sunday evenings. Both of these brothers can flat preach. As an added bonus, their preaching styles are very different, providing Christ Baptist with both quality and variety in their pulpit. You can listen to their sermons here.

Another of the best preachers who nobody has ever heard of is John Clough, my childhood pastor at Central Baptist Church in Waycross, Georgia. Dr. Clough became the pastor of Central right before my family joined the church my freshman year of high school. Prior to that time we had been members of a liberal, mainline church where we were regularly fed "sermonettes for Christianettes." Things were not much better for Central: for several years they had teetered on the edge of becoming a moderate Baptist church. Until Dr. Clough came, that is. Dr. Clough preached expositionally through books of the Bible. He preached about sin. He taught that the Bible was totally truthful and absolutely sufficient. The church suffered numerical loss under Dr. Clough's leadership; 11 moderate/liberal families joined a sister church in town on the same Sunday and about 300 people left during his five year pastorate. But numbers never tell the whole story and God used Dr. Clough's preaching to cleanse Central Baptist of some unhealthy elements and to return the church to its roots as a Bible-believing, evangelistic Southern Baptist congregation.

So who are your favorite preachers who nobody has ever heard of?