From 2004 to August 2016, I served at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas as the Dean of the School of Theology. In August of 2016 I became the founding Dean of the new School of Preaching at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I am also the Distinguished Professor of Preaching, Director of the Center for Expository Preaching, and I hold the George W. Truett Chair of Pastoral Ministry at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.
I came to Christ as my Savior at the age of nine and responded to God’s call to preach as a junior in High School. I attended The Criswell College in Dallas (1978 graduate), where I also later taught adjunctively (1985-1998) and full time (1998-2004) as the W. A. Criswell Chair of Preaching.
My first church staff position was Minister of Students at the newly founded Prestonwood Baptist Church in Dallas in 1977, where I served for five years while completing college and seminary. Prestonwood was founded in January, 1977 and I came on staff as the first staff member in February. One of the most exciting things in my life was being in on the ground floor of a new church plant.
I was married to Sherri for 37 years, who died of cancer in 2015. We had four children: Jeremy, Jared, Melody, and Kali. Jared’s wife is Joelle and they have five wonderful children: Judah, Lydia, Hudson, Ishmael, and Maranatha. Kali, and her husband Justin Geddie, married in December, 2013. God in his grace brought Kate Finley into my life and we were married in October, 2016.
I earned the MDiv degree from Southwestern in 1981, and had the privilege of serving on the Board of Trustees at SWBTS for 12 years, including serving as Vice-chairman from 2001-2003 and Chairman of the Board from 2003-2004.
In February of 1982 I was called to serve as pastor of the newly formed Audelia Road Baptist Church in Dallas, where I served for sixteen years. During those years, God did some amazing things with our people via church planting and mission trips around the world. My first mission trip was to Mexico City in 1990. Thirty of our people went on that trip and 8 new churches were planted. Today, the president of e3 Ministries, Curtis Hail, and Vice-president Mike Jorgensen, were both members of my church at the time on that trip. God called both of them, along with many others of our members into full-time missions, some of whom work for e3 today, while others are serving the Lord as pastors or in various missions organizations around the world.
I began my Ph.D. work in 1982 and graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1987 with a Ph.D. in Humanities and a major in Linguistics. My focal point of study was discourse analysis and how I might use the principles of linguistics in exegesis and expository preaching. You might check out my 1-3 John: Fellowship in the Family, a series of 22 expository sermons on 1-3 John which is informed by my linguistic training. Here I try to model “text-driven” preaching. You might also consult my commentary on Hebrews in the New American Commentary Series (published 2010) which analyses the text using principles of discourse analysis.
In 1999, I became the interim pastor at Macarthur Boulevard Baptist Church in Irving, TX and then pastor in June of 2000 – December, 2004.
My hobbies are reading, writing, and preaching. I love books and have collected a personal theological library of more than 25,000 volumes. My favorite book in the Bible is Hebrews. I have written an extensive commentary in the NAC series on Hebrews (2010), as well as The Lukan Authorship of Hebrews (2010), an expansion of my Ph.D. dissertation where I argue that Luke wrote Hebrews. (I argue that Luke was Jewish and wrote Luke-Acts to a former Jewish High Priest named Theophilus who served in Jerusalem, according to Josephus, from 37-41 A.D.! My teaser so you will read the book!)
I have recently written a new work entitled The Extent of the Atonement: A Historical and Critical Review published by B&H Academic. I am also beginning to work on a commentary on Job, a volume in the Christ-Centered Exposition series published by B&H.
I love preaching! I have been preaching since I was 16 years old. Once I remember leaving a high-school baseball game early on a Friday late afternoon because I had to go preach a youth revival. I have taught preaching from the B.A. to the Ph.D. level since the late 1980’s. I am especially interested in fostering “text-driven preaching” and am the co-editor of a book by that title. One of the thrills of my life is getting to teach seminary students the art and craft of preaching.
I am the Editor-in-Chief of the new preaching website preachingsource.com. This site is a one-stop shop for all things preaching. Check it out!
Thank you for dropping by my site and I hope you will be a frequent visitor!
David L. Allen