Writings on Christianity

My Primary Theological Influences and Teachers

Here’s the theological influences and teachers who have had the biggest impact on me (after God and the Bible!):

1. Tim Keller (gospel centrality and preaching)

2. John Piper (reformed theology and Christian hedonism)

3. D.A. Carson (exegesis and biblical theology)

4. Mark Driscoll (reformed theology, cultural engagement, and ministry practice)

5. Joe Thorn/Martyn Lloyd Jones/Dick Lucas/Vaughn Roberts (preaching)

6. Bonhoeffer/Steve Timmis and Tim Chester (community)

7. Douglas Moo/Daniel Block/Gordon Fee (exegetical technique)

8. G.K. Beale (biblical theology and exegesis)

9. Puritans (Owen, Sibbes, Baxter, Bunyan, Brooks)

10. Reformers (Luther, Calvin)

11. Gospel Coalition (modern topics and ministry questions)

12. Wheaton College Graduate School (evangelical academic exposure to exegesis and theology)

13. C.S. Lews/G.K. Chesterton/Francis Schaeffer (thinking and apologetics)

14. Wayne Grudem and Michael Horton (systematic theology)

Who are your biggest theological influences and teachers?

By Tom Schmidt

Christian, husband of Rach, Church Planter,musician,

4 replies on “My Primary Theological Influences and Teachers”

Great post Tom! It was great to learn about your influences. What a neat idea to share.

I’ll share some of my influences. I noticed we have quite a few similar ones, cool!

In my early years as a Christian, I was very much influenced by Francis Schaeffer and C.S. Lewis. So I’d say these 2 writers had the most impact on helping me to cultivate a Christian worldview.

My first exposure to Reformed theology was from theologians like R.C. Sproul, John Gerstner, J.I. Packer and James Montgomery Boice. Also need to mention Michael Scott Horton.

My interest in church history was sparked by writers like John Woodbridge, Mark Noll, Roland Bainton, Earle Cairns and Bruce Shelley. For studying the Puritans, I benefited a lot from reading David Martyn Lloyd-Jones. For studying New Testament history, I benefitted greatly from reading F.F. Bruce.

My interest in historical theology in particular was sparked by writers like Alister McGrath, Donald Bloesch and William Placher. Also need to mention Louis Berkhof.

For apologetics, there are so many influences, but I’ll name a few: Schaeffer, Lewis, Ravi Zacharias, Cornelius Van Til, G.K. Chesterton, Norman Geisler, Lee Strobel, Hugh Ross, William Lane Craig.

For great writing in general about Christianity as it relates to ourselves as well as to the culture, probably my favorite writers are Phil Yancey, Chuck Colson and A.W. Tozer. Also need to mention John Piper.

I can’t neglect to mention the great professors I had at Moody Bible Institute, as well as the great preachers I’ve sat under for so many years; first under Bill Hybels for about 17 years, then pastor Joe for the last 8 years. As amazing and gifted as Hybels is, I think pastor Joe is a better preacher.

Finally, my Christian heroes are Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and William Wilberforce. In the early 90’s, I even wrote a letter to the now deceased Mr. Solzhenitsyn when he was still living in Vermont, before he returned to Russia after his 2 decade exile. I never received a reply, but that’s okay; he’s still one of my favorite writers and all-time heroes.

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