Dr. Mark Wilson

Dr. Mark Wilson

Program Director

Dr. Mark Wilson is the founder and director of the Asia Minor Research Center in Antalya, Turkey, a country in which he and his wife Dindy have lived since 2004. He received a D.Litt. et Phil. from the University of South Africa (Pretoria) where he serves as a Research Fellow in Biblical Archaeology. He is a Visiting Professor of Early Christianity at Regent University and also Associate Professor Extraordinary of New Testament at Stellenbosch University. Mark regularly leads study trips for the Biblical Archaeology Society to Turkey, Cyprus, and Greece. He also blogs periodically for Bible History Daily. He is the author and editor of numerous books, articles, and reviews including Biblical Turkey: A Guide to the Jewish and Christian Sites of Asia Minor. His particular research interest is the ancient Jewish communities, Roman roads, and Biblical routes in Turkey. Mark has been married to Dindy for thirty-nine years; they have four adult children, four grandsons and four granddaughters

Dr. Mark Fairchild

Dr. Mark Fairchild

Huntington University, IN

Dr. Fairchild received his Ph.D. in New Testament Studies from Drew University. He also completed Ph.D. coursework at Union Theological Seminary (NY) and Princeton Theological Seminary. Dr. Fairchild has twice received research grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities. In 1992, he collaborated with 11 other scholars at Yeshiva University exploring the Greek encounter with Judaism during the Hellenistic Period. In 2002, he joined 20 other scholars at the University of Chicago to investigate societal transformations and the legitimization of power in the early Islamic states.

Fairchild’s recent discovery of two previously unknown ancient synagogues in Turkey (including the world’s oldest known synagogue) was published in the Biblical Archaeology Review in 2012. Research at this ancient synagogue was also published in the Journal of Ancient Judaism in 2014. The Biblical Archaeology Review also published Fairchild’s research on St. Paul’s first mission from Perga to Antioch (2013) and another article on the biblical city of Laodicea (2017). Fairchild’s book on Christian Origins in Ephesus and Asia Minor (originally published in 2015) has been expanded and a second edition is currently available with Hendrickson Publishers (2017).

Dr. Fairchild is currently the Program Director for the Ephesus Meeting, an academic conference at the ancient site of Ephesus in Turkey. He annually travels to Turkey, Greece, Israel, Egypt and Jordan for research and to conduct study tours.

Dr. Phillip J. Long

Dr. Phillip J. Long

Grace Christian University, MI

Long is the author of Jesus the Bridegroom (Pickwick, 2012) and he has contributed several articles and book reviews for theological journals. He currently serves as editor of the Journal of Grace Theology. He has served as an interim pastor in Michigan and California and currently serves as teaching pastor at Rush Creek Bible Church, Byron Center, Michigan. He regularly leads trips to Israel for Grace and has done so since 2005.

He routinely blogs at Reading Acts (https://readingacts.com/), and many of his papers are available at Academia.edu (https://gbcol.academia.edu/PhillipLong)

Married to Lori since 1984, he has two daughters, Amy and Caroline.

Dr. Linford Stutzman

Dr. Linford Stutzman

Eastern Mennonite University, VA

One of the most urgent needs for the church in the twenty-first century is a new generation of creative and courageous leaders with a clear vision of the kingdom of God and a commitment to representing the good news of Jesus in the world. After two decades of teaching culture, religion, and mission courses to undergraduates at EMU, leading numerous semester-long and summer cross-cultural study programs in the Middle East, and directing the John Coffman Center for Missional Leadership Development at EMS, Dr. Linford Stutzman now directs and teaches courses in the new Biblical Lands Educational Seminars and Service (BLESS) program at EMS that brings all of the above together. In cooperation with mission and service agencies, BLESS provides unique overseas study opportunities for young adults and others that connect the dynamic and dangerous first century “Romanized” world of Jesus and Paul with our dynamic and dangerous globalized twenty-first century world of the future. Dr. Stutzman’s curiosity for the world and commitment to sharing the good news of Jesus began as a teen-ager in British Columbia where his parents were missionaries among Native Americans. Service in Israel, long-term mission assignments in Germany and Australia, a BA from EMU, and MAR from EMS, and a PhD in Religion and Culture from The Catholic University of America, provide the experiential and educational foundation for Dr. Stutzman’s passion for taking students into the world to learn from Jesus and his early followers. Each summer since 2004, Dr. Stutzman and his wife Janet have been exploring the Roman Empire, Paul’s mission activity, and the book of Acts aboard their “research vessel” SailingActs, and leading study seminars on and around the Mediterranean Sea for seminary students and others.

Tim Foster

Tim Foster

Ridley College, Australia

Tim is married to Alison, and they have three children (Caitlyn, Harry and Lucy). He became a Christian in 1985 while at Sydney University. After completing an Arts degree he served as a Youth Minister in multicultural Earlwood. He studied at Moore Theological College (1990-93), before being ordained and working in monocultural Gymea in Sydney’s south. While at Gymea Tim began his Doctor of Ministry through Fuller Seminary, focussing on mission and church in the post-Christendom context. He also developed the People of God evangelism resource. Tim then headed up the Training Division at Anglican Youthworks where he founded Youthworks College. In 2002 he returned to parish ministry as Vicar of All Souls’ Leichhardt. He has also completed a Master of Management in non-profit management.

Ben Witherington

Dr. Ben Witherington

Asbury Theological Seminary

Bible scholar Ben Witherington is Amos Professor of New Testament for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary and on the doctoral faculty at St. Andrews University in Scotland. A graduate of UNC, Chapel Hill, he went on to receive the M.Div. degree from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. from the University of Durham in England. He is now considered one of the top evangelical scholars in the world, and is an elected member of the prestigious SNTS, a society dedicated to New Testament studies. Witherington has also taught at Ashland Theological Seminary, Vanderbilt University, Duke Divinity School and Gordon-Conwell. A popular lecturer, Witherington has presented seminars for churches, colleges and biblical meetings not only in the United States but also in England, Estonia, Russia, Europe, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Australia. He has also led tours to Italy, Greece, Turkey, Israel, Jordan, and Egypt.

Dr. Alan Bandy

Dr. Alan Bandy

New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, LA

EDUCATION: Ph.D., Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (2007), M.Div., Mid-America Seminary in Memphis (2002), B.A., Clear Creek Baptist Bible College, (1998)

TEACHING SPECIALIZATIONS: New Testament, The Apocalypse of John

Dr. Jeff Weima

Dr. Jeff Weima

Calvin Theological Seminary, MI

Dr. Jeffrey Weima is Professor of New Testament at Calvin Theological Seminary, where he has taught for 28 years. He is a sought-after speaker who is able to communicate well the truths of the Bible in an interesting, contemporary and practical manner. Jeff has published five books thus far: Neglected Endings: The Significance of the Pauline Letter Closings (Sheffield 1994); An Annotated Bibliography of 1 and 2 Thessalonians (Brill 1998); two commentaries on 1 & 2 Thessalonians--one brief (Zondervan 2002) and the other extensive (710 pages; Baker 2014); and Paul the Ancient Letter Writer: An Introduction to Epistolary Analysis (Baker 2016). His sixth book, The Sermons to the Seven Churches of Revelation: A Commentary & Guide, will appear in print this summer (Baker 2021). Jeff is also the author of numerous scholarly articles, academic essays and book reviews. He is an active member of several academic societies, lectures in countries all over the world, leads biblical study tours to Greece, Turkey, Israel/Jordan, and Italy, conducts intensive preaching seminars for pastors, and preaches/speaks widely in churches in both the USA and Canada. Jeff and his wife, Bernice, have been married for 37 years. They have four children and eight very cute grandkids.

Douglas Jacoby

Dr. Douglas Jacoby

Lincoln Christian University, IL

Douglas Jacoby is a Bible teacher who has served as a minister on church staff for 20 years, in London, Birmingham, Sydney, Stockholm, Philadelphia, Indianapolis, and Washington DC, Douglas. Since 2003 he has worked as a freelance teacher and consultant.
Douglas has engaged in a number of public debates (Islam, atheism, theology, Judaism). He also serves an adjunct professor of theology at Lincoln Christian University and professor of theology in the Rocky Mountain School of Theology and Ministry. With degrees from Drew, Harvard, and Duke, Douglas has written 35 books, recorded nearly 900 podcasts, and spoken in over 100 universities, and in over 500 cities, in 126 nations around the world. Douglas has led 25 tours to the biblical world. The Jacobys have three adult children. Douglas and his wife, Vicki, reside in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Sharon Putt

Dr. Sharon Putt

Messiah University, PA

“Study to show yourself approved unto God, a worker that needs not be ashamed, handling rightly the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15). These words from the Bible perfectly describe what I want for my students. By teaching them theology and religion on an academic level, I hope to motivate them to know not only what they believe, but why they believe it so that they grow in their faith and in their love for God and others. When I’m not teaching (or grading papers!), I research and write in the areas of non-violent atonement theory, justice, reconciliation, forgiveness, and peace. I also work in the area of inter-religious dialogue, comparative theologies of religion, and Continental Philosophy. As a professor in an academic institution, I teach diverse doctrines and views of Christians in various cultures throughout Christian history in as unbiased a manner as possible.

Dr. Carl Rasmussen

Dr. Carl Rasmussen

Bethel University, MN

Dr. Carl Rasmussen is Professor Emeritus of Old Testament at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. He received his Ph.D. in Ancient Near Eastern Studies from Dropsie University (now the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania). Dr. Rasmussen has spent 16 years of his adult life living in Israel, Jordan, Greece, and Turkey, where he taught and led academic study programs. Since his retirement from Bethel University, Dr. Rasmussen has continued to teach and lead adult study tours in Turkey, Greece, and Israel. Each year he spends time in Jerusalem, where is Adjunct Professor at the Jerusalem University College. He is the author of The Zondervan Atlas of the Bible (2010) and The Zondervan Essential Atlas of the Bible (2013). He has created and maintains the web site www.HolyLandPhotos.org that features over 5,150 free High Resolution images of Israel, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Jordan, Italy, etc.

David deSilva

Dr. David deSilva

Ashland Theological Seminary, OH

Dr. David A. deSilva, PhD is Trustees’ Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek and an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church. He is the author of over twenty-five books, including Day of Atonement: A Novel of the Maccabean Revolt (Kregel, 2015), The Jewish Teachers of Jesus, James, and Jude: What Earliest Christianity Learned from the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha (Oxford, 2012), Seeing Things John’s Way: The Rhetoric of Revelation(Westminster John Knox, 2009), An Introduction to the New Testament: Contexts, Methods & Ministry Formation (InterVaristy, 2004), Introducing the Apocrypha (Baker Academic, 2002), Honor, Patronage, Kinship & Purity: Unlocking New Testament Culture (InterVarsity, 2000), and Perseverance in Gratitude: A Socio-rhetorical Commentary on the Letter “to the Hebrews” (Eerdmans, 2000). He was involved in several major Bible translation projects, serving as the Apocrypha Editor for the Common English Bible and working on the revision of the Apocrypha for the English Standard Version. He has also created several video resources and Mobile Ed courses for Faithlife, including “The Apocrypha: Witness Between the Testaments” (BI 291), “The Cultural World of the New Testament” (NT 201), and “Interpreting the Epistle to the Hebrews” (NT TBA).