Michael A. Cox was born in an orphanage in Athens, Greece, in 1959 to an unwed mother of Greek ancestry. Immediately placed in the care of the orphanage, he was adopted at the age of three months by a Navy serviceman and his wife, Thomas and Faye Cox, both from Porter, Oklahoma, stationed in Morocco at the time. Michael was soon brought to the United States and naturalized as a citizen. Most of his early years growing up were spent in Tulsa and Muskogee, Oklahoma. He gave his life to Christ just before his eighth birthday in January 1967.
Licensed to preach in 1983 and ordained in 1984, he became Senior Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Pryor June 1, 2008. Dr. Cox came to First Baptist Church of Pryor from West Lynchburg Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia, where he served from 2003 to 2008. He has also served as Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Inola, Oklahoma, Lakeview Southern Baptist Church in Skiatook, Oklahoma, First Baptist Church of Boynton, Oklahoma, Oak Street Baptist Church in Cushing, Oklahoma, and Trinity Baptist Church in Keefeton, Oklahoma. Moreover, he has preached an evangelistic crusade in Dominica, West Indies, under the auspices of the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, as well as a number of Bible conferences and revivals in Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Texas.
In addition to his pastoral duties, he has served as an Adjunct Professor of Evangelism for Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s Tulsa extension and as a Doctor of Ministry Field Supervisor for Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has also served as President of the Pryor Church League Softball; as Moderator and Vice-Moderator of the Craig-Mayes Baptist Association; as a member of the Southern Baptist Convention Committee on Committees; as Moderator and Vice-Moderator of the Lynchburg Baptist Association; as Co-President of the Pastors’ Conference, Resolutions Committee member, and Personnel Committee member of the Tulsa Metro Baptist Association; and as President of the Inola Ministerial Alliance.
He is a graduate of Muskogee High School (1977) in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and a graduate of Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies (1986). He also holds Master of Divinity with Biblical Languages (1989) and Doctor of Ministry (2000) degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, with an emphasis in his doctoral work on biblical hermeneutics, especially as applied to New Testament interpretation and Christian apologetics, done under the faculty supervision of the late Southern Baptist theologian and philosopher John P. Newport.
Dr. Cox’s preaching focuses on competent biblical exposition utilizing the grammatical-historical hermeneutic taught by Southern Baptist seminaries and universities and is built upon sound exegesis. His sermons are a blend of preaching and teaching, routinely stressing evangelism, discipleship, repentance, and stewardship. He is committed both to Old and New Testament Bible-book exposition, with particular emphasis on the New Testament, having preached, exegeted, and translated through twenty-three New Testament books and having preached through eighteen Old Testament books. He also addresses important topics such as why there are so many different denominations, worldviews, just war theory, the creation-evolution debate, alcohol and drug prevention, anti-gambling, the sanctity of human life, the virgin birth of Christ, the virtuous woman, spiritual discernment, spiritual gifts, and the inspiration and authority of Scripture.
His writing accomplishments include one book, Not One Little Child: A Biblical Critique of Calvinism, published in 2009 by CrossBooks, his copyrighted Doctor of Ministry Professional Project, “A Pastoral Ministry Approach for Developing a Biblical Response to Channeling and Its Principal Tenets,” two works posted on the website of the North American Mission Board, “A Closer Look at New Age Channeling: An Overview,” and “A New Age Glossary,” and an article in the October 18, 2007 edition of the Virginia Baptist state paper, Religious Herald, entitled “Imprecatory Praying: Is Invoking a Curse a Valid Part of Prayer?” Additionally, he has a number of other articles posted on the First Baptist Church website at www.pryorfbc.org, using the "Resources" link above, as well as an unpublished manuscript entitled, “A Practical and Homiletical Examination of the Book of Zephaniah.”
He married his high school sweetheart, Joyce McConnell, December 16, 1977. She has been very active in women’s and children’s ministries as well as adult choir. Mike and Joyce have two sons, Michael, Jr. and Matthew, and three grandchildren, Blakeley, Boston, and Sailor.
Michael, Jr., a Broadcast Journalism graduate of Oklahoma State University and sales account manager for Stough Tool, lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with his wife, Kassi (Lea) Cox, who is also a graduate of Oklahoma State University and was a Union Public Schools elementary school teacher until deciding to be a stay-at-home mom. They have two daughters, Blakeley and Sailor, and one son, Boston. Michael, Jr. and his wife are members of First Baptist Church of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, but also attend First Baptist Church of Pryor some as well.
Matthew, too, is a graduate of Oklahoma State University where he was a University Studies major with an emphasis on wildlife management, range management, and communications. He and his wife, Tiffany (Epps) Cox, a graduate of Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, live in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, and have a daughter on the way. Matthew is a sales account manager for Dover Artificial Lift Systems, a company specializing in submersible lift systems for the oil and gas drilling industry. He and Tiffany are members of First Baptist Church of Pryor, Oklahoma. He is also a professional musician, playing lead guitar for different bands, including the FBC Pryor praise band.
Dr. Mike's recreational passion is whitetail deer hunting, especially with a bow and arrow, which his dad introduced to him when he was nine. His favorite color is camouflage! He is also an avid bass and crappie fisherman. Additionally, he has been coaching the First Baptist Church of Pryor’s men’s softball team since 2010. The men’s team won the USSSA Church League State Tournament in 2013 and was NSA Church League State Tournament runner up in 2014.