Meet John Walvoord

Distinguished American theologian, teacher, writer, and pastor John Walvoord was born on May 1, 1910, in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, to teacher John Garrett Walvoord and his wife, Mary. During Maryís difficult pregnancy, her doctors advised her to have an abortion. But Mary and John believed that their baby was a gift from God and refused the procedure. Their son proved to be a strong, healthy child and excelled in both academics and athletics in school. Although he was brought up in a Christian home, John had little interest in the faith. When he was fifteen, he and his family moved to Racine after his father accepted a position as superintendent of the junior high. They joined the Union Gospel Tabernacle where John committed his life to Christ after attending a Bible study on Galatians.

John continued his education at Wheaton College, then went on to Texas Christian University and Dallas Theological Seminary where he completed his Th.D. degree in 1936. That same year, he was appointed registrar by Lewis Sperry Chafer, the seminaryís president and Johnís mentor. John also taught systematic theology at the seminary, and pastored the Rosen Heights Presbyterian church in Fort Worth. As the years passed, he became more involved in the administration of the school, serving as Chaferís assistant and secretary to the faculty. Upon Chaferís death in 1952, John became the seminaryís second president and continued to lead the institution until his retirement in 1986.

In addition to his responsibilities at the seminary, John earned a reputation as one of the most influential dispensational theologians of the twentieth century. He has played a prominent role in advocating a pretribulational rapture, a literal thousand-year millennium, and distinction between Israel and the church. His prodigious literary output numbers 30 books, including The Return of the Lord, The Rapture Question, An Exposition of the Epistle of Paul to the Philippians, The Prophecy Knowledge Handbook, and Major Bible Prophecies. He is also the editor of several works such as The Bible Knowledge Commentary and Systematic Theology, and served on the committee that produced the New Scofield Reference Bible.

In 1939, John married Geraldine Lungren and they had four sons. John passed away at the age of 92.

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