Experts on "God"

Octavio Javier Esqueda

  • Professor of Christian Higher Education

Octavio Javier Esqueda is a professor of Christian higher education in the doctoral programs in educational studies at Talbot School of Theology at Biola University. He was born and raised in Guadalajara, México, where he graduated with honors with a Licenciatura in Latin American Literature from the University of Guadalajara as well as two additional diplomas, one on religion and society and the second on journalism. He graduated with honors from Dallas Theological Seminary with an M.A. in Christian Education and completed his doctorate (Ph.D.) in Higher Education at the University of North Texas. Before coming to Biola University in 2011, he taught at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas for over seven years. He and his wife, Angélica, have two children Darío and Salma. Dr. Esqueda has several publications on theological education, Christian higher education, and literature. Teaching is his passion and has had the opportunity to teach in several countries on different academic levels. He is an avid soccer fan.

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Greg Ganssle

  • Professor of Philosophy

Greg Ganssle has been thinking about the intersection of Christian faith and contemporary scholarship for over thirty years. He began as an undergraduate by skipping his classes and reading C.S. Lewis. After graduating from the University of Maryland in 1978, he worked in campus ministry on a variety of campuses. Hundreds of conversations with students from a wide variety of religious and philosophical perspectives drove him to a sustained self-study program. Eventually it occurred to him that he was reading philosophy. Since he had escaped college without taking a philosophy course, he decided to begin with Philosophy 101 at the age of 25. Within weeks he was hooked. Continuing to juggle his full time campus ministry responsibilities, he earned a Masters of Arts in philosophy from the University of Rhode Island (1990). He then went full time and earned his Ph.D. from Syracuse University (1995), where his dissertation on God's relation to time won a Syracuse University Dissertation Award. In addition to publishing nearly three dozen articles, chapters and reviews, Greg has edited two books, God and Time: Four Views (IVP, 2001) and God and Time: Essays on the Divine Nature (Oxford, 2002 – with David M. Woodruff). Greg is also the author of Thinking about God: First Steps in Philosophy (IVP, 2004) and A Reasonable God: Engaging the New Face of Atheism (Baylor University Press, 2009). Greg was part-time lecturer in the philosophy department at Yale for nine years, and a senior fellow at the Rivendell Institute at Yale. Greg's research interests lie in contemporary Philosophy of Religion and History of Philosophy. Greg has been married to Jeanie since 1985. They have three children, none of whom are philosophers. Although happily married, Greg has a secret crush on Jane Austen.

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R. Douglas Geivett

  • Professor of Philosophy

Dr. Geivett's interests range over the philosophy of religion, philosophical theology, epistemology, and the history of modern philosophy. He is the author of Evil and the Evidence for God and co-editor of Contemporary Perspectives on Religious Epistemology and In Defense of Miracles: A Comprehensive Case for God's Action in History. Dr. Geivett has contributed chapters to God Matters: Readings in the Philosophy of Religion; God Under Fire; The Rationality of Theism; and Does God Exist? The Craig-Flew Debate. Dr. Geivett is the former president of the Evangelical Philosophical Society. In the past, Dr. Geivett has served as minister to college students at churches in the Pacific Northwest and in Southern California and continues to speak in churches and on university campuses on subjects related to apologetics and the Christian life.

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Craig J Hazen

  • Department Director
  • Director, M.A. in Christian Apologetics
  • Director, M.A. in Science and Religion

Founder and Director of M.A. Program in Christian Apologetics and Director of M.A. Program in Science and Religion at Biola University.

Dr. Hazen is the editor of the philosophy journal, Philosophia Christi. He is also the author of the monograph The Village Enlightenment in America, the acclaimed apologetics novel Five Sacred Crossings, and dozens of articles and chapters in various books and journals. He is a recipient of the Fischer Award, the highest faculty honor at Biola and has lectured across North America and Europe on key apologetics topics—including lectures on Capitol Hill and in the White House. He is a popular church and conference speaker and former co-host of a national radio talk program.

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Joe Henderson

  • Associate Professor

Joe Henderson teaches Bible, literature, and hermeneutics. In his doctoral work at Fuller Theological Seminary, he studied hermeneutics and Old Testament literature. His dissertation on the poetry of the book of Jeremiah is the fruit of his interest in the relationship between the history of biblical interpretation and the history of literary criticism. His other interests include Robert Louis Stevenson's novels, Paul's theology, Milton's Prose, Brevard Childs' hermeneutics, Flannery O'Connor's stories, Charles Wesley's hymns, and Francis of Assisi's life. Joe is a graduate of Asbury College in Wilmore, Kentucky and Rift Valley Academy in Kijabe, Kenya. He and his wife Conchie served at Rift Valley Academy as dorm parents for fifth- and sixth-grade girls. Now they are the grateful parents of Kip, William and Laurel.

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Clay Jones

  • Associate Professor of Christian Apologetics

Formerly hosted Contend for Truth, a call-in nationally syndicated talk radio program. On his program he debated many people over eight years including John Cobb, Jr.; a professor of Buddhism; Jamal Badawi, Islamic Information Institute; a Muslim cleric; Lee Holzinger, Church of Scientology; Mormons; Jehovah’s Witness Greg Stafford; Dallas Blanchard, RCRC; Peta representatives; a euthanasia advocate; a secular humanist, Rep. Loretta Sanchez; KFI talk show host Bill Handle; Jimmy Creech, SoulForce; Bruce Ware; R. C. Sproul, Jr.; Robert Morey; R. Scott Clark; and a KJV only advocate. Dr. Jones was the executive director of Simon Greenleaf University (now Trinity Law School) has been on the pastoral staff of two large churches; has authored apologetic software as well as encyclopedia and journal articles; is writing a book, Why God Allows Evil, and speaks widely on that subject. Find him on the web at www.clayjones.net

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Kevin Alan Lewis

  • Associate Professor of Theology and Law

Dr. Lewis specializes in the topics of systematic and polemical theology, theology and law integration, jurisprudence, and Christian apologetics. He is the Founder and Director of the Evangelical Legal Society, an organization dedicated to the task of restoring the theological foundations of law and justice in society and providing Christians with the resources necessary to do law, justice, and public policy from a foundation of evangelical theology. Dr. Lewis is an active lecturer at churches, colleges, and conferences and has appeared on several radio and television shows, addressing a variety of topics.

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Robert G Lister

  • Associate Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies

Dr. Lister joined the faculty of the Talbot School of Theology in 2006. His primary research interests currently lie in the areas of Theology Proper, Christology, and Sanctification—doctrines that all fused together at the hub of his doctoral dissertation on divine impassibility. Dr. Lister sees his teaching role as both academic and pastoral in nature—a role that occupies a place outside as well as inside the classroom. He cares deeply about his students, and desires that they know God better, so that ultimately they might love Him more passionately and follow Jesus more devotedly.

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John E McKinley

  • Associate Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies

Dr. McKinley has focused on the doctrines of Jesus Christ and sanctification. He enjoys teaching broadly across all the topics of systematic theology. Dr. McKinley and his wife have three children. They are active in their church, Calvary Chapel La Mirada. Previously, they served together in the inner city ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ in Inglewood, CA, and the youth ministry of a rural church in Floyd Knobs, IN. Dr. McKinley has also competed internationally as a member of the U.S. National Men’s Cycling Team, and still rides regularly for fitness and relaxation

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J.P. Moreland

  • Distinguished Professor of Philosophy

J. P. Moreland is Distinguished Professor of philosophy at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University in La Mirada, California where he has taught for 25 years.He has authored, edited, or contributed papers to ninety-five books, including Does God Exist? (Prometheus), Universals (McGill-Queen’s), Consciousness and the Existence of God (Routledge) and Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology (Blackwell).He has also published over 85 articles in journals such as Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, American Philosophical Quarterly, Australasian Journal of Philosophy, MetaPhilosophy, Philosophia Christi, Religious Studies, and Faith and Philosophy.He has also published 120 articles in magazines and newspapers.

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Ashish J Naidu

  • Associate Professor of Theology

Dr. Naidu's interests are in the areas of historical and systematic theology, particularly in exploring the historical-theological foundations of the Christian faith. Besides contributing to various publications and regularly presenting at academic societies, he relishes teaching theology enriched by insights from the great tradition of historic Christianity. Dr. Naidu desires to serve the church by assisting it to advance from the knowledge of sacred Scripture to the knowledge of sacred doctrine for the practical Christian life that is deeply committed to glorifying God. He is married to Sabita and they have two delightful children named Sharon and Nathan. Dr. Naidu is an ordained minister and has served in various capacities in the church, including preaching, teaching, pastoral care, and evangelism-discipleship ministries in Asia, North America, and Europe.

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Ryan Peterson

  • Assistant Professor of Theology

Dr. Peterson’s goal as a professor is to help students grow in their knowledge and love of God through active participation in the church’s theological task. He teaches systematic theology with a commitment to recovering the theological and spiritual insights of the Christian tradition for the sake of contemporary appropriation. Dr. Peterson’s research interests lie in the areas of theological anthropology and theological method, including the theological interpretation of Scripture. His current projects include a book on the imago Dei (the subject of his doctoral dissertation) and a co-authored volume on the nature of theological language.

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Joshua Smith

  • Assistant Professor

Joshua Smith is very pleased to join the Torrey Honors Institute at Biola. He brings a wide range of experience in the instruction of literature and composition. He received his B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles in American literature and culture. He received both his M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Southern California. His research is in American literature, where he specializes in the nineteenth century, the American West, popular culture, media and race. As an ordained minister, he has participated in pastoral and short-term missions ministry at his local church for several years. Joshua is also a professional speaker and saxophone player. Animated, humorous, thought-provoking and explosive, he engages students with a personable and inspirational teaching style. Joshua and his wife Marsee have two boys, Josué and Angelo.

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Kyle Strobel

  • Assistant Professor, Institute of Spiritual Formation

Dr. Kyle Strobel teaches spiritual theology for Talbot’s Institute for Spiritual Formation and Spiritual Formation Focus programs. His areas of interest include systematic theology, Jonathan Edwards, spiritual formation, and prayer. He writes both popular and academic books and articles, having published in the Harvard Theological Review, Journal of Spiritual Formation & Soul Care, and Relevant Magazine.

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Michael Thigpen

  • Associate Professor of Old Testament and Semitics

Michael Thigpen enjoys teaching and writing on a wide variety of topics in the Old Testament. His special areas of interest are prophetic literature, God’s motives, and the theology of work and economics in the Old Testament. Thigpen currently serves as the Executive Director of the Evangelical Theological Society. Prior to his appointment as Executive Director in 2009, he taught Old Testament and Hebrew at the undergraduate level. Thigpen has extensive pastoral experience, having served most recently as pastor at the J-Town campus of Sojourn Community Church in Louisville, KY. He is the author of Divine Motive in the Old Testament: A Comprehensive Survey and Analysis and the iVocab series of language aids for Hebrew, Greek, and Syriac. In addition to his work with Talbot and ETS, Thigpen serves as Lecturer at Munster Bible College in Cork, Ireland.

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K. Erik Thoennes

  • Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies
  • Chair, Biblical & Theological Studies Theology Department

Dr. Thoennes is committed to teaching biblical and systematic theology so that he and his students love God and people more fully. He strives to make the necessary connections between the study of theology, obedience to Jesus, and fulfilling the Great Commission. He has taught theology and evangelism at the college and seminary levels for several years and is a frequent guest speaker at churches, conferences, and retreats, in addition to co-pastoring a local church. Dr. Thoennes has received the University award for faculty excellence and professor of the year. His research interests include godly jealousy, the atonement, the exclusivity of Christ, and theology of culture.

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Thaddeus John Williams

  • Assistant Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies

Dr. Williams loves enlarging students' understanding and enjoyment of God while teaching Theology 1 and 2 courses at Biola University. He also teaches History of Atheism, Introduction to Philosophy, and Biblical Literature in the secular college context. He has taught theology internationally, including seminaries in Nepal and Francis Schaeffer's L'Abri ministries in Switzerland and Holland. Dr. Williams is a frequent guest speaker at churches and conferences, in addition to serving as a teaching pastor at a local church. His academic works include Love, Freedom, and Evil (Rodopi, 2011), used in seminaries around the world and currently being translated to German, and his recent popular publication, The Exchange (AIMBooks, 2012). His research interests include the Trinity, divine and human agency, dialogue with atheists and theology of culture.

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