Harry R. Kendall Professor of New Testament
As a Chinese Christian born and raised in Borneo Malaysia, educated in the United States, and currently serving the global church by preparing academic and ecclesial leaders in the U.S. and China, I envision my vocation as a Bible teacher in terms of helping students of God's Word enter into a dialogue between cultures of antiquity and modern times. My calling as a biblical scholar is to bridge the gap between the church and the academy, between laity and scholars, between U.S. Christianities and those in the Majority World, between faith and reason. Over the last twenty years, my teaching and research have focused on culture and the Bible, with a special emphasis on the tasks of building nations, transforming local communities, fulfilling the ideals of culture, saving individuals from chaos, meaninglessness, injustice, and violence and moving them toward wholeness/shalom and beauty/glory. It is an exciting experience for me to meet students and scholars from all over the world, and to be part of that catholicity of the Body of Christ--not only in Evanston, but also in China, Australia, Israel-Palestine, Turkey, Greece, and Italy. The Bible is the inheritance of the world and biblical interpretation is the responsibility of the global church--with each of us taking into account local contexts and issues. The "aesthetic embrace" of cross-cultural biblical interpretation happens when we as readers are drawn into something larger than ourselves. As we are embraced and held up by biblical faith and wisdom, there and then we know that we are being blessed and loved.