Clarence Sexton Net Worth:

Clarence Sexton, a distinguished pastor and educator, made his mark as Temple Baptist Church’s pastor and founder and president of The Crown College. Born on October 10, 1948, in Selma, Alabama, and raised in Maryville, Tennessee, his journey reflects a profound commitment to religious education and spirituality. His influence extends beyond the pulpit, shaping the contours of religious instruction and community engagement, contributing significantly to the discourse on Clarence Sexton’s net worth and enduring legacy.

This article aims to unravel the facets of Clarence Sexton’s life, from his early years to his rise to prominence within the religious community. By examining his contributions, personal philosophy, and the controversies he navigated, we gain insights into the forces that have shaped his teachings and legacy. The narrative also delves into Clarence Sexton’s age, height, and the impact these elements have had on his career trajectory, offering a comprehensive overview of a figure who has left an indelible mark on the fabric of religious education.

Early Life and Education

Clarence Sexton’s formative years were marked by significant events and achievements that laid the foundation for his future religious education and ministry endeavours. Born in Selma, Alabama, in 1948, his early life was characterized by frequent relocations, culminating in settling in Maryville, Tennessee, at the tender age of eight. This period of transition was further complicated by his parents’ divorce when he was twelve, followed by his father’s death two years later. Amidst these challenges, Sexton’s mother, Ruby Lee Sexton, emerged as a pivotal figure, working tirelessly as a single parent to raise him and his siblings.

  • Academic Achievements and Personal Milestones:
    1. Christian Conversion: At fourteen, Sexton embraced Christianity, a decision that would profoundly shape his life’s trajectory.
    2. Education: His academic journey was distinguished by a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee, an Associates of Arts degree from Hiawassee College, and advanced degrees including a Masters of Religious Education and a Doctorate of Ministry.
    3. Marriage: Sexton’s personal life found its cornerstone when he married Evelyn Rogers Sexton, whom he met during high school at Everett High School, on February 15, 1967.
  • Early Ministry Work: Upon answering God’s call at a tent revival in 1967, Sexton embarked on his religious career at the Oak Street Baptist Church in Maryville, Tennessee. His commitment to ministry was further solidified through his role as pastor of Greenback Memorial Baptist Church from 1969 to 1972, a period during which he completed his Masters of Religious Education.

Rise to Prominence

Clarence Sexton’s journey to prominence began in earnest in 1969 when he took up the role of pastor at Greenback Memorial Baptist Church at the young age of twenty-one. His dedication and innovative approaches to ministry quickly became evident. Key highlights of his rise include:

  • Strategic Ministry Initiatives:
    1. Bus Ministries: Initiated at Calvary Baptist Church and Highland Park Baptist Church, these ministries significantly increased church attendance, with the Highland Park initiative bringing over two thousand people each Sunday.
    2. Bible Club Ministries: Launched in local public schools, these clubs were part of Sexton’s vision to extend religious education beyond church walls.
  • Educational Contributions:
    • The Crown College: Founded in 1991, it started with no faculty or students and has since grown to host over 900 students from more than forty states and several foreign countries. The college now includes the Curtis Hutson Center for Local Church Ministries and the Crown School of Trades and Technology, highlighting Sexton’s commitment to a comprehensive religious education.
  • Church Growth and Expansion:
    • Temple Baptist Church: Under Sexton’s leadership since 1988, the church not only expanded its physical footprint to over 130 acres but also grew its congregation from less than 500 to over 800 members. This growth was supported by the acquisition of fifteen new buses and the expansion of church facilities, illustrating Sexton’s faith-driven approach to ministry and community engagement.

These efforts underscore Clarence Sexton’s holistic approach to ministry. He combines traditional pastoral roles with innovative educational initiatives and community outreach, setting the stage for his lasting impact on religious education and church growth.

Contributions to Religious Education

Clarence Sexton’s contributions to religious education are vast and impactful, reflecting his dedication to spreading knowledge and fostering spiritual growth. His initiatives have shaped the landscape of religious education and left a lasting legacy.

  • Literary Contributions:
    • Authored over 100 books and booklets, including notable titles such as ‘The Life of David’, ‘The Way Back to God’, and ‘Marriage By Divine Design’, aimed at aiding pastors and Christian workers in their church and personal Bible study.
    • Established Crown Christian Publications and, platforms for distributing educational materials.
  • Educational Initiatives:
    • Founded The Crown College in 1991, which now hosts over 900 students from more than forty states and several foreign countries.
    • Initiated the Christian Heritage Trust, leading to the planting of over 500 churches globally.
    • Created four summer youth camps and the Way of Life Bible College, enhancing educational opportunities for young Christians.
  • Philosophy on Christian Education:
    • Advocated for a revolution in Christian education, emphasizing the sharing of knowledge and understanding God’s design for man.
    • Believed in the importance of a progressive understanding of God, facilitated through Christian education that focuses on the conscience, critical thinking, and the nature of truth.

Controversies and Criticisms

While marked by significant contributions to religious education, Clarence Sexton’s career has also been shadowed by controversies and criticisms that have sparked debates and concerns within and beyond the religious community he serves. These issues range from accusations of promoting harmful ideologies to alleged abusive behaviour, each contributing to a complex narrative surrounding his legacy.

  • Controversial Statements and Ideologies:
    • Accused of fostering abuse and discrimination, particularly against women, calling the feminist movement “perilous.”
    • Supported controversial figures within the IFB movement, including Jack Hyles, amidst accusations of sexual misconduct.
    • Promoted extreme and exclusionary ideologies, preaching against LGBTQ+ individuals, feminism, and progressive values.
  • Allegations of Abuse:
    • Multiple individuals have come forward with stories of abuse within the IFB movement and at institutions associated with Sexton.
    • Bethany Foeller Leonard and Jennifer Lyell shared experiences of sexual and emotional abuse, highlighting issues within Crown College and Temple Baptist Church.
    • Former employees and church members, like Landon Porter, accused Sexton of using fear tactics and patriarchal values to control and manipulate.
  • Public Backlash and Criticism:
    • Plans to include controversial figures in a memorial garden led to significant public outcry and a petition with almost 50,000 signatures.
    • Associated with The Sword of the Lord, promoting materials linked to scandal-ridden figures.
    • Criticized for a KJV-exclusive position, raising concerns about doctrinal strictness and lack of discernment.

These controversies underscore a broader discussion about leadership, accountability, and the impact of religious teachings on communities and individuals.

Personal Philosophy and Teachings

Clarence Sexton’s teachings and personal philosophy are deeply rooted in integrity, faith, and the importance of a personal relationship with God. He underscores these values through various avenues:

  • Core Beliefs and Practices:
    • Upholding integrity in all aspects of life.
    • Believing in the power and word of God.
    • The significance of not complaining but rather embracing life’s challenges with faith.
  • Personal Relationship with God:
    • Encouragement for individuals to seek a personal encounter with God, beyond inherited beliefs.
    • The exemplification of Joshua and Moses, highlighting how personal relationships with God prepared them for leadership.
    • The critical role of personal testimony in one’s faith journey.
  • Principles of Christian Living:
    • The necessity of holiness, truthfulness, sincerity, and honesty among Christians.
    • Promotion of the “Irreducible Body of Truth” for unity in evangelism, allowing for diversity in non-essentials.
    • Emphasis on Soul Liberty, the Bible as the sole authority, the priesthood of believers, and the autonomy of the local church.

Through his teachings, Sexton aims to rectify modern societal notions of independence and lack of accountability. He advocates for a community-oriented approach within the church, as detailed in his book Believe and Belong. This approach covers essential topics such as baptism, the Lord’s Supper, and the importance of the Great Commission, guiding believers toward a more interconnected and accountable Christian life.

Legacy and Net Worth

According to this source here, Clarence Sexton’s estimated net worth was $5 million. He had amassed this fortune over the years through his service as a pastor at Temple Baptist Church

  • Public Viewing and Memorial Service Details:
    • Body in State: December 20, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Rotunda, The Crown College Campus
    • Family Reception: December 20, 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 6:45 p.m., Auditorium
    • Memorial Service: December 20, 7:00 p.m.

Sexton’s life was rich with family connections, leaving behind his wife Evelyn, two sons, six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. His final days were marked by illness leading to a brain injury, culminating in his passing. Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs and GOP Chairman Buddy Burkhardt have publicly acknowledged Sexton’s significant contributions, underscoring the void his departure creates in the community.

  • Community Impact:
    • Glenn Jacobs: Highlighted Sexton’s legacy of service.
    • Buddy Burkhardt: Commended Sexton as a paramount Christian figure in Knox County

Despite the sorrow of his passing, Sexton’s written works and the institutions he developed stand as a testament to his dedication to spreading faith and education. His influence, spanning over five decades, continues through his extensive literary contributions and the ongoing work of The Crown College and Temple Baptist Church.


Clarence Sexton epitomized a dedication to faith, education, and community upliftment throughout his life, leaving an indelible mark on religious education and pastoral ministry. His journey from a challenging childhood to becoming a prominent figure in religious circles showcases personal resilience and a steadfast commitment to sharing the gospel and fostering spiritual growth among his followers. The institutions he established, particularly The Crown College, and his literary contributions are vital resources for Christian education and serve as a lasting testament to his vision.

As we reflect on the legacy of Clarence Sexton, it is essential to appreciate the complexity of his impact, acknowledging both the controversies that challenged his ministry and his profound positive influence on his community and beyond. His life’s work underscores the power of faith and education in shaping individuals’ lives and building stronger, more connected communities. The principles Sexton championed—integrity, the importance of a personal relationship with God, and the value of community engagement—continue to resonate, guiding future generations toward a deeper understanding of their faith and their role within the broader tapestry of society.


What is Clarence Sexton’s recent status?
Clarence Sexton passed away on December 12 after dedicating much of his life to the faith community in East Tennessee. He was notably recognized as the founder of Crown College, a Christian institution in Powell, Tennessee, founded in 1991.

Can you provide some background on Dr. Clarence Sexton?
Dr. Clarence Sexton was renowned for his leadership as the pastor of the Temple Baptist Church from 1988 to 2023. He was also the founder and president of The Crown College in Knoxville, TN, from 1991 to 2023. His contributions to the faith community are significant, with Crown College graduates establishing numerous churches and extension sites across Texas, Montana, England, and Nepal.