Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Southern Baptist leader Daniel Akin is concerned about declining baptism totals, a benchmark used by the denomination to gauge the effectiveness of missions and evangelism. To fix the problem he proposes that the denomination focus on ten “commitments” including committing to biblically healthy churches, sound biblical preaching, and . . . having more babies .

The last item on Akins’ Great Commission Resurgence petition is raising some eyebrows: “We call upon all Southern Baptists to build gospel-saturated homes that see children as a gift from God and as our first and primary mission field. (Deut. 6:1-9; Psalm 127, 128; Eph. 6:4)”

In case anyone doesn’t get the point, the seminary president makes it explicit :

“You say, ‘What are you saying?’ I’m saying you need to have a bunch of kids,” Akin said. “It has a missiological motivation.”

Other notable Southern Baptist leaders including Al Mohler and Russell Moore have also called on Baptists—indeed all Christians—to throw out the birth control pills and fulfill the culture mandate to “be fruitful and multiply.” Over the past few years, one of the hot topics in evangelical bioethics is whether the Catholic Church hasn’t been right all along about contraceptive use being a sin. And on the popular level, the pro-natalist quiverful movement has exploded within churches and homeschooling circles.

Soon when you see a family with a dozen children you may find yourself thinking, “Oh, they must be Baptist.”

(Via: Mere Comments )

Dear Reader,

We launched the First Things 2023 Year-End Campaign to keep articles like the one you just read free of charge to everyone.

Measured in dollars and cents, this doesn't make sense. But consider who is able to read First Things: pastors and priests, college students and professors, young professionals and families. Last year, we had more than three million unique readers on

Informing and inspiring these people is why First Things doesn't only think in terms of dollars and cents. And it's why we urgently need your year-end support.

Will you give today?

Make My Gift

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles