Why Dale Moody blew up his career

MoodyI am passing along my latest opinion piece for Baptist News Global.

Dale Moody was a professor at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary between 1947 and 1983.  If you are familiar with W.A. Criswell you will have a pretty good notion of Moody’s speaking style.  He was brash.  He was an inveterate name-dropper (and he had so many names to drop).  Moreover, he claimed to believe the Bible from Genesis to Revelation.

The comparisons end there.  Unlike Criswell, Moody embraced the theory of biological evolution and had no trouble believing that the earth was every bit as ancient as the scientific community claimed.  His conservative theology notwithstanding, Moody had kissed dispensational eschatology (think “Left Behind”) and fundamentalism goodbye.

In the early 1980s, Moody sacrificed his career over the Southern Baptist doctrine of eternal security, popularly known as “once saved, always saved.”  No one could understand why the popular preacher and teacher would challenge one of the pillars of Southern Baptist orthodoxy.

In this piece, I argue that Moody’s crusade against “once saved, always saved” anticipated the clergy sexual abuse currently roiling the Southern Baptist Convention.

3 thoughts on “Why Dale Moody blew up his career

  1. Moody was an exceptional teacher and preacher who challenged us in many ways. He did NOT believe in eternal security! I enjoyed his classes and I could feel the growth in my theological development.

  2. Al, I appreciated all you shared in the article, especially about local church autonomy. We can only hope that the Church will see this as a great opportunity to put the proper policies and procedures in place. Then call a spade a spade and deal with whomever. I loathe that some feel their position in the church puts them above any accountability.

  3. Dale Moody got his belief in the apostasy of the soul from the same book others find eternal security or perseverance of the saints. All the theological discussions are to take eyes off the work and person of Jesus, and his ministry to feeding the hungry, setting the captives free, visiting those that are in prison, and giving water to the thirsty folks. Moody was a theologian and not some two by four Southern Baptist preacher.

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