Congratulatory Messages to
Dr. Ligon Duncan
"The news of Ligon Duncan’s appointment as Chancellor of RTS joins one of my favorite Christian leaders with one of my favorite Christian institutions. Ligon Duncan has spent his ministry career leading and shaping the First Presbyterian Church of Jackson, and now he will have wider opportunity to shape churches and missionaries around the country and the world. With God’s help, Duncan’s keen scholarly mind, warm pastoral heart, and actively working hands may bless the PCA and the Church beyond our already great hopes. I’m also excited for Duncan’s appointment to Chancellor because of RTS’ significant commitment to the recruitment and training of African-American students through the African-American Leadership Initiative. Duncan already cares about these issues. I fully expect he will continue to champion and grow such initiatives, helping RTS make a wider contribution to communities of color. My warmest well-wishes and prayers go up for my friend Ligon, RTS, and the entire PCA family."
Thabiti Anyabwile, Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
"Congratulations to the RTS trustees and to Dr. Duncan! I have followed Ligon’s ministry with keen interest and rejoice with him in this new step. The greatest of his many qualifications for this important office is his deep love for the Lord and His church. I pray God’s rich blessing upon Ligon, his family, and Reformed Seminary."
From David B. Calhoun
Professor of Church History Emeritus
Covenant Theological seminary
St. Louis, Missouri
"There are few men who are able to combine the roles of pastor and theologian, but Ligon Duncan is one. He is highly respected both for the calibre of his contribution to theology in the Reformed tradition, and for his faithful and engaging preaching style. Although it will be difficult to imagine First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, without him as senior pastor, his new role as Chancellor of RTS will build both on his academic and church work, and will help to equip and prepare a new generation of pastors and teachers who will burn with the same passion for Christ and the same faithfulness to Scripture. All his friends in Scotland, and not least in the Free Church of Scotland, with which Ligon has been connected for many years now, will join me in wishing God's blessing upon the Chancellor-elect of RTS and pray that the Seminary will go from strength to strength as a result."
Rev Dr Iain D Campbell, Free Church of Scotland
"I've long appreciated the ministry God has committed to the Reformed Theological Seminary. The news that Ligon Duncan has now been asked to provide leadership to that dear school is a sign of God's good provision for them, and for the preservation and promotion of gospel ministry. I've known Ligon for 25 years, and have always been thankful for his kindness, knowledge of God's Word, faithfulness and perseverance. My prayers to God throughout this decision have been for God's glory and His church's good. I am satisfied that they have been answered. And for that I am thankful."
Senior Pastor, Capitol Hill Baptist Church, Washington, DC
“I could not be more thrilled with the selection of Ligon Duncan as the next Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary. Not only I have long benefited from the teaching and resources produced by RTS and its strong faculty, I also personally know many men who have been faithfully prepared for ministry through RTS, including some from my own congregation. Without a doubt, there is no one better to lead RTS over the next years than my dear friend Ligon Duncan. I know Lig to be a pastor, a scholar, a leader, and most importantly, a godly and warm-hearted Christian. This is such happy news for the Reformed community, for evangelical Christianity in North America, and for the strength and health of the church around the world.”
Kevin DeYoung, Senior Pastor, University Reformed Church (East Lansing, Michigan)
"As a graduate of RTS I am grateful to God for the decision to call Dr. Ligon Duncan as Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary. He brings significant theological insight and considerable preaching gifts to a role that will undoubtedly make its impact on that major theological institution and through it the church at large. RTS in its various campuses is well set to influence the lives and thought of a whole new generation of preachers and teachers of the Word of God and it is no small comfort to know that its future will be in safe hands. In days of both theological chaos and decline in the status of preaching it is even more important for an experienced preacher and church theologian to be in such a pivotal position. We wish both Chancellor and Seminary God's richest blessing."
Liam Goligher, Tenth Presbyterian, Philadelphia, PA
"It was C.H. Spurgeon, himself the president of a pastors' college, who once said, “the coals of orthodoxy are necessary to the fire of piety.” And a vital help in ensuring the orthodoxy of any Christian community are the leaders of that community and the place where they are trained, which, in recent days has usually been the seminary and bible college. Reformed Theological Seminary plays a vital role in the life of the PCA and a number of other Christian communities in America, and I am delighted that Dr J. Ligon Duncan, III, has been called to lead this school as her Chancellor at this critical juncture in history. I can personally attest that he combines in his ministry characteristics required of such leadership: an unswerving commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ and his gospel, a solid understanding of the Christian academic world and its unique challenges, and an extremely winsome way of relating to people. I am praying that he and his wife Anne will be a blessing to the RTS community and the churches that the seminary serves, and they, in turn, a blessing to them."
Michael A.G. Haykin
Professor of Church History & Biblical Spirituality
& Director of the Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies,
The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
"When I first met Lig Duncan many years ago, I was impressed with his intellect, knowledge of the Word, and kind demeanor. Over the years, as I have gotten to know him better, I have been humbled and inspired not only by his ability to communicate the wisdom and breadth of Scripture, but more importantly, by his courage to use his many gifts to contend for the faith in the public square. I cannot think of a more qualified person to lead the next generation, in these difficult times, as they take up the challenge of being salt and light in this culture."
Former Chairman & CEO of American Standard
Founder of Kairos Journal and Biblemesh
"Lig Duncan brings many great gifts to his new post. He is an accomplished theologian, churchman, and strategic thinker—a combination that is rare indeed. He has a realistic, sober grasp on the cultural and theological decline of our times, and yet has an infectious, positive vision for what can be accomplished. Congratulations (to Ligon and to RTS) on his appointment."
Tim Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church, New York City
“I am thrilled by the decision of the Reformed Theological Seminary trustees to call Ligon Duncan to be its next chancellor. Not only will be the seminary gain a man who has a mind eager to plumb the depths of God’s truth for its chief executive officer, but it will also have someone as its leader who has a passionate heart for God and his glory. And I am also thrilled that Ligon has agree to accept this call and pray that his sincere desire to promote God’s glory and the church’s good will bear great fruit for our generation.”
Dr. Sean Michael Lucas
Senior Minister, The First Presbyterian Church, Hattiesburg MS
"Lig Duncan has been a great friend to RUF and a strong advocate for us on many fronts. As an adjunct faculty member at Charlotte, I'm thrilled with Lig's appointment and will look forward to our working together. The theological education of our campus ministers will be in good hands."
Rod Mays, National Coordinator
Reformed University Fellowship (RUF)
Reformed Theological Seminary-Charlotte
"The election of Ligon Duncan as Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary is a cause of celebration. Personally, I am so thankful to have a colleague like Lig, who is first both friend and brother to me. I know the heart and mind of this great pastor-theologian and church historian. I know his passion and his commitment to the Christ, the Church, the Gospel, and the task of theological education. As a seminary president, I love what Ligon's election says about the future of confessional theological education. As a servant of the Church, I love what Lig's election means to Christ's church all over the world. My dear friend is now a fellow steward of theological education. Count me in as one ecstatic Baptist."
Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr., President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
"Ligon Duncan's election as chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary is a seismic move for the advance of global confessional Christianity in the 21st century. Ligon is respected across the world as both a public intellectual and as a pastoral leader. He combines the scholarly firepower of B.B. Warfield with the cultural wisdom of Francis Schaeffer and the pastoral fire of D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. He is beloved across generations and denominations not only for his gifted but because of his Christ-shaped humility and love. The election of Ligon Duncan is bad news for the empire of Satan, and good news for those who love the advance of Christ's church."
Russell D. Moore, Ph.D.
Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
Southern Baptist Convention
"RUF rejoices at God's provision for RTS in its new chancellor. Ligon Duncan's commitment to college students, both through his pastoral ministry at First Presbyterian and his chairmanship over the RUF Midsouth Committee, grants us deep reassurance that the next generation of Reformed leadership is America is in very good hands!"
Les Newsom, Area Coordinator for RUF in Alabama and the Midsouth
"I have long appreciated Ligon Duncan's commitment to classic, confessional, Reformed Christianity, combined with his desire to reach out to the broader evangelical community for the sake of the gospel. What a joy it was to hear that he is going to be chancellor of a seminary that has embodied those same values for decades, providing excellent theological education for Presbyterian and Reformed students, but also for many from our Free Will Baptist churches. His stellar leadership, his keen mind, and his heart for the gospel will make him an outstanding leader for Reformed Seminary."
Matt Pinson, president, Welch College, Nashville, Tennessee
"What a gift of grace to the wider church that Ligon Duncan should be called as Chancellor of the remarkable system of Reformed Theological Seminary schools. This decision bodes well for the ongoing depth and breadth of impact for Christ that RTS already enjoys. I can think of no one better prepared and gifted and anointed for this crucial role. God has been good to RTS and to all of us."
John Piper, Founder and Teacher for Desiring God, and Chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary.
“Congratulations to RTS on their election of Ligon as Chancellor! I am delighted, as I cannot think of anyone better for the job. His unceasing labors and balance of pastoral, familial, and ecclesiastical duties are a glowing example for us all. May the Lord greatly bless RTS, my alma mater. May Ligon lead you in sending out yet another generation of faithful pastors and missionaries into God’s worldwide harvest.”
Clay Quarterman, PhD
President, ERSU Seminary
MTW- Kiev, Ukraine
"Whilst I am saddened for First Pres to be losing their Senior Minister, I rejoiced when I heard of the appointment of my friend Dr Ligon Duncan as Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary. Why? Because Ligon is ideally suited to this post. His pastoral, preaching and seminary experience coupled with his love for and knowledge of reformed theology, as well as a truly biblical ecumenical spirit and above all a personal piety and passion for Christ and His Word, are just what RTS need in a Chancellor. Amidst the plethora of seminaries large and small, the RTS 'family' is in my view vitally important. We live in an age where a militant secularism, a confused church and a whole pack of false teachers make it all the more essential that those who are to be the under-shepherds of Christ's flock are well trained and equipped for the battle that lies ahead. The vision for RTS is not that it will provide a comfortable niche market for a limited number of inward looking 'reformed' types, but that it will be a catalyst for renewal and reformation in a world which desperately needs it. Far too often in history the church has been let down by theological training which has drifted away from the Bible resulting in the twin poisons of liberalism or legalism infecting the church. Dr Duncan is well aware of these dangers and it is my view that his understanding of the times, his pastoral experience, his wide knowledge of the church beyond his own denomination and shores, and his commitment to a robust and contemporary reformed theology will really help RTS fulfill its mission. The fact that he has a love for Scotland and Scottish theology only magnifies his usefullness in my eyes! May God grant that this appointment will have eternal significance and bring glory to Christ"
David Robertson - St Peters Free Church of Scotland, Dundee, Scotland.
Director of Solas Centre for Public Christianity.
"It rejoices the heart of all God's people to see that a ministry so distinguished, faithful, and fruitful as RTS has been will have as its next chancellor one who has been so ably gifted, so thoroughly prepared, and so ready to assume the great challenges which are ahead for the church in the coming years. Ligon Duncan is a true servant of Jesus Christ, dedicated to his wife and children, thoroughly grounded in the Holy Scriptures, well informed in the history and theology of the church, and skilled in pastoral ministry. He knows what it is to die to himself that he might live for Christ. The Christian world has long looked to him for leadership, as it has to RTS. Having him to lead the RTS ministry now is so evidently the Lord's doing and it is marvelous in our eyes."
Mark Ross, Erskine Theological Seminary
“Ligon Duncan is the ideal leader for Reformed Theological Seminary: a gifted scholar, passionate preacher, and proven leader who loves the gospel and has a deep knowledge of the history and practice of Reformed theology. His appointment at RTS holds every promise of advancing the gospel of Jesus Christ by strengthening theological education for North America and the world.”
Dr. Philip G. Ryken
"The election of J. Ligon Duncan to the RTS chancellorship is a historic occasion. Speaking from the perspective of a member of a sister denomination, this is a heartening and exciting appointment. It bodes well for RTS, the PCA, and the ongoing strength of the confessional evangelical movement. Lig is uniquely qualified for this post. He loves the church, excels at the theological task, is inspiring and easy to follow, and is unfailingly warm-hearted. I work closely with Lig for the Council on Biblical Manhood & Womanhood and count it a joy and a source of continual blessing. In coming days, I predict great things for RTS, an institution making tremendous contributions to the global promotion of the gospel. Ours is an uncertain hour culturally, but Lig is just the man for it."
Owen Strachan, Executive Director, Council on Biblical Manhood & Womanhood; Assistant Professor of Christian Theology and Church History, Boyce College
"In addition to being an exemplary pastor-theologian and an accomplished scholar, Dr. Duncan is one of the warmest and most gracious Christian gentlemen I have ever met, with a deep passion for the gospel and a contagious love for the local church. As a graduate of RTS, this influential seminary holds a special place in my heart, and I believe that by God's grace its best days are yet to come. I thank God for raising up Ligon Duncan for such a time as this!"
Justin Taylor, Senior Vice President and Publisher for Books, Crossway
"The RTS Board has chosen wisely and well in calling Ligon Duncan to be the Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary. In choosing Dr. Duncan the Board has continued the RTS tradition of seeking leaders with a heart for the Lord and the Word of God, a love for the Church, and academic prowess combined with pastoral experience. I have known Lig for decades as a friend and faculty colleague and have appreciated his ministry as a pastor, a scholar and a churchman. I pray that the Lord will bless his new leadership role at RTS."
L. Roy Taylor
Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America
Former Professor of Practical Theology RTS-Jackson
Adjunct Professor of Practical Theology RTS-Atlanta
"I am thrilled for both RTS and my dear friend by the news of his appointment as Chancellor. Having worked along side him, both at RTS and First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, I can relate from firsthand experience his combination of academic proficiency and pastoral inclination. His skill-set is prodigious, his loyalty unwavering, his commitment to truth resolute and winsome. I could not suggest a better individual for this position at this crucial time in evangelical-Reformed Christendom."
Derek W. H. Thomas
Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology, RTS Atlanta
Senior Minister, First Presbyterian Church, Columbia, SC
Editorial Director, Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals
"Dear Brother, On the occasion of the appointment of Rev Dr J. Ligon Duncan, III, as Chancellor and CEO of RTS I would like to express my pleasure at this news. Dr Duncan is well known – yes even in Australia, and I count him a friend going back quite a number of years. But more to the point he is well equipped for this new role as he brings theological acumen as well as a high profile to it. It is important that the needed funding for RTS keep coming in, but it also important that the good theological foundation continue, and that RTS continues to contribute to a renewal of the Reformed faith in the United States – and elsewhere. I believe this appointment holds every promise of positively furthering the cause near to our hearts. My very warm good wishes for this happy occasion. Yours in Christian service, Rowland S. Ward"
Presbyterian Church of Eastern Australia
Emeritus Minister, Rev Dr Rowland S. Ward
"This is a wonderful appointment . Under God's hand, Lig will be a strong, wise, good, and effective leader and I rejoice with RTS."
David F. Wells,
Distinguished Senior Research Professor
Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary