First ERLC Academy Surpasses Seminary Student’s Expectations

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The first Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Academy surpassed even the lofty anticipation of at least one seminary student.

After participating in the ethics training May 18-19 in Nashville, Ronni Kurtz acknowledged he “had high expectations going into the seminar, and all of them were not only met but completely exceeded.”

“I came into the seminar looking forward to hearing Dr. [Russell] Moore’s position on each particular issue,” Kurtz told Baptist Press in email comments. “I walked away having a clear framework of how and why one should pursue Christian ethics.”

Kurtz, a Master of Divinity student at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, was one of 125 participants in the inaugural ERLC Academy. Most were students from Southern Baptist seminaries, including Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, in addition to Midwestern.

For two days, ERLC president Moore lectured on ethics and responded to questions — many on issues students reportedly were confronting. He spoke to the participants gathered in the auditorium of the Southern Baptist Convention building and to an online, live-streaming audience.

The lectures covered such general topics as the kingdom of God and Christian ethics, and establishing a framework for Christian ethics. Moore also addressed such issues as religious liberty, marriage, gender identity, the sanctity of human life, contraception, artificial reproductive technology, capital punishment, environmental stewardship and poverty.

He enjoyed “thinking through these important questions” with the seminary students, Moore said.

“Ethics isn’t about abstract theory,” he told BP in a written statement. “Ethics is central to the Christian life, because it is the outworking of the Gospel in our lives and in that of the church.

“In preaching, we have to define what repentance is, and what should be repented of,” Moore said, “and in discipleship, we apply the Bible to how we live in families, in communities, in nations.”

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SOURCE: Baptist Press
Tom Strode

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