Lawless will leave his position with the International Mission Board (IMB) as vice president of global theological advance. He joined the IMB as a consultant in 2008 after serving as dean of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary’s Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism in Louisville, Ky., and as vice president for academic programming and director of professional doctoral studies there. Before being named dean of the missions school in 2005, Lawless had been a professor of evangelism and church growth at Southern since 1996. He previously pastored two Ohio churches.
Lawless holds Ph.D. and M.Div. degrees from Southern Seminary and an undergraduate degree from Cumberland College (now the University of the Cumberlands) in Kentucky.
Southeastern President Daniel Akin said, “I have known Chuck for almost 20 years. He is one of the most godly men I have ever met. He is a wonderful man of God with excellent skills as an administrator, missionary, teacher and writer. He has a real passion for the nations and the Gospel. I believe he will bring enormous experience and expertise to Southeastern.”
The IMB, in a statement to Baptist Press, said it and Southeastern intend for Lawless to continue in a limited capacity to be involved in global theological advance, including assistance in the training of missionaries.
Lawless is the author of several works, including “Membership Matters,” “Spiritual Warfare,” “Discipled Warriors,” “Making Disciples through Mentoring” and “Putting on the Armor.”