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Dr. Abjar Bahkou accepts call to join Seminary faculty

Dr. Abjar Bahkou will join the Concordia Seminary, St. Louis faculty as associate professor of Practical Theology beginning June 1 for the 2018-19 academic year. Bahkou is a well-respected scholar, theologian and leading authority on Arabic and Islamic Studies within The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS).

“Concordia Seminary is earnest about our Lord’s commission to all nations, and so we thank God that Dr. Abjar Bahkou will join our faculty,” said Seminary President Dr. Dale A. Meyer. “Published in Arabic, an expert in patristics and Islam, fluent in four modern languages and a proven teacher, he will stimulate our students to cross-cultural boundaries to tell people the Good News about Jesus. Dr. Bahkou is another demonstration that the Lord of the church is using our Seminary to encourage our church and the faithful in His mission.”

He will be installed during the Seminary’s Opening Service Aug. 24 in the Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus.

Bahkou joins the Seminary from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, where he served in several capacities including most recently as senior lecturer of Arabic literature, culture and language (2015-present), and resident research fellow for the Institute for Studies of Religion, Program on Global Studies of Religion (2009-present). Previous teaching experience includes as an adjunct professor of Muslim-Christian dialogue at Concordia Seminary (2014); adjunct professor of Arabic literature, culture and language at the University of North Texas (2009); and instructor in Islamic studies at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (2006-08). He also completed teaching assistantships at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (2006-07); St. Ephraim Theological Seminary in Damascus, Syria (1998-99); and Salesian Pontifical University in Rome, Italy (1996-98).

Bahkou holds a Ph.D. from Pontifical Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies in Rome, Italy (2011), and Salesian Pontifical University in Rome, Italy (1998). He holds a master’s degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Islamic Studies (2009) and Salesian Pontifical University in Education (1996). He holds a bachelor’s degree from Salesian Pontifical University (1995) and a Diploma in Theology from St. Ephraim Theological Seminary (1993).

He is the author of The Monk Encounters the Prophet, The Story of the Encounter between Monk Bahīra and Muhammad as it is Recorded in the Syriac Manuscript of Mardin 259/2 (2017); Life with God (in Arabic) a Discipleship Program based on Luther Catechism(2017); Defending Christian Faith, The fifth Part of the Christian Apology of Gerasimus (2014); Kitāb al-Kāfī Fī al-Maʽnā al-Shāfī (The Complete Book of the Healing Meaning) (2012); On the Road to Emmaus: Youth Devotional Journey through Christian Faith (2010); and Ipotesi di Education Religiosa Cristiana Nel Contesto Giovanile Arabo Siriano, (A Proposal for the Religious Education of Young People in the Arabo-Syrian Context) (1998).

He has written numerous articles and has done translation work from English into Arabic. He is currently working on a book on Christian Muslim encounters, and has penned multiple articles to be published in 2018.

Bahkou received an honorary Doctor of Letters from Concordia Seminary in 2013.

“A position at Concordia Seminary is a divine call, and when God calls us, we obey and follow by faith,” Bahkou said. “My wife and I are honored to be a part of the faculty family at the Seminary and look forward to the many friendships that will grow for our family.”

Bahkou and his wife, Phylan, have three children. His hobbies include spending time with his family, physical fitness and traveling.

About Concordia Seminary
Concordia Seminary, St. Louis provides Gospel-centered graduate-level theological education for pastors, missionaries, deaconesses, scholars and other leaders in the name of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS). To learn more, visit