New SHP volume collects 40 sermons from founding president B.H. Carroll

Alex Sibley
| Mar 10, 2021

Seminary Hill Press (SHP) released today The B. H. Carroll Pulpit, a collection of 40 sermons and addresses from the founding president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. SHP is the publishing arm of Southwestern Seminary.

Adam W. Greenway, ninth president of Southwestern Seminary and editor of the Carroll Pulpit, writes in the book’s preface, “Benajah Harvey Carroll, our founder and first president, was a towering figure in Texas and Southern Baptist life during the last half of the 19th century and early decades of the 20th century. … While his most enduring institutional legacy was the seminary he founded in his later years, he was first and foremost a pastor and preacher of the Gospel—and his sermons were first and foremost his means of communicating God’s truth.”

Describing the collection as “a primer of Carroll’s homiletical and persuasive powers,” Greenway says these 40 sermons and addresses are of note “both for the importance of the subjects addressed and for the influence wrought by the messages.” 

The volume reprints sermons originally published in the works Baptists and Their Doctrines and Evangelistic Sermons, as well as 19 additional messages from Carroll’s time as pastor of the First Baptist Church of Waco and president of Southwestern Seminary. These messages are a representative sample of the main themes and concerns of Carroll’s nearly 50 years of Gospel ministry in the pulpit, from his church, and from denominational platforms. 

Among the 40 collected sermons are:

  • “My Infidelity and What Became of It,” Carroll’s compelling conversion testimony, telling the story of his Christian upbringing that nevertheless found him a self-described “infidel” as a young man. 
  • “A Sermon to Preachers,” sometimes referred to as “I Magnify Mine Office,” preached to the Baptist General Convention of Texas in 1892. F.M. McConnell, secretary of state missions for Oklahoma Baptists, later said that this sermon “was one of the most influential sermons for preachers undoubtedly that the world ever heard.”
  • “The True Seminary Idea,” a report to the 1907 meeting of the BGCT, wherein Carroll, as dean of the Baylor Theological Seminary, makes the case for the need for a stand-alone seminary, which became Southwestern Seminary in 1908. 
  • Carroll’s address to the first graduating class of Southwestern Seminary in 1908, charging the 21 graduates—“pioneer representatives of the seminary”—to help the school by being “constructive and not destructive factors” who support Texas and SBC causes. 
  • “Distinctive Baptist Principles,” preached to a pastors’ conference in Dallas in 1903. It was so influential that the conference attendees voted unanimously that it should be published as a pamphlet, from which it was captured for this book. 
  • “Creeds and Confessions of Faith,” a two-part sermon that forcefully defends confessionalism as vitally important for pastors and churches, which remains a central feature of Southwestern Seminary.

“Although these messages are from over a century ago,” writes Greenway, “we believe the truths expounded, beliefs taught, and convictions elucidated are ones that will well serve Southern Baptists and other Christians today and until Christ returns.”

In his foreword to the volume, Gregory A. Wills, research professor of church history and Baptist heritage, writes, “The publication of this volume by Seminary Hill Press fulfills a longstanding conviction that the life and thought of B.H. Carroll deserve renewed attention.”

Wills, director of the B.H. Carroll Center for Baptist Heritage and Mission, adds, “His life and thought can instruct and encourage pastors and churches in ways that seem peculiarly suited to help us address current challenges.”

The B. H. Carroll Pulpit is available for $24.99 at SeminaryHillPress.com. The book is the second in SHP’s Legacy Series. Last year, a 40th-anniversary edition of Baptists and the Bible by L. Russ Bush and Tom J. Nettles was published as the first title in the Legacy Series.

Below is the Table of Contents for The B. H. Carroll Pulpit:

Key Sermons and Messages

  1. My Infidelity and What Became of It 
  2. Watching Jesus on the Cross 
  3. Three Hours of Darkness 
  4. God’s Sovereign Control of the Gospel 
  5. In Support of the Home Mission Board 
  6. The Death of Spurgeon
  7. A Sermon to Preachers 
  8. Papal Fields 
  9. Baptism in Water 
  10. Baptism in the Spirit 
  11. Baptism in Fire 
  12. Farewell Address to First Baptist Church of Waco 
  13. Opening Address Before the Theological Department of Baylor University 
  14. An Address on Evangelism 
  15. “The True Seminary Idea”
  16. Address to the First Graduating Class of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary 
  17. Creeds and Confessions of Faith, Part I
  18. Creeds and Confessions of Faith, Part II
  19. Christ Died for Our Sins

Evangelistic Sermons

  1. The Prodigal Son
  2. Salvation from Sin
  3. The Nature and Person of Our Lord
  4. Comfort in the Shepherd’s Staff
  5. The Shining of the Face of Moses
  6. Watch, Work, War
  7. “Blessed Are They That Mourn”
  8. No Cross, No Crown
  9. God’s Help in the Hour of Trial
  10. Encouragement to Prayer
  11. Volunteers, Not Conscripts, for the Army of Jesus 

Baptists and Their Doctrines

  1. Distinctive Baptist Principles
  2. Ecclesia—The Church
  3. The Baptists One Hundred Years Ago
  4. Sermons on the Resurrection: The Test of Messiahship
  5. Sermons on the Resurrection: Evidences of the Resurrection
  6. Sermons on the Resurrection: Resurrection of the Dead
  7. Sermons on The Judgment: The Foundations of The Judgment
  8. Sermons on The Judgment: The Righteous Judgment of God
  9. Sermons on The Judgment: The Christian at The Judgment
  10. Sermons on The Judgment: The Sinner at The Judgment