Welcome to the Evangelical History blog of The Gospel Coalition! This blog is a partnership between Justin Taylor and Thomas Kidd (me). Many of you will know Justin from his influential Between Two Worlds blog, which will be continuing at TGC while he and I also collaborate on this initiative.
What do we mean by “evangelical history”? Justin and I both have broad interests in the history of evangelical Christianity, and the history of Christianity, so those will be a major focus here. But we’re also interested in a Christian view of all kinds of history: political, military, social, and other topics.
Since I’m the relative newcomer to TGC, here’s a bit of my background: I am a history professor at Baylor University (since 2002), and I have written or co-authored eight books, mostly on religion and politics in the American colonial and Revolutionary eras.
I grew up in South Carolina, and the Lord saved me when I was beginning my freshman year at Clemson University. I was involved with the parachurch ministry The Navigators at Clemson. Over time I gravitated toward Baptist convictions and have been a member of Baptist churches in South Bend, Indiana, and Waco, Texas, my adopted hometown. My wife Ruby and I have two boys, who are 12 and 11 years old, and we are members at Highland Baptist Church in Waco, where I have served as an elder, an adult Sunday School teacher, and a small group leader.
I did a Ph.D. in history at the University of Notre Dame, where I worked with George Marsden, the great historian of American Christianity. Among the many things I learned from Marsden is that Christians can make an impact in the world of secular academic publishing, and I credit him with much of my ability to publish with outlets such as Yale and Oxford University Press.
Over time I also developed Reformed and evangelical convictions in alignment with The Gospel Coalition’s, especially as I studied the ministry and theology of Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield, the two great luminaries of the First Great Awakening.
Since 2011 I have been writing periodic articles and reviews for The Gospel Coalition, so it was a natural fit for me to join the blogging team at TGC when Justin, Collin Hansen, and I recently began talking about the possibility.
I am delighted and honored to become part of TGC, and Justin and I are looking forward to making Evangelical History a go-to resource for pastors and laypeople looking for the best possible content on Christian history and the history of Christians.