Trained in Truth. Trusted for Truth.
The pastors, missionaries, and ministry leaders of the 21st century won’t need less theology - they’ll need more.
Trust. It’s something that’s earned. It doesn’t come quickly. It’s the result of being time tested. When the trustworthiness of God’s Word was being challenged, we stood for truth. We place our trust in the truth that endures. We are The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and we are Trusted for Truth.
The Most Trusted Name in Theological Education.
The ministry leaders of the 21st century won’t need less theological training — they’ll need more. That’s why when many seminaries offer faster, easier, simpler, we’ll embrace deeper, richer, and stronger.
“Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.”
Under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, the mission of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary is to be totally committed to the Bible as the Word of God, to the Great Commission as our mandate, and to be a servant of the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention by training, educating, and preparing ministers of the gospel for more faithful service.
With students from all 50 states and 75 countries, Southern is the largest A.T.S. accredited seminary in the world.
- 2,200 Master of Divinity (M.Div.) Students
- 4,018 Graduate Students
- 32,000 Graduates Since 1859
Renowned for the highest standards of biblical scholarship, our professors are leaders in their fields.
One of Southern Seminary’s distinguishing features is its faculty, whose contributions place Southern at the forefront of evangelical scholarship. The faculty’s academic achievement is matched by a willingness to invest in students, ensuring that an indelible mark is left on students’ entire lives. Studying at Southern not only gives students the chance to read good books, but it also lets them study with the authors.
What We Believe
Bible-saturated and historically grounded, Southern Seminary remains committed to doctrinal faithfulness.
Abstract of Principles
When the original charter of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary was adopted in 1858, it contained the following statement which continues as a part of the “fundamental laws.”
Every professor of the institution shall be a member of a regular Baptist church; and all persons accepting professorships in this seminary shall be considered, by such acceptance, as engaging to teach in accordance with, and not contrary to, the Abstract of Principles hereinafter laid down, a departure from which principles on his part shall be considered grounds for his resignation or removal by the Trustees, to wit:
I. The Scriptures
- The Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and are the only sufficient, certain and authoritative rule of all saving knowledge, faith and obedience.
- There is but one God, the Maker, Preserver and Ruler of all things, having in and of Himself, all perfections, and being infinite in them all; and to Him, all creatures owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience.
III. The Trinity
- God is revealed to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit each with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence or being.
- God from eternity, decrees or permits all things that come to pass, and perpetually upholds, directs and governs all creatures and all events; yet so as not in any wise to be the author or approver of sin nor to destroy the free will and responsibility of intelligent creatures.
- Election is God’s eternal choice of some persons unto everlasting life-not because of foreseen merit in them, but of His mere mercy in Christ-in consequence of which choice they are called, justified and glorified.
VI. The Fall of Man
- God originally created Man in His own image, and free from sin; but, through the temptation of Satan, he transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original holiness and righteousness; whereby his posterity inherit a nature corrupt and wholly opposed to God and His law, are under condemnation, and as soon as they are capable of moral action, become actual transgressors.
VII. The Mediator
- Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, is the divinely appointed mediator between God and man. Having taken upon Himself human nature, yet without sin, He perfectly fulfilled the law; suffered and died upon the cross for the salvation of sinners. He was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended to His Father, at whose right hand He ever liveth to make intercession for His people. He is the only Mediator, the Prophet, Priest and King of the Church, and Sovereign of the Universe.
- Regeneration is a change of heart, wrought by the Holy Spirit, who quickeneth the dead in trespasses and sins enlightening their minds spiritually and savingly to understand the Word of God, and renewing their whole nature so that they love and practice holiness. It is a work of God’s free and special grace alone.
- Repentance is an evangelical grace, wherein a person being by the Holy Spirit, made sensible of the manifold evil of his sin, humbleth himself for it, with godly sorrow, detestation of it, and self-abhorrence, with a purpose and endeavor to walk before God so as to please Him in all things.
- Saving faith is the belief, on God’s authority, of whatsoever is revealed in His Word concerning Christ; accepting and resting upon Him alone for justification and eternal life. It is wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit, and is accompanied by all other saving graces, and leads to a life of holiness.
- Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal of sinners, who believe in Christ, from all sin, through the satisfaction that Christ has made; not for anything wrought in them or done by them; but on account of the obedience and satisfaction of Christ, they receiving and resting on Him and His righteousness by faith.
- Those who have been regenerated are also sanctified by God’s word and Spirit dwelling in them. This sanctification is progressive through the supply of Divine strength, which all saints seek to obtain, pressing after a heavenly life in cordial obedience to all Christ’s commands.
XIII. Perseverance of the Saints
- Those whom God hath accepted in the Beloved, and sanctified by His Spirit, will never totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere to the end; and though they may fall through neglect and temptation, into sin, whereby they grieve the Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, bring reproach on the Church, and temporal judgments on themselves, yet they shall be renewed again unto repentance, and be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
XIV. The Church
- The Lord Jesus is the head of the Church, which is composed of all His true disciples, and in Him is invested supremely all power for its government. According to His commandment, Christians are to associate themselves into particular societies or churches; and to each of these churches, He hath given needful authority for administering that order, discipline, and worship which He hath appointed. The regular officers of a Church are Bishops or Elders, and Deacons.
- Baptism is an ordinance of the Lord Jesus, obligatory upon every believer, wherein he is immersed in water in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, as a sign of his fellowship with the death and resurrection of Christ, of remission of sins, and of giving himself up to God, to live and walk in newness of life. It is prerequisite to church fellowship, and to participation in the Lord’s Supper.
XVI. The Lord’s Supper
- The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of Jesus Christ, to be administered with the elements of bread and wine, and to be observed by His churches till the end of the world. It is in no sense a sacrifice but is designed to commemorate His death, to confirm the faith and other graces of Christians, and to be a bond, pledge, and renewal of their communion with Him, and of their church fellowship.
XVII. The Lord’s Day
- The Lord’s Day is a Christian institution for regular observance and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion, both public and private, resting from worldly employments and amusements, works of necessity and mercy only excepted.
XVIII. Liberty of Conscience
- God alone is Lord of the conscience; and He hath left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men, which are in anything contrary to His word, or not contained in it. Civil magistrates being ordained of God, subjection in all lawful things commanded by them ought to be yielded by us in the Lord, not only for wrath but also for conscience sake.
XIX. The Resurrection
- The bodies of men after death return to dust, but their spirits return immediately to God-the righteous to rest with Him; the wicked, to be reserved under darkness to the judgment. At the last day, the bodies of all the dead, both just and unjust, will be raised.
XX. The Judgment
- God hath appointed a day, wherein He will judge the world by Jesus Christ when every one shall receive according to his deeds; the wicked shall go into everlasting punishment; the righteous, into everlasting life.
Rigorous Training for a Lifetime of Service
Southern offers a number of different degree programs and concentrations so that you can prepare for the ministry God has prepared for you.
The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary is comprised of three separate schools — two premier graduate schools and an undergraduate college.
School of Theology
The School of Theology provides the highest quality training in the foundational disciplines of ministry and scholarship, including biblical studies, systematic theology, church history, and preaching.
Billy Graham School
The Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism, and Ministry is the largest Great Commission school in the world, dedicated to training pastors and laypersons for effective church and cross-cultural ministry.
Boyce College provides serious undergraduate education for students who will serve the church and engage the culture from a conviction and biblical worldview, regardless of the challenges before them.
Fully Accredited Seminary Education
Southern Seminary is a private not-for-profit institution accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.
KY 40280 Louisville, Kentucky, USA