Goodbye, Howdershell. Hello, Wentzville.

Yesterday, at the invitation of Dr. David Norris, I had the privilege to teach a three hour Pneumatology class at Urshan Graduate School of Theology. The subject was the gifts of the Spirit. I realized this may be the last time I am ever on the Urshan campus before the move to the new campus in Wentzville, Missouri, this fall.

Although I retired from full time employment with UGST on July 1, 2018, it was with a mutual agreement with the school administration that, if there were a need to do so, the school could invite me to return to teach from time to time. Earlier this week, I accepted an invitation to teach a course on the Book of Psalms for this upcoming fall semester at the beautiful new forty three acre campus  in Wentzville.

I am pleased to have had the opportunity to teach during the final semester on the campus that long served Gateway College of Evangelism and, more recently, Urshan College and Urshan Graduate School of Theology. In addition, I am thankful for the privilege of teaching during the first semester on the new campus of the Urshan system.

It is possible to take classes from UGST as a guest or to audit classes. A person who wishes to explore the Book of Psalms with me next semester, but who is not enrolled as a student, could go to the website [], click “Admissions” on the menu bar, then click “Apply for admission,” “Apply as a guest or audit,” and then complete the form to obtain full information.

My history with the Howdershell, Florissant campus goes back quite a few years. Actually, I was on the original campus of Gateway College of Evangelism before the school moved to Howdershell. This was sometime during 1968 – 1970, when I served as Director of Promotions and Publications for the General Sunday School Division of the United Pentecostal Church, Inc., under the direction of  J. O. Wallace, the director of the division. I was on campus with the mission of developing some promotional material for the annual North American Sunday school attendance drive.

The school quickly outgrew the first campus and in 1971 moved to 700 Howdershell Road in Florissant, Missouri. This beautiful campus of some twenty acres had previously served the St. Stanislaus Seminary, the oldest college campus west of the Mississippi River.

In 1974, President W. C. Parkey invited me to join the Gateway faculty, where I would teach courses in Christian education. I also taught the Media Evangelism course, which published a tabloid sized newspaper for purposes of evangelism. The paper was called “The Good Word,” and the press run eventually reached 100,000.

Late in 1974, I think it was in November, I received a phone call from W. I. Black, the district superintendent of the Missouri district of the UPC. He asked if I were interested in pastoring. His call resulted in my seven and one-half year pastorate of the First Pentecostal Church in Dupo, Illinois. As a result, I taught for only one full semester at Gateway.

That was not the end of my involvement with the school, however. In the early 1980s, I worked with Gateway to develop a continuing education program. The purpose was to provide an opportunty for those who had some college but who had never completed a degree to do so by taking concentrated classes on campus and developing portfolios of their previous educational experiences. Several people graduated from this program.

In 1982, I moved my family from Illinois to California, where I was involved in administration and teaching until 2007 at Christian Life College. But even during this time, I was able to return to the Howdershell campus from time to time as an adjunct professor for Urshan Graduate School of Theology, located on the same campus as Gateway. As I recall, the first class I taught for UGST was a week long course in January 2001, the first year of the seminary’s operation.

My work as an adjunct continued until 2007, when Judy and I returned, with my mother, from California back to the St. Louis area, where I planned to serve as a part time faculty member at UGST in what I termed “semi-retirement.” This description of my work didn’t last long. Soon, I found myself serving as the academic dean in addition to teaching. Then, in addition to these responsibilities, I moved into a new office and also functioned as dean of administration.

So, I have quite a long and storied past relationship with Howdershell. I will always have fond memories of students and faculty and administrative friends. But it’s time to move on. The schools now occupying the campus – Urshan College and Urshan Graduate School of Theology – have outgrown the campus. I can honestly say I was there in the early days, and I am happy to still be around in some capacity in these days.

Goodbye, Howdershell. Hello, Wentzville.[archive]


Yahweh, Jehovah, and Jesus

On the day before yesterday, I submitted an article to the Pentecostal Life magazine titled “Yahweh, Jehovah, and Jesus.” I wrote the article by request, and it is scheduled to appear in the August 2019 issue, which will focus on the Oneness of God.

The objective of the article is to explore the use of quotations from the Old Testament in the New Testament that identify Jesus as Yahweh or Jehovah. The word Yahweh is the transliteration of the third person singular form of the Hebrew verb by which God revealed Himself to Moses, as recorded in Exodus 3. God told Moses to tell the Israelites in Egypt that he had been sent by I AM (Exodus 3:14), which is the first person singular form of the same verb. Yahweh means “He is” or “He will be.”

The word Jehovah is a transliteration of the same verb, taking into account the vowel pointing inserted into the four Hebrew consonants that form YHWH (i.e., Yahweh). There were no vowels in the Hebrew of the Old Testament, only consonants. In later biblical Hebrew, during the monarchy, some consonants began to represent traditional vowel sounds, and the Masoretes, scribes who worked from the sixth to the tenth centuries A.D., developed a system of pointing – we might call it “dots and dashes” to represent traditional vowel sounds. This system was employed in Hebrew manuscripts to insert the vowel sounds for the word Adonai into the Tetragrammaton (the four consonants of YHWH) to alert readers not to vocalize the name of God but to say “Adonai” instead. To pronounce the vowels of Adonai with the consonants for Yahweh resulted in Jehovah.

This post is not a duplication of the article. It is additional information. I hope you will read the article and the others that will appear in this issue of Pentecostal Life in August. If you’re not already a subscriber to the magazine, I recommend subscription. Each issue is filled with excellent articles, with a complete section designed to be used in small group Bible study.[archive]