James O. Duke

Brite Divinity School educates and inspires people to serve God's diverse world as leaders in churches, the academy, and public life.

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James Duke, Professor of the History of Christianity and the History of Christian Thought, received his B.A. from the University of Maryland and his M.Div. and Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University. He has taught at the University of Montana and Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California, where he was a member of the Doctoral Faculty in Historical Studies at the Graduate Theological Union. He is recipient of the TCU Deans’ Award for Distinguished Teaching and the Catherine Saylor Hill Award for Faculty Excellence. His publications include translations of German theologian Friedrich Schleiermacher as well as studies in the history of theology in North America, history and doctrine of the Stone-Campbell movement, and theological methodology. He has served as editor of American Academy of Religion publications and at present is on the editorial team preparing The New Westminster Dictionary of Church History. An ordained minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Duke has served on the Theology Task Force of Churches Uniting in Christ (CUIC), the Theology Commission of the Council on Christian Unity, and the Disciples-Reformed and Disciples-Roman Catholic dialogues.


Ph.D., Vanderbilt University, 1975
M.A., Vanderbilt University, 1974
M.Div., Vanderbilt Divinity School, 1971
B.A., University of Maryland, 1968


Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)


  • Evanglicalism
  • History of Christianity I, Early and Medieval
  • History of Christianity II, Reformation and Modern
  • Seminar in Christian Thought - Formation of the New Testament Canon
  • Seminar in History and Hermeneutics
  • Seminar in History and Hermeneutics - History of Hermeneutics and Interpretation Theory
  • The Reformation Era and Its Aftermath


  • How to Think Theologically, 3rd edition, in collaboration with Howard Stone, Fortress Press. 2013
  • How to Think Theologically Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2006
  • Sources of Christian Theology in America Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1999
  • The Church for Disciples of Christ: Seeking to Be Truly Church St. Louis: Christian Board of Publication, 1998
  • Christian Faith Seeking Historical Understanding: Essays in Honor of H. Jack Forstman Macon, Ga: Mercer University Press, 1997
  • Makers of Christian Theology in America Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1997

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

  • “The Priesthood of Christ in Church and Ministry.” E-text published article is available (as of Jan. 2009) at Council on Christian Unity, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ): http:// www.’s%20Priesthood%202008.pdf. 2009
  • “Theological Perspectives, on Genesis 3, 1 Samuel 3, and Ezekiel 17.” In Feasting on the Word: Preaching the Revised Common Lectionary, vol. 3, ed. David Bartlett and Barbara Brown Taylor. Westminster John Knox Press, 2008.
  • (with Peter G. Heltzel, Verity A..Jones, and William J. Nottingham.) “Theology as Intercultural Conversation in an Age of Globalization” and “Disciples Theology in the Twenty-first Century.” In Chalice Introduction to Disciples Theology, pp. 10-19, 20-33. Edited by Peter Goodwin Heltzel. St. Louis: Chalice Press, 2008.
  • Review of The End of Memory: Remembering Rightly in a Violent World, by Miroslav Volk. In Stone-Campbell Movement Journal 11,1 (2008): 106-197.
  • “How to Think Theologically: Reflections on ‘Public Theology’.” Clergy Journal 83,1 (October 2007): 8-10.

Professional Affiliations

Association of Disciples for Theological Discussion
American Academy of Religion