Southern Baptist “model pastor-theologian” Juan R. Sánchez has been appointed associate professor of theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, President Adam W. Greenway announced today.
“Juan Sánchez brings to Southwestern Seminary the combined experience of pastoral ministry, deep academic preparation, and theological scholarship that will richly benefit our students,” said Greenway. “Indeed, Dr. Sánchez is a model pastor-theologian for our students who are preparing to minister in pulpits across the Southern Baptist Convention. Although serving in the School of Theology, he will also teach in the seminary’s Hispanic Programs, further bolstering our already strong Spanish-language offerings. Dr. Sánchez joining our faculty is yet another evidence of God’s incredible blessings to us on Seminary Hill.”
Sánchez, who will continue to serve as senior pastor of High Pointe Baptist Church in Austin, Texas, is scheduled to deliver the convention sermon at the 2022 Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting in Anaheim. He is the first Latino pastor to be elected by messengers to give the address.
“One key way I seek to raise up the next generation of pastors and missionaries is through our local church, High Pointe Baptist Church in Austin,” Sánchez said. “Lord willing, as I enter my final 10-15 years of pastoral ministry, I want to focus my energies outside of High Pointe by investing in theological education where I live. Since I pastor in Austin, it makes perfect ministry sense to give myself to Southwestern Seminary. My aim is to take part in the work God is doing there and, by His grace, raise up the next generation of leaders for the church.”
A past president of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, since 2016 Sánchez has served as assistant professor of Christian theology at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He earned Master of Divinity (1999), Master of Theology (2002), and Doctor of Philosophy (2015) degrees from the Kentucky-based seminary and also holds a Bachelor of Music in music education from the University of Florida (1994).
“Dr. Juan Sánchez is an accomplished theologian and pastor who has taught and ministered to pastors and students around the world in both English and Spanish language instruction,” said Gregory A. Wills, dean of the School of Theology at Southwestern Seminary. “He has written four books and many articles and chapters. He has served in a variety of leadership roles among Southern Baptists and in evangelical organizations, including serving as president of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. He loves the church of Jesus Christ and has served as the pastor of the High Pointe Baptist Church in Austin since 2005. He has loved and served his wife Jeanine and their five daughters with model devotion and care. In all these areas he has sought carefully to submit in faith to God in utter trust of his Word. Students who have the opportunity to take his classes will find great profit indeed.”
Sánchez, who will serve on the faculty of the School of Theology and teach theology courses in both English and Spanish, is the board chairman of The Gospel Coalition and co-founder and president of Coalición por el Evangelio. He is the author of several books, including 1 Peter For You, Seven Dangers Facing Your Church, and The Leadership Formula: Developing the Next Generation of Leaders in the Church. Sánchez is currently writing with Edgar Aponte a systematic theology textbook in Spanish to be published by B&H Español to be released in 2024.
Prior to beginning his service at the Austin-based church in 2005, Sánchez served three churches in Florida in youth and music ministry roles, as associate pastor of First Baptist Church, Eastman, Georgia, and as senior pastor of Ryker’s Ridge Baptist Church in Madison, Indiana.
In addition to his ministry experience, Sánchez served in the United States Navy.
Sánchez’s appointment is effective immediately.