I have taught at Regent’s Park College since 1972, successively as Research Fellow, Tutorial Fellow in Christian Doctrine, Principal (1989-2007), and Director of Research. I have been Chairman of the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion, and am an Honorary Fellow of St Peter’s College, Oxford. As an ordained Baptist Minister, I have been concerned to foster ecumenical relations, acting as co-chair of conversations between the Baptist World Alliance and both the Anglican Communion and the Roman Catholic Church, and serving as an ecumenical representative on the General Synod of the Church of England. I am an Ecumenical Canon of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, and Ecumenical Prebendary of St Endellion, North Cornwall.
My research interests are in the doctrine of the Triune God, wisdom literature, the relations between theology, literature and late-modern philosophy, and ecumenical ecclesiology. Leisure interests include music, canal boats and steam trains. I have recently published my first novel, a mystery exploring the mythology and symbolism of the unicorn: ‘A Unicorn Dies: A Novel of Mystery and Ideas’ (Firedint: Oxford, 2018).
I have degrees from Oxford in English Language and Literature (BA Hons, 1968) and Theology (MA, 1972 and DPhil, 1975), and a DD (2004).
My role in College
As Director of Research, I endeavour to create opportunities for colleagues to share their research and collaborate, including through a termly Senior Research Seminar. I am also Director of the Project for the Study of Love in Religion, and research supervisor in systematic theology, ecclesiology, and Baptist studies.
“The world is charged with the grandeur of God.” Gerard Manley Hopkins
- Seeing the World and Knowing God: Hebrew Wisdom and Christian Doctrine in a Late-Modern Context (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013)
- Ed. with G. Bader, The Spirit and Letter: A Tradition and a Reversal (London: T. & T. Clark, 2013)
- Tracks and Traces: Baptist Identity in Church and Theology (Carlisle: Paternoster Press, 2003)
- The Promised End: Eschatology in Theology and Literature (Oxford: Blackwell, 2000)
- Participating in God: A Pastoral Doctrine of the Trinity (London: Darton, Longman and Todd, 2000)
- Freedom and Limit: A Dialogue between Literature and Christian Doctrine (Basingstoke: Macmillan Press, 1991; repr. Macon GA: Mercer University Press, 1999)
- Past Event and Present Salvation: The Christian Idea of Atonement (London: Darton, Longman and Todd/Westminster Press, 1989)
- The Creative Suffering of God (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988)
Articles and Research Papers
- 'Restorative Justice and the Theological Dynamic of Forgiveness', The Oxford Journal of Law and Religion 5.1 (2016), pp. 54-65
- 'Suffering', in N. Adams, G. Pattison and G. Ward, eds, The Oxford Handbook of Theology and Modern European Thought (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 169-92