SBC agency says Moore’s job requires ‘speaking prophetically both to our culture and to our Convention.’

Russell Moore was just doing his job, according to his agency’s governing board.

But the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) still offered his second attempt at an apology for “my own role” in the continued division among Southern Baptists in the wake of the 2016 election.

Today’s statement released by the ERLC executive committee and Moore defends his conduct, including his controversial messaging around President Donald Trump.

The ERLC leaders praised Moore for speaking “with clarity and conviction” on ethical issues including “religious liberty, racial reconciliation, character in public office, and a Christian understanding of sexuality.” However, the committee acknowledged that fellow Christians “can disagree on delivery, tactics, and approach,” and decided that “many of the criticisms levied against Dr. Moore fall into these categories.”

A week ago, Moore met with denominational leader Frank Page over an investigation into numerous complaints regarding the ERLC. The criticism centers around Moore’s vocal opposition to Trump and his campaign, his characterization of Trump’s Christian supporters, and whether such messaging extended beyond the role of the ERLC president.

Moore reiterated and clarified the apology he shared in December, but ultimately stood by his positions.

“I cannot go back and change time, and I cannot apologize for my underlying convictions,” said Moore, referencing the significance of speaking out for sexual morality and racial reconciliation. “But I can—and do—apologize for failing to distinguish between people who shouldn’t have been in the same category with …

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