In 1906 D. L. Moody (Moody Publishing, Moody Bible College) believed the only way the world could be evangelized was through the mobilizing of laymen. Moody founded the International Laymen’s Movement. On May 16, 1907, preceding the Southern Baptist Convention’s opening session, Annie Armstrong’s cousin, Joshua Levering of Maryland, and Governor W. J. Northern of Georgia, called a meeting to discuss how Baptist men in the convention could be involved. From this meeting came the Baptist Laymen’s Missionary Movement. In 1926, Southern Baptists involved in the Laymen’s Missionary Movement created the Baptist Brotherhood of the South. In 1950 the Baptist Brotherhood of the South became the Brotherhood Commission of the SBC, with offices in Memphis, Tennessee. In 1954 the Royal Ambassador movement, which had been sponsored and promoted by WMU since its birth as an organization, was moved from WMU to the Brotherhood Commission.
At the local church level, the Brotherhood is an organized group of men dedicated to a fellowship that seeks to help the church perform the task of teaching missions to men and boys, engaging them in mission action, and leading them to support world missions through prayer and giving.