Purpose & History

Introducing the Florida School of Preaching

For "whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved." How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!" (Rom. 10:13-15, NKJV)

Romans 10:13-15 is a chain. A chain is used to connect the items attached at either of its ends. In the case of Paul's metaphorical chain, we find at one end the need to call on the name of the Lord if a person is to be saved. At the other end of the chain, we find a person must hear about the Lord to have any hope of calling on Him. What brings together the one who needs to call on the name of the Lord with the knowledge necessary to call on Him? Paul's answer is a preacher.
Preaching the gospel is the chain that brings together one who needs to believe with the knowledge to make belief possible. Training men to preach is truly one of the great mission works of the church today, for no mission work takes place without someone teaching or being sent.

How Preachers Are Made

How are preachers made? There is a popular idea that God drops preachers down from heaven through some kind of mystical calling received here on earth. There is no evidence for this kind of calling in the New Testament. According to the Bible, preachers are taught.

The Florida School of Preaching is dedicated to serving the churches of Christ through training Christian men to preach the gospel. The template for creating preachers today is contained in 2Timothy 2:2,

"And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also."
The pattern is simple: faithful men select faithful men to whom the gospel is entrusted that they, in turn, might teach others. This passage well describes what takes place at the Florida School of Preaching.

History

The Florida School of Preaching began as the result of the vision of a few faithful brethren. B.C. Carr, who was then preaching for what would later become the South Florida Avenue church of Christ, was challenged by brother B.C. Goodpasture to consider starting a school of preaching in Lakeland, Florida. Largely due to the direction that Florida Christian College took over the church cooperation issues, a great need arose in Florida for training Scripturally balanced preachers. About that time, G.K. Wallace retired from Freed-Hardeman University and moved to central Florida. He also encouraged brother Carr to start a preaching school. The South Florida Avenue eldership agreed to allow the School to use the congregation's facilities with brother Carr as the director. The foresight of these men made the School possible, and in September 1969, it began its first semester of operation. The Florida School of Preaching owes much to the South Florida Avenue church, not only for her role in starting the School but for her consistent support through the years.

Influence

The influence of the Florida School of Preaching is global. Our students have worked in every part of the world in mission efforts. Our annual lectureship reaches people in many different countries via books, digital media, and internet streaming. Satellite classes are also offered in various areas, making learning available to those who are unable to attend classes at our main campus. Additionally, some of our classes each semester are available online for qualified students.