Russell D. Moore

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Russell D. Moore
Russell D. Moore Preaching.jpg
Born October 9, 1971
Residence Brentwood, Tennessee
Education Ph.D., Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; M.Div., New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary; B.S., University of Southern Mississippi
Occupation president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention
Religion Christian
Spouse(s) Maria Hanna Moore
Children Benjamin, Timothy, Samuel, Jonah, and Taylor Moore

Russell D. Moore is an American evangelical theologian, ethicist, preacher, and President of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (Baptist Press). He previously served at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, one of six seminaries of the Southern Baptist Convention, as Dean of the School of Theology, Senior Vice President for Academic Administration, and as Professor of Christian Theology and Ethics.


Early life and education[edit]

Moore was born and reared in the coastal town of Biloxi, Mississippi, the eldest son of Gary and Renee Moore. He earned a B.S. in political science and history from the University of Southern Mississippi, an M.Div. in biblical studies from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in systematic theology from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Political background[edit]

Prior to entering the ministry, Moore was an aide to U. S. Congressman Gene Taylor (D-Miss), serving in various roles including as campaign communications director and press spokesman in Taylor's 1992 campaign against Republican Paul Harvey.


On May 27, 1994, Moore married Maria Hanna Moore. Having adopted their first two sons from a Russian orphanage, Moore has written and spoken extensively on the topic of adoption from a Christian perspective, including his book Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches.


Moore served as a youth minister at his home church, Woolmarket Baptist Church while in seminary, and then as associate pastor of Bay Vista Baptist Church in Biloxi, where he was ordained to gospel ministry.

In 2001, Moore was appointed to the faculty of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. As Professor of Christian Theology and Ethics, Moore was responsible for teaching across a spectrum of topics including systematic theology, Christian ethics, church life, pastoral ministry, and cultural engagement. In addition to his role on the faculty, he also served as Executive Director of the Carl F. H. Henry Institute for Evangelical Engagement from 2001-2009.

In 2004, Moore was named Dean of the School of Theology and Senior Vice President for Academic Administration. In this role, in addition to his regular teaching and lecturing, Moore served as the chief academic officer of the seminary, responsible for all curriculum and the administration of the seminary. Beyond these roles, Moore served as Executive Editor of The Southern Baptist Journal of Theology, and currently serves as Senior Editor for Touchstone Magazine, and Chairman of the Board for The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

On June 1, 2013, Moore became President of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the Southern Baptist Convention's official entity assigned to address social, moral, and ethical concerns. In this role, Moore leads the organization, which maintains offices in both Nashville and Washington, D.C. in their advocacy efforts—addressing especially the issues of religious liberty, human dignity, family stability, and civil society.

Moore is also an active churchman and denominational servant; from 2008-2012 he served as a full-time teaching pastor at Highview Baptist Church, where he preached weekly and also taught an adult Bible study class. More broadly, Moore has served extensively within the Southern Baptist Convention, as chairman and four-time member of the Resolutions committee, as a member of the Ethics and Public Affairs Committee of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, and as a regular correspondent and columnist for Baptist Press.

Writings and cultural engagement[edit]

Moore is a widely-sought commentator and speaks frequently to issues of theology, culture, and public policy, having been quoted or published by many of the nation's leading news agencies and periodicals, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, USA Today, and the Associated Press.

Moore hosts a program called "Questions & Ethics," where he provides insight into how Christians should navigate through life's most challenging moral and ethical issues.[1] In addition, Moore served as a regular guest host of "The Albert Mohler Program," hosting hundreds of broadcasts of this nationally syndicated daily radio program.

Moore blogs frequently at his "Moore to the Point" website, and is the author or editor of five books, including Tempted and Tried: Temptation and the Triumph of Christ, Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches, and The Kingdom of Christ: The New Evangelical Perspective. In addition to these, Moore is also the author of dozens of scholarly articles and essays within the field of systematic theology and Christian ethics.

Theological views[edit]

Moore writes from the perspective of a theologically conservative Baptist Christian who affirms the inerrancy of Scripture[2] and a complementarian position on gender roles, as well as a belief in a literal hell and exclusivist salvation views.[3]

He works extensively in the area of Christian eschatology, highlighting the kingdom of God as the center of theology and ethics.[4] Moore is a leading evangelical figure calling for a vision of the kingdom as "already" and "not yet."[5] Moore emphasizes the kingdom as a spiritual warfare uprooting the demonic powers, an emphasis that shows up not only in his works on the kingdom and on temptation but also in his writings on, for example, orphan care.[6]

Moore is especially interested in issues of ethics and religious liberty. In his early work, he argued for the early Baptist commitment to religious liberty represented by such figures as Isaac Backus, John Leland, and Jeremiah Moore as consistently conservative, over against those who would articulate a more secularist understanding of the separation of church and state.[7]

In ethics, Moore stands within the conservative stream of communitarianism, calling for a Christian demonstration of ethical transformation within the church as the initial manifestation of the kingdom.[8] Heavily influenced by theologians Abraham Kuyper and Carl F. H. Henry, Moore articulates a conservative evangelical call for justice for the vulnerable, including care for widows, orphans, the unborn, the disabled, the elderly, and the undocumented.[9] He has also called on evangelicals, especially Southern Baptist Christians, to repudiate their racist legacy by working for churches that are multiracial venues of reconciliation as a witness to the coming kingdom.[10]

In eschatology, Moore believes in an "inaugurated eschatology" in which the Kingdom of God is "already/not yet." Consistent with this position, he sees Jesus Christ as the full inheritor of God's promises to Israel, and that the church receives the benefits of this as it is "in" Christ.[11]

Other views[edit]

In 2014 Moore commented on reparative therapy, saying, "The utopian idea if you come to Christ and if you go through our program, you're going to be immediately set free from attraction or anything you're struggling with, I don't think that's a Christian idea. Faithfulness to Christ means obedience to Christ. It does not necessarily mean that someone's attractions are going to change."[12] He added, "The Bible doesn't promise us freedom from temptation. The Bible promises us the power of the spirit to walk through temptation."[13] Moore also said at that time that the Southern Baptists' Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission was working with parents of those who are gay and lesbian, adding, "The response is not shunning, putting them out on the street. The answer is loving your child."[14]

Select bibliography[edit]

Books authored[edit]

  • Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel (B&H, forthcoming)
  • The Christ-Shaped Marriage: Love, Fidelity, and the Gospel (B&H, forthcoming)
  • Tempted and Tried: Temptation and the Triumph of Christ (Crossway, 2011)
  • Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches (Crossway, 2009)
  • The Kingdom of Christ: The New Evangelical Perspective (Crossway, 2004)

Books edited[edit]

  • Abortion and the Gospel (SBTS Press, forthcoming)
  • A Guide to Adoption and Orphan Care (SBTS Press, 2012)
  • Why I am a Baptist (B&H, 2001)

Book contributions[edit]

  • "Kingdom: Heaven after Earth, Heaven on Earth, or Something Else Entirely?" in Don't Call it a Comeback: The Old Faith for a New Day (Crossway, 2011), 117-27.
  • "Theology Bleeds: Why Theological Vision Matters for the Great Commission, and Vice-Versa," in The Great Commission Resurgence: Fulfilling God's Mandate in Our Time (B&H, 2010), 103-20.
  • "Conservative Christians in an Era of Christian Conservatives: Reclaiming the Struggle for Religious Liberty from Cultural Captivity" in First Freedom: The Baptist Perspective on Religious Liberty (B&H Academic, 2007), 143-54.
  • "General Revelation," and "Eschatology," in A Theology for the Church (B&H Academic, 2007), 71-117, 858-926.
  • "Baptist View: Christ's Presence as Memorial," in A Meal that Unites or Divides? Four Views on the Lord's Supper (Zondervan, 2007), 29-47.
  • "Till Every Foe is Vanquished: Emerging Sociopolitical Implications of Progressive Dispensational Eschatology," in Looking to the Future: Evangelical Studies in Eschatology (Baker, 2001), 342-61.

Representative articles[edit]


  1. ^ "[ ]"
  2. ^ Russell Moore, "Why I'm a Happy Evangelical," [10 December 2005]. Online.
  3. ^ Russell Moore, "After Patriarchy, What? Why Egalitarians are Winning the Evangelical Gender Debate," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 49 (Fall 2006): 569-76; idem, "Pastoral Leadership and the Gender Issue: What Does Courage Look Like?" [21 February 2008].
  4. ^ Russell Moore, "Kingdom First: How the Reign of Christ Transforms Our Lives, Our Churches, and Our World," [8 September 2008]. Online.
  5. ^ Russell Moore, "The Evangelical Uneasy Conscience Faces the Future," [22 January 2012]. Online.
  6. ^ Russell D. Moore, "Triumph of the Warrior King: A Theology of the Great Commission." Online.
  7. ^ Russell D. Moore, "Baptist After All: Resurgent Conservatives Face the Future," in Why I am a Baptist (ed. Tom J. Nettles and Russell D. Moore; Nashville: B&H, 2001), 233-46.
  8. ^ Russell D. Moore and Robert E. Sagers, "The Kingdom of God and the Church: A Baptist Reassessment," The Southern Baptist Journal of Theology 12 (Spring 2008): 68-86
  9. ^ Russell Moore, "Orphan Care and the Great Commission Resurgence," [26 June 2009]. Online; Southern Baptist Convention, "On Adoption and Orphan Care," [June 2009]. Online; Russell Moore, "Immigration and the Gospel," [17 June 2011]. Online.
  10. ^ Russell Moore, "Black and White and Red All Over: Why Racial Justice is a Gospel Issue," [12 June 2012]. Online; idem, "Race and the Gospel in Mississippi," [30 July 2012]. Online.
  11. ^ " From the House of Jacob to the Iowa Coaucuses: The Future of Israel in Contemporary Evangelical Political Ehtics." Southern Baptist Journal of Theology, Winter, 2007. pg. 17.
  12. ^ "Evangelical Leader Russell Moore Denounces 'Ex-Gay Therapy'". The Huffington Post. 28 October 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  13. ^ "Evangelical Leader Russell Moore Denounces 'Ex-Gay Therapy'". The Huffington Post. 28 October 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  14. ^ "Evangelical Leader Russell Moore Denounces 'Ex-Gay Therapy'". The Huffington Post. 28 October 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 

External links[edit]