Experts on "Ministry"

Mick Boersma

  • Professor Emeritus of Christian Ministry and Leadership

Dr. Boersma oversees Talbot's pastoral training system and coordinates the seminary's placement service for current students and alumni. Having enjoyed several years of rich and effective pastoral ministry, Mick brings this expertise to the classroom and to his relationships with students. Along with his wife, Rolane, Dr. Boersma is devoted to preparing students for transitioning into congregational ministry. Their support includes student and alumni retreats, faculty mentoring opportunities, and assistance in Christian character development. Dr. and Mrs. Boersma established Talbot Support Ministries, which provides resources and encouragement to Talbot graduates. They travel throughout the U.S. and around the world to minister to alumni.

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Eddie Byun

  • Associate Professor of Christian Ministry

Dr. Eddie Byun is an associate professor of Christian Ministry at Talbot School of Theology. He studied Speech Communication at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana where he experienced his calling into pastoral ministry. Upon graduation, Byun studied at Regent College in Vancouver for his Master of Divinity degree. After graduating, he began his full-time pastoral ministry and taught at Handong Global University in Pohang, South Korea. Afterward, he was led to Sydney, Australia where he founded New Life Worship. While in Australia, Eddie completed his Doctor of Ministry in Preaching at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. In 2008, God led Eddie back to Korea to be Lead Pastor of Onnuri English Ministry where he served for seven years. While in Korea, he also planted Crossway Mission Church and taught practical theology at Torch Trinity Graduate University. He is the author of IVP’s Reader's Choice Award Winner Justice Awakening, Praying for Your Pastor, and Praying for Your Missionary. He is also the executive producer of “Save My Seoul,” which is a documentary on sex trafficking in South Korea. “Save My Seoul” won "Best Documentary" at the Asia-Pacific Film Festival.

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Octavio Javier Esqueda

  • Professor of Christian Higher Education
  • Director, Ph.D. and Ed.D. Programs in Educational Studies

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 he taught at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. 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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Kevin E Lawson

  • Professor of Educational Studies

Kevin Lawson cares deeply about strengthening the educational ministry of churches. For 11 years, he served on church staffs as a minister of Christian education. He holds degrees in Christian education, biblical studies and educational administration, and carries out research on local church educational ministry, church staff issues, theological and historical foundations of Christian education, children’s spiritual formation, and other related topics. Lawson teaches on the historical foundations of Christian education, leadership issues and educational research methods, and does ministry consultation. His recent publications include: Supervising and Supporting Ministry Staff: A Guide to Thriving Together (co-authored with Mick Boersma, 2017); Associate Staff Ministry: Thriving Personally, Professionally, and Relationally (co-authored with Mick Boersma, 2014); Infants and Children in the Church: Five Views on Theology and Ministry (co-edited with Adam Harwood, 2017), Understanding Children's Spirituality: Theology, Research, and Practice (editor, 2012) and has contributed chapters to Shaped by God: Twelve Essentials for Nurturing Faith in Children, Youth, and Adults (2010), Introducing Christian Education and Formation (2008), Nurturing Child and Adolescent Spirituality: Perspectives from the World's Religious Traditions (2006), Children's Spirituality: Christian Perspectives, Research, and Applications (2004), and multiple entries in the Encyclopedia of Christian Education (2015). His research and writing has been published in several periodicals, including Christian Education Journal, Evangelical Missions Quarterly, Religious Education, Journal of Youth Ministry, Growing Churches, The Journal for Case Teaching and two international journals. He serves as editor of the Christian Education Journal and “Christian Educators of the 20th Century Project.” He chairs the Council of Christian Colleges and Universities’ Council for Collaboration in Doctoral Education and works with the International Council for Evangelical Theological Education on issues of doctoral education development.

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Alan McMahan

  • Program Director Undergraduate Studies for Cook School of Intercultural Studies
  • Professor of Intercultural Studies

Alan McMahan has served in churches in North America and on the Pacific Rim as well as taught in the areas of missiology, church growth, leadership, organizational development and evangelism. He has been active in training undergraduate and graduate students including mid-career professionals, Bible school teachers, pastors and denominational leaders through the U.S., Canada, Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia in the effective means to develop leaders and grow churches. He maintains an active consulting service in churches and is the former President of the American Society of Church Growth. He has earned degrees from Fuller Seminary, Asbury Seminary, the Alliance Theological Seminary and Nyack College. His Ph.D. dissertation was entitled, "Training Turnaround Leaders, Systemic Approaches to Reinstate Growth in Plateaued Churches." He has served as a Vice President for the Alliance Theological Seminary, and as the Academic Dean at The King’s College in mid-town Manhattan. McMahan now works at Biola University as an Associate Professor in the School of Intercultural Studies and serves as the Department Chair for the Undergraduate Intercultural Studies Program. He is married to Terri, and has two sons.

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David Merrill

  • Assistant Professor, ISF-CTI

David Merrill and his wife first joined the Biola community in 2006 when Merrill began as a Master of Divinity student and his wife took on an administration role at Talbot’s Institute for Spiritual Formation. During his time as a student, Merrill immersed himself in the academic and communal life of the campus taking on roles varying from adjunct faculty, staff spiritual director, and resident coordinator. Merrill earned his Master of Divinity in Spiritual Formation in 2010 and Master of Theology in 2012. In 2017, he completed his doctorate in theology at Durham University, in England. He still misses those beautiful crisp morning English countryside walks to his office every day. Merrill’s thesis dealt with the spiritual theology of Thomas Traherne; exploring how beauty and desire function as central components in his theological convictions and pastoral impulse. For the past two years he has been teaching spiritual formation courses for Talbot’s core curriculum. Most recently, Merrill has helped pastor a church in Paradise, California – Paradise Evangelical Free Church – as it navigates the aftermath of the recent devastating fires there and the ongoing call of God for that city.

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Kenneth Nehrbass

  • Program Director, MA Intercultural Studies
  • Associate Professor of Intercultural Studies

Kenneth Nehrbass was a pastor before he and his wife Mendy joined Wycliffe Bible Translators in 2000. In 2002, they moved to the island of Tanna (in Vanuatu) to translate the New Testament with a team of nationals. In 2012 they moved back to the USA, and Nehrbass became assistant professor of International Studies at Belhaven University. In 2014, he moved to Biola to teach and direct the M.A. and Ph.D. Programs in intercultural studies. He continues to volunteer as a translation and anthropology consultant with SIL and the Seed Company. His research focuses on contextual theology and missiological anthropology. He and his wife have four children.

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Stanley Ng

  • Director of Engineering Programs
  • Instructor of Engineering

Stanley Ng's career has revolved around engineering and healthcare. After spending time in academic and industry research in biomedical engineering and diagnostics, Ng now serves in higher education. His passion in teaching and mentorship for the next generation of students is derived from engaging small changes for large impact in the world of engineering and healthcare. As an advisor to engineering physics students, his guidance goes beyond the classroom by connecting students with industry professionals or developing course content that best supports students in their engineering career aspirations, primarily revolving around integrating the industry design process with missional utility. In addition, he supports the various physics chemistry laboratories — a place and opportunity for students to examine the fine-tuning of God’s created physical universe. Ng has also served many years as an executive pastor.

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Victor S Rhee

  • Professor of New Testament Language and Literature

Victor Rhee specializes in Hebrews and general epistles in the New Testament. His Ph.D. dissertation focused on "The Concept of Faith in the Overall Context of the Book of Hebrews," and authored Faith in Hebrews: Analysis within the Context of Christology, Eschatology, and Ethics (Peter Lang). He also contributed articles to The New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible (Abingdon Press). He had presented papers at the Evangelical Theological Society, Korean New Testament Society and Society of Biblical Literature meetings. He also had articles published in the Journal of Biblical Literature, Bibliotheca Sacra, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Filologia Neotestamentaria and Westminster Theological Journal. Rhee also initiated the formation the study group for Asian/Asian-American scholars in the the Evangelical Theological Society, which is now known as Asian/Asian-American Consultation Group. Before coming to Talbot, he served in different Korean churches in the U.S. as senior pastor, EM (English Ministry) pastor, youth pastor, assistant pastor and minister of education. Rhee is active in teaching and preaching in Korean-American churches, and has the role of visiting and encouraging the Talbot alumni pastors in different churches in Southern California. In the past he founded the Korean Talbot Institute for Biblical Studies (KTIBS) and taught the Bible systematically to the church lay leaders in Southern California for over 12 years. Rhee also played a key role in founding the Korean Student Scholarship for Talbot School of Theology through the generous contributions of Chan-il Foundation and many other Korean Christians.

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D. Bruce Seymour

  • Adjunct, DMin

Bruce Seymour oversees the day-to-day details of Talbot’s Doctor of Ministry Program helping the pastors in the program to have an excellent experience. Seymour also teaches homiletics to M.Div. students.

Before coming to Talbot, Seymour spent 10 years in the petrochemical industry as a plant project engineer. He then served as a pastor for 24 years. All of those experiences enrich what he brings to his administrative duties and his teaching responsibilities.

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David L Talley

  • Professor, Talbot
  • Professor of Old Testament
  • NCAA Division II Faculty Athletics Representative

With varied ministry experiences, including student development, counseling, pastoring and teaching psychology and Old Testament studies, David Talley brings a blend of scholarship and practical application to his classroom instruction. He also serves as a member of the pastoral team at a local church. Talley enjoys research in the areas of Old Testament theological themes, local church ministry, and contemporary theological issues. His dissertation research on the judgment of pain in Genesis 3 continues to be a focus in his research as he formulates a perspective on Godly living in a difficult world. Talley is passionate about understanding and teaching the truths of God's Word, discipling and equipping others, and "passing on the faith" to the next generation. In 2013, he completed a survey book on the Old Testament, which blends the information of the biblical text with the transformation of the heart. His research has also been published in The New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis, Eikon (formerly the Journal of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood) and the Christian Research Journal. Talley has traveled to over 20 countries in order to partner with the international church in leadership training, especially with a focus on pastors and equipping the church to impact Muslim nations with the gospel. He is Vice-President of an organization, which provides training for underground church leaders in persecuted countries, and he serves on several mission boards.

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K. Erik Thoennes

  • Professor and Chair of Theology

Erik 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. 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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