As the Southern Baptist Convention faces a variety of challenges, Bart Barber appears ready to be renominated as president of the SBC in June during its annual meeting in New Orleans.
Steven James, pastor of Trinity Baptist Church, Lake Charles, Louisiana, announced on Monday (Feb. 13) through Baptist Press his intentions to nominate Barber. Barber is the first and only candidate to be announced so far. He was elected the Convention’s 64th president during the 2022 SBC Annual Meeting in Anaheim, where other candidates for president included Tom Ascol and Robin Hadaway.
In his announcement to nominate Barber, James noted they served together on the trustee board of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“I watched first-hand his genuine understanding of his role in that capacity,” James said in a statement. “I found him to be biblical in his approach to the responsibilities that were assigned to him, prayerful in the matters that were presented to him and forthright with the subjects that concerned him.”
In the spotlight
James shared how he admires Barber’s ability to handle difficult questions and how he stood for biblical truth during high-profile interviews that included a 60 Minutes interview with Anderson Cooper that was was televised Oct. 9. During the interview, Cooper and Barber discussed a variety of issues including the release of last year’s SBC’s Sexual Abuse Task Force report, abortion, same-sex unions and politics.
“When asked some very pointed questions, he never compromised the Word of God or downplayed the problems that are confronting us as a Convention or a nation,” James said. “At the same time, he expressed a very positive outlook about the future of the SBC.
James noted, “Having listened to Bart preach, I know that he is conservative in his beliefs. Coupled with that, he is consistent in his walk with the Lord. In addition to everything else over the past year, he has diligently and devotedly served us well as our president.”
Barber served in 2022 as chair of SBC Committee on Resolutions and was on the committee the previous year. In 2017, he preached at the SBC Pastors Conference, served as SBC first vice president from 2013 to 2014 and served on the SBC Committee on Committees in 2008. He served on the executive board of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention from 2008 to 2014 and as a trustee of Southwestern Seminary from 2009 to 2019.
He was an adjunct professor at SWBTS from 2006 to 2009 and an active Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteer.He graduated from Baylor University and received his master of divinity and doctorate from SWBTS.
Barber and his wife, Tracy, have two children.