culture

Dr. Ken Keathley: “I’ve always considered myself a pastor who teaches theology.”

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Last week, we introduced you to the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Now, we have a chance to chat with Dr. Ken Keathley who serves as the Director of the Center.

Ken Keathley
Dr. Ken Keathley

Ken Keathley is Senior Professor of Theology and the Jesse Hendley Chair of Theology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina where he has been teaching since 2006. He also directs the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture. Read the interview below.

Don’t just try to get through your education at SEBTS; make sure you get from each class what God would have you to receive

How did God call you into ministry and into the vocation of teaching?

“In October 1975, I was converted while attending a revival meeting at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Piedmont, MO. I was a senior in high school at the time. Up to that time I was a nominal Christian who attended church sporadically. On the night of my conversion I felt a distinct call into gospel ministry. I served as senior pastor in two churches for nearly 15 years before going to Midwestern Seminary to teach theology. I’ve always considered myself a pastor who teaches theology.”

How did you arrive at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary?

“I arrived at Southeastern as a student in January 1994 and finished ultimately with my PhD in May 2000. In 2006 I was teaching at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary when I was contacted by Southeastern about returning to Wake Forest. Dr. Bush (the CFC’s namesake) had taken ill and in the shuffling of positions there was an opening for me as Dean of Graduate Studies and as a theology professor.”

What excites you most about the L. Russ Bush Center?

“The Bush Center (CFC) addresses the pressing topics of the day, whether in the field of ethics, apologetics, creation care, or cultural engagement. The CFC has a mandate to speak to any issue that commands the conversation in the public square. We are called to faithfully demonstrate how the claims of Christ speak to every area of life.” 

What advice would you give to new students at SEBTS?

“Don’t just try to get through your education at SEBTS; make sure you get from each class what God would have you to receive.”

Who’s your favorite pastor/theologian and/or favorite quote?

“Irenaeus, the great 2nd century pastor-theologian of Lyon: ‘The glory of God is a man fully alive; the life of a man is the vision of God’ (AH 4.20.7)”

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Center for Faith and Culture

The L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture seeks to engage culture as salt and light, presenting the Christian faith and demonstrating its implications for all areas of human existence.

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