Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr., Th.D., is a conservative, evangelical, and Reformed lecturer and writer. He is committed to the Reformed faith as set forth in the Westminster Confession and Faith and Catechisms. Though retired from pastoral ministry since 2016, he holds his ordination in the Reformed Presbyterian Church General Assembly, a conservative and Reformed denomination.
Birth, Conversion, and Family
He was born on May 3, 1950 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he was raised and where he graduated from high school and college. Though he is sometimes teased about his Southern accent, he points out that he does actually speak the King’s English. This is easy to prove in that he is from the same state where Elvis lived.
He was converted to Christ in August, 1966 while attending a youth ministry in Baco Raton, Florida. The minister was preaching on Ephesians 2:8-9 when the Lord opened his heart to the gospel. He has been unwaveringly committed to conservative, evangelical theology ever since. He has been married to his wife, Melissa, since 1971. They have three grown children all of whom are evangelical and Reformed Christians. He also has six grandchildren (half of whom are left-handed!).
Education and Christian Service
Our Director holds a B.A. in Bible (cum laude, 1973) from Tennessee Temple University. While attending that fundamentalist institution, his personal study led him to the doctrines of grace in Calvinism. Upon graduating there, he attended Grace Theological Seminary for two years (1973-1975) while he was still a dispensationalist. During his personal studies at GTS, he became convinced of a fuller reformed theology including a strong covenantalism, which impacted his views on baptism, the church, worship practice, and more.
Upon completing his theological transformation into covenantal Calvinism, he transferred to Reformed Theological Seminary in 1975. There he studied under several noted Reformed scholars, including Dr. Morton H. Smith, Dr. Simon J. Kistemaker, James R. deWitt, and Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen. While studying under Bahnsen at RTS, he became convinced of the postmillennial hope. He thereby brought his sovereign grace covenantalism to its logical conclusion. He graduated from RTS with an M.Div. degree in 1977.
After graduating from seminary, Dr. Gentry pastored several Presbyterian churches, including over fifteen years at the historic Reedy River Presbyterian Church (founded in 1887). He eventually enrolled at Whitefield Theological Seminary where he studied under Dr. Kenneth G. Talbot. There he earned a Th.M. (1985) and Th.D. (1988, summa cum laude). His 430 page doctoral dissertation was titled: “Dating the Book of Revelation: An Exegetical and Historical Argument for a Pre-A.D. 70 Composition.” His dissertation readers were Dr. George W. Knight III, Dr. Jay E. Adams, and Dr. C. Gregg Singer. His dissertation was eventually published as Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation, and has gone through two editions and several printings. It has become a widely-cited source in technical Revelation studies.
In the 1990s he taught various theological and biblical courses at Christ College in Lynchburg, Virginia and Bahnsen Theological Seminary in Fullerton, California. He has spoken at scores of conferences throughout the nation (including Ligonier Ministries’ National Conference in Orlando), in the Caribbean, and in Canberra, Australia. He has appeared on dozens of Christian radio programs. Though he lectures on a variety of theological and worldview themes, his conference ministry has focused primarily on eschatology, the Book of Revelation, biblical law, and Six-day Creation. He is available for conference ministry through GoodBirth Ministries.
Dr. Gentry not only has a great desire to teach Christian truth but also to promote it through writing. He founded and teaches a correspondence course on research writing, and publication called “Righteous Writing.” In that course he trains Christians to be effective communicators (that course is available at his commercial site: KennethGentry.Com).
He has also written scores of articles appearing in Christianity Today, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Westminster Theological Journal, Tabletalk, The Banner of Truth, Faith Over All of Life, The Presbyterian Journal, Contra Mundum, Antithesis, and numerous other magazines and journals. Our ministry was established to provide him more time to release additional articles and studies of value to Christian faith and living.
In addition to brief articles, he has authored a number of books including:
- As It Is Written: The Genesis Account Literal or Literary?
- The Beast of Revelation
- Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation
- A Biblical Defense of Predestination
- The Book of Revelation Made Easy: You Can Understand Biblical Prophecy
- The Charismatic Gift of Prophecy
- The Christian Case Against Abortion
- Covenantal Theonomy
- God Gave Wine
- God’s Law in the Modern World
- God’s Law Made Easy
- The Great Tribulation: Past or Future? (with Thomas D. Ice)
- The Greatness of the Great Commission: The Christian Enterprise in a Fallen World
- Have We Missed the Second Coming: A Critique of the Hyper-preterist Error
- He Shall Have Dominion: A Postmillennial Eschatology
- House Divided: The Break-up of Dispensational Theology (with Greg L. Bahnsen)
- Lord of the Saved
- Navigating the Book of Revelation: Special Studies on Important Issues
- Nourishment from the Word: Select Studies in Reformed Theology
- Olivet Discourse Made Easy
- Perilous Times: A Study in Eschatological Evil
- Political Christianity
- Postmillennialism Made Easy
- Predestination Made Easy
- Pushing the Antithesis: The Apologetic Methodology of Greg L. Bahnsen
- Tongues-Speaking: Meaning, Purpose, and Cessation
- Yea, Hath God Said?: The Framework Hypothesis / Six Day Creation Debate
He has also contributed chapters to several books by various publishers:
- The Covenant: God’s Voluntary Condescension (Joseph A. Pipa and C. N. Wilborn, eds.)
- Creation According to the Scriptures (P. Andrew Sandlin, ed.)
- Four Views on the Book of Revelation (C. Marvin Pate, ed.)
- The Standard Bearer: A Festschrift for Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen (Steven M. Schlissel, ed.)
- Thine Is the Kingdom (Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr., ed.)
- Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond (Darrell L. Bock, ed.)
- The Welfare State (David L. Bender, ed.)
- When Shall These Things Be: A Reformed Response to Hyper-preterism (Keith L. Mathison, ed.)
- World Religions and Cults: Counterfeits of Christianity (Bodie Hodges and Roger Patterson, eds.)
He has completed a two-volume academic commentary on the Book of Revelation that is scheduled to be published by Tolle Lege Press in the Summer of 2019. The title for this project is: The Divorce of Israel: A Redemptive-Historical Interpretation of the Book of Revelation. This project has been subsidized by free-will gifts from interested donors through GoodBirth Ministries. Please see our Research Projects page for project ideas for which we are currently seeking funding.
In addition to his writing ministry, Dr. Gentry has a growing number of lectures and debates available on DVD, including
- Amillennialism vs. Postmillennialism: Richard B. Gaffin, Jr. v. Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
- The Beast of Revelation: Identified
- Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation
- The Climax of Revelation (Rev. 19-22)
- Faith of Our Fathers: Why Creeds and Confessions?
- God Gave Wine: Drinking with Christ and the Apostles
- Keys to the Book of Revelation
- Matthew 24: Past or Future? (Thomas D. Ice vs. Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.)
- Postmillennialism Lectures at Whitefield Theological Seminary
- Survey of the Book of Revelation at Whitefield Theological Seminary
- Understanding the Creation Account
We are currently working on other video projects (see Research Projects page). Two of these are: a five-lecture series on Postmillennialism and a five-lecture series on the Olivet Discourse. Both of these should be released in late 2019. Funds from GoodBirth Ministries are making these educational materials possible.