Earlier today, the Southern Baptist Convention's (SBC) Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) trustees elected Russell Moore as the ERLC's next president. Moore, who currently serves as a professor and dean of the School of Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will finish the semester as dean before succeeding ERLC president Richard Land in June.
Following the trustees' meeting, CT spoke with Moore about his new role and how he plans to speak for Southern Baptists in Washington, D.C.
First of all, how do you feel being selected as the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission president?
I am honored and humbled to be asked to serve Southern Baptists in this way. I love Southern Baptists and this a very emotional moment for me.
I've been thinking today—as I've been talking about speaking for Southern Baptists on issues of human dignity and religious liberty—about my indebtedness to my home church in Biloxi, Mississippi, that introduced me to Christ and instilled in me my Baptist love for the church and for liberty of conscience. My grandfather was a Southern Baptist minister in Mississippi. He died when I was six but his legacy has worked its way through my life—my entire life. It's a moment where I'm reflecting quite a bit on how much I owe to the people who went before me.
This seems like a hard time to be taking the office, because Washington is a pretty hostile place for voices that run counter to the prevailing societal consensus. How do you view the situation in Washington?
I hope to speak with convictional kindness. I hope to speak of a holistic vision of human dignity and human flourishing rooted in the kingdom of God—and to do so in a way that is grounded always in the gospel. ...