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John C. Holbert

Columnist

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John C. Holbert was born in Indiana, raised in Arizona, and educated in Iowa and Texas, receiving a Ph.D. in the Hebrew Bible in 1975. He has been a local church pastor in Louisiana, professor of religion at Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth, and was Lois Craddock Perkins Professor of Homiletics at Perkins School of Theology, where he joined the faculty in 1979. He retired from this faculty position in May, 2012. John is married to Diana, a retired minister of the United Methodist Church. They have two children: a son, Darius, and a daughter, Sarah. John has extensive vocal solo experience, having sung in musicals, opera, and oratorio. Darius has sung with the Texas Boys' Choir, and is now a studio musician in Los Angeles, writing for film and TV. He and John have written an opera, based on the book of Job, entitled “Job’s Truth.” Sarah lives in Los Angeles where she works for the ABC Channel. John has authored eleven books and many articles in scholarly and church journals. He was the editor for the Psalms and Canticles material of the 1989 United Methodist Hymnal. He has also served as Interim Senior Minister of two large United Methodist churches, 1st UMC in Fort Worth in the Fall of 1994 and 1st UMC, Dallas, in the spring of 1997. He has preached and taught in over 1000 churches in 40 states and 20 countries. In 2007, he was named an Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor at Southern Methodist University. His first novel, King Saul, was published in 2014.

Opening The Old Testament

A Covenant for All: Reflections on Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16

With a God like this, none of us is past our day; this sort of God still has something for each of us, in spite of our doubts and cynicism, despite our biting laughter of despair. Read More »

God's Bow in the Clouds: Reflections on Genesis 9:8-17

God's promise of care for the cosmos invites us to align ourselves with that good environmental work. Read More »

The Occasional Danger of Trusting a Prophet: Reflections for Transfiguration Sunday

When preaching or prophesying, should we not all carefully assess what we are told to be words from YHWH, since they are after all pouring out of the mouth of one who is all too human? Read More »

An Answer to a Hard Question? Reflections on Isaiah 40:21-31

A rich and continual questioning of the ways of God is my way to stay close to God, to hear what God has for me to do and be. Read More »

How to Evaluate a Prophet: Reflections on Deuteronomy 18:15-20 (21-22)

When a prophetic word remains empty, unrelated to the powerful love and challenge of YHWH that is shown throughout the Hebrew Bible, then it is plainly not YHWH's word. Read More »

Prophet Gone Bad: Reflections on Jonah 3:1-5

Whenever we read the Bible and use it to exclude, deny, and reject living creatures of God, there is Jonah. Read More »

Recent Articles

A Covenant for All: Reflections on Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16

With a God like this, none of us is past our day; this sort of God still has something for each of us, in spite of our doubts and cynicism, despite our biting laughter of despair. Read More »

God's Bow in the Clouds: Reflections on Genesis 9:8-17

God's promise of care for the cosmos invites us to align ourselves with that good environmental work. Read More »

The Occasional Danger of Trusting a Prophet: Reflections for Transfiguration Sunday

When preaching or prophesying, should we not all carefully assess what we are told to be words from YHWH, since they are after all pouring out of the mouth of one who is all too human? Read More »

An Answer to a Hard Question? Reflections on Isaiah 40:21-31

A rich and continual questioning of the ways of God is my way to stay close to God, to hear what God has for me to do and be. Read More »

How to Evaluate a Prophet: Reflections on Deuteronomy 18:15-20 (21-22)

When a prophetic word remains empty, unrelated to the powerful love and challenge of YHWH that is shown throughout the Hebrew Bible, then it is plainly not YHWH's word. Read More »

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