David P. Gushee
Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics
Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life
Mercer University, Atlanta & Macon, Georgia
Dr. David P. Gushee is Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life at Mercer University. Widely regarded as one of the leading moral voices in American Christianity, he is the author or editor of 20 books and hundreds of articles in his field, including Righteous Gentiles of the Holocaust, Kingdom Ethics, The Sacredness of Human Life, and, most recently, Changing Our Mind. Dr. Gushee has always accompanied his scholarly production with church work (First Baptist Church, Decatur), activism (human rights, creation care, LGBT acceptance), opinion writing (Washington Post, Huffington Post, Baptist News Global), board service (Public Religion Research, Sojourners), and domestic and global media consultation. He has lectured on every continent, with endowed lectures scheduled in New Zealand and Holland in 2015. Dr. Gushee has been married to Jeanie for 30 years. They are the parents of two daughters and a son, and the grandparents of a beautiful baby boy, Jonah. They reside in Atlanta.
As Distinguished University Professor, Dr. Gushee teaches at McAfee School of Theology and throughout Mercer University in his specialty, Christian ethics. As Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life, he organizes events and courses to advance quality conversations about major issues arising at the intersection of theology, ethics, and public policy. Beyond his work at Mercer, he currently serves as Senior Columnist for Baptist News Global. Dr. Gushee also serves on the board of directors of Sojourners and as Vice-Chair of the board of the Public Religion Research Institute. He is also a member on the Death Penalty Committee & Detainee Treatment Takforce of the Constitution Project. He has most recently become a Faith Consultant for the Family Acceptance Project.
Dr. Gushee is a scholar, activist, and churchman. His research interests focus on the ethical teachings of Jesus Christ and the Christian theological-ethical tradition, together with its contemporary implications for Christian discipleship and public witness. He has published twenty books and many hundreds of essays, book chapters, articles, reviews, and opinion pieces. Probably his most widely noted books before Fall 2014 were Righteous Gentiles of the Holocaust (Fortress, 1994/Paragon House, 2003), Kingdom Ethics (IVP, 2003),The Future of Faith in American Politics (Baylor, 2008), a devotional work with his wife Jeanie called Yours is the Day, Lord, Yours is the Night (Thomas Nelson, 2012), and the broadly endorsed Sacredness of Human Life (Eerdmans, 2013), which interrogates what it has meant, and proposes what it should mean, to say that human life is sacred. It is his most ambitious and demanding scholarly project to date, and has been nominated for the prestigious Grawemeyer Award.
As an activist, Professor Gushee was the principal drafter of both the Evangelical Climate Initiative (2006) and the Evangelical Declaration against Torture (2007), both of which changed the conversation in church and society about their respective issues. He is regularly quoted in major national media of all types, including NPR, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal, as an authority on the role of religion, especially evangelicals, in American public life, and as a voice for civility and dialogue across our cultural divides. He maintains an active voice on social media (twitter: @dpgushee).
Dr. Gushee’s release of Changing Our Mind (Read the Spirit books) in late October 2014 added a new chapter to his scholarship and activism. In this book, Dr. Gushee makes a biblical case for a transformative rethinking of the LGBT issue and for the opening of all Christian hearts to full acceptance of so often marginalized and mistreated gay Christians in the life of the Church. Since the release of the book he has sought to embody his repentant commitment to serving the well-being of the LGBT community by joining the work of the Family Acceptance Project as their Faith Consultant, becoming a member of the advisory board of the Atlanta chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and accepting invitations for a busy lecture season on LGBT & Christianity issues in 2015.
Dr. Gushee, his beloved wife Jeanie, and their regal cat Noah live in Atlanta, Georgia, where they eagerly await visits from their grown children Holly (with her husband Jonathan), David, and Marie. An ordained Baptist minister, Dr. Gushee and his wife attend First Baptist Church in Decatur, where he teaches a weekly Sunday School class, as well as Holy Cross Catholic Church. David is a long-time Atlanta Braves fan and, at 53, still very much enjoys competing with his students and colleagues on the tennis court.