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Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1859-2009$
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Gregory Wills

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195377149

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195377149.001.0001

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Liberalism and the Limits of Realist Diplomacy

(p.405) 10 LOSING TRUST
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1859-2009

Gregory A. Wills

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on McCall's pursuit of the realist policy. The seminary's faculty largely followed his counsel and focused on the basic gospel beliefs and Baptist distinctives that they shared with their constituency, and advanced progressive views with caution and respect. When critics raised the alarm of heresy, McCall pacified them. In the 1960s and 1970s McCall provided a relatively safe haven for Southern Seminary's progressive faculty. But by the end of his tenure in 1982, the realist diplomacy was failing. The evidence of the liberalism of the faculty was too great to deny plausibility. And at the same time, Southern Baptists like many Americans, were more willing to fight for conservative values.

Keywords:   Southern Baptists, Baptist seminary, liberalism, Duke K. McCall, realist policy

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