June 13, 2013
Contact: Jeff Walton 202-682-4131, 202-413-5639 cell
“Land’s reliable and strong voice on these issues was too rare in the denominational world and will be much missed.”
-IRD President Mark Tooley
Washington, DC—Southern Baptists gathered in Houston for their annual convention heard an address from the outgoing head of the denomination’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission. Richard Land was joined by his successor, Russell Moore, in giving a report from the denomination’s public policy arm.
During the address, Land encouraged Baptists to work towards revival and tackle a host of moral issues. Listing sanctity of life, the sanctity of marriage “as defined by God” and pornography as major concerns, Land saw a nation in peril from “self-inflicted wounds” more damaging than external enemies.
Calling upon Baptists to recommit themselves, Land declared: “We’re not going to be thermometers that reflect the temperature in society. We’re going to be thermostats that dictate the spiritual temperature in our society.”
IRD President Mark Tooley commented:
“Richard Land across 25 years stalwartly extolled traditional Christian teachings about defending vulnerable human life, traditional marriage, religious liberty and the divinely ordained duty of government to defend the nation from aggression.
“Land’s reliable and strong voice on these issues was too rare in the denominational world and will be much missed. God bless him in his next vocation.
“His successor Russell Moore will also be a forceful, articulate voice on these issues speaking for and to a new generation. As the largest Protestant body in the U.S., Southern Baptists have a special opportunity and duty for leadership in American religion and wider society.”