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What others are saying about LifeWay nominee Thom Rainer

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–Comments by Southern Baptist leaders on the nomination of Thom S. Rainer as the next president of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention included:

— “Once again we are reminded that God always is prepared to provide a man for His Kingdom’s work in His perfect timing. Dr. Rainer’s experience as a pastor, preacher, theologian, teacher, church growth expert, analyst, entrepreneur, banker and businessman makes him an outstanding nominee for this position. His character and integrity are impeccable. He has a scholar’s mind, a pastor’s compassion and an evangelist’s passion for unsaved souls to come to Christ.

“He loves Southern Baptists and has all the skills and characteristics to give far-reaching visionary leadership to LifeWay and the convention for years to come. I commend the members of the search committee for having chosen him from the superlative panel of Southern Baptist champions they had identified as finalists. I will be praying for him and his family as they face the adjustments of transition and resettlement. They will be heartily welcomed to Nashville by the Southern Baptist family that resides in the city.”

Morris H. Chapman, president of the SBC Executive Committee.

— “We are confident that Dr. Rainer is God’s man for LifeWay in the years ahead. He is committed to the inerrancy of Scripture and to the 2000 Baptist Faith & Message (a summary of Southern Baptist doctrines). He is an effective communicator with a proven track record of servant leadership and a consistent walk with the Lord.”

Rick Evans

Chairman, presidential search committee, LifeWay’s board of trustees

— “Thom is a visionary with fresh, innovative ideas. He will appeal to our younger ministers. He is a capable, creative strategist intimately acquainted with the needs of the local church … a prolific author with a keen understanding of trends and culture. What thrills me most is his passion for God’s Kingdom work and his emphasis on evangelism.”

Tom Woodson

Senior Pastor, Sheridan Road Baptist Church, Tulsa, Okla.; recording secretary of LifeWay trustees; and member of the presidential search committee.

— “Thom Rainer is a man of absolutely incredible gifts. I have no doubt that he is God’s man to lead LifeWay Christian Resources into its future. He combines an incredible intellect with a real love for the church, an intense love for the Gospel and an understanding of how to reach people. I think Thom is the man who can really help LifeWay seize the opportunity to help churches face the 21st century and to prepare themselves in terms of ministry, solid Bible teaching and substantial church programs that I think will set the pace for the future of the evangelical world.

“Thom is a man who has truly been a friend as well as a colleague during his time at Southern Seminary. He has given incredible leadership to the Billy Graham School as its founding dean; he really helped to flesh out the entire concept. He has built a world-renowned team. Thom is himself both a researcher and one who has been able to lead others to join in that research. His books are some of the most popular and helpful among pastors….

“Thom has an incredible sense of humor. He and his wife Jo are a wonderful couple and, along with their three sons, a marvelous family. They will make Southern Baptists proud. As president of LifeWay, Thom will bring everything he is, everything he knows and everything he believes to the service of the local church in a whole new way.”

R. Albert Mohler Jr.

President, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Ky.

–“I have known Dr. Rainer for nine years. I have been blessed to be his family’s pastor and his personal friend during that time. Thom has a passion for evangelism and seeing believers grow in their faith. He has a finance and business background that (is) very helpful in leading a ministry the size of LifeWay. He possesses innovative and visionary skills that set him in the upper level of leaders in the SBC. He has a tremendous amount of experience in consulting with churches and working with publishers. He has a heart for God and a passion for people.”

Kevin Ezell

Pastor, Highview Baptist Church, Louisville, Ky.

— “Thom is one of the most talented and gifted men I know. He has been a pastor, is the leading church growth expert of our day in my judgment, is theologically sound and informed, and has a business background as well … I think he (will) do a tremendous job in building on the excellent foundation laid by Dr. Draper. I also believe, given his experience and background, that he (will) bring to LifeWay a perspective and expertise that organization has never known.”

Daniel L. Akin

President, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, N.C.

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