Today, by God’s grace, I graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary with a doctorate in preaching the literary forms of the Bible. If I’ve learned anything from this process, it’s that knowledge is the means to the end: loving God more. 1 Corinthians 8:2-3 makes the point clearly: If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God, he is known by God. What I have enjoyed the most about this process is that my love for God has increased far more than my knowledge. I am humbled by the support of so many that made this graduation possible:

Lindsay Diane– This degree would have been impossible without the daily, Christ-like ministry of my wife. She not only supported me through the entire process, but made the sacrifices that enabled me to complete the work. Thank you for doctorate Fridays, and for challenging me to finish in a timely manner. I love you more today than I knew I could love.

Green Pond Bible Chapel– The elders graciously granted me permission to pursue this degree, and they have supported me by praying for me, providing finances, holding me accountable, and encouraging me. My co-laborers in the gospel, Andy Brown and Mike Ruel, willingly helped bear the pastoral work load which allowed me to focus on this project. They also endured many conversations regarding postmodernism and apocalyptic literature which I am sure they were glad to forget. Finally, the church body at Green Pond Bible Chapel patiently listened to sermons on Zechariah, Daniel, and Revelation over the past four years. May God bless you for your perseverance!

Friends & Family– Thanks to all who prayed for and encouraged me through the process. I know my extended family and friends prayed often for this project. I know my mom prayed for me as only a mom could. Thanks to my dad for being my primary editor. Thanks to those who offered me hospitality for weeks at a time. You are all examples to me of real-time love for Jesus and his church.

My Mentors– Finally, I would like to thank Dr. Randal Pelton and Dr. Jeffrey Arthurs. These men have been more than academic advisors for me, they are my mentors in the gospel. Both use their academic gifts for God’s glory, and both have a shepherd’s heart. Thank you both for critically engaging in this work, and reminding me often that the purpose was never scholarship for scholarship’s sake. I count you both as brothers and fellow laborers in the gospel.

Ryan serves as the Senior Pastor of Green Pond Bible Chapel in Rockaway, New Jersey. He is married with four children.

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