by Rod D. Martin
October 6, 2016

I wrote this letter to my daughter Haley this morning. What I witnessed (and took part in) speaks deeply to the integrity and the struggle of the men and women who led the Conservative Resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention, few so great among them as Dr. W. A. Criswell or so important as his namesake college.

But it also says a lot about who we want to be, and why. — RDM


Dear Haley,

This morning, every member of the Criswell College faculty, administration and Board of Trustees is signing the College’s Statement of Faith, nearly identical to that of The Martin Organization, in a public ceremony on Preview Day, while that Statement is read aloud. 

The signing, happening now as it happens each year, is being done one person at a time on a desk Dr. Criswell made with his own hands when he was twelve years old, more than 100 years ago.

What we do matters. It is a public testimony, much like a baptism, in an age that rejects and demeans that testimony. It is rare today for a college to have a Statement of Faith, much less one it takes seriously, much less still one it gladly and unanimously proclaims as binding on its members’ consciences and expressing of their hearts.

It is virtually unheard of for a company to do these things.

What we do matters. It is a light to this age, and to those ages that will follow us, all ages — this one and those to come — which may be enlightened by His light. 

Or at least, if we strive to make the name “Martin” synonymous with “lover of Christ,” it can be.

Let us endeavor to make it so.