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Dr. James Voelz photo

Rev. Dr. James W. Voelz

Graduate Professor of Exegetical Theology, Exegetical Theology

Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology, Exegetical Theology

Dr. James W. Voelz is the Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

A faculty member since 1989, he is graduate professor of Exegetical Theology. He has served as chair of the Department of Exegetical Theology (2013–15), dean of the faculty (2006–10) and dean of the Graduate School (1996–2002).

His areas of focus are the Greek language, hermeneutics (theory of interpretation) and the Synoptic Gospels, but he also has taught the Pauline epistles and Acts of the Apostles. He served as an adjunct faculty member of Kenrick Seminary, the Roman Catholic diocesan seminary in St. Louis, from 2009 to 2014, and from 2005 to 2015 was coordinator of the Institute of Theology at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Des Peres, Mo., at which he also taught a Sunday morning Bible class for 24 years.

Voelz was first called to the faculty of Concordia Theological Seminary (then) in Springfield, Ill., in 1975, and he moved with that institution to Fort Wayne, Ind., in 1976, where he taught through 1989. During those years, he also served as assistant pastor at Zion Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne (1984–88).

He has been involved with the North American-centered Society of Biblical Literature since 1977, presenting papers regularly on a wide range of topics, generally in the areas of the Greek language, hermeneutics and the Gospel of Mark. In 1984 he was invited to membership in Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas (SNTS), the international Society of New Testament Studies. Again, he has regularly presented papers in both the biblical hermeneutics and New Testament Greek grammar seminars there, each of which he also has co-chaired in turn from 1991 until the present. He has written four books (an elementary Greek textbook, a hermeneutics textbook and a two-volume commentary on the gospel of Mark) and dozens of articles.

He holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in New Testament studies from Cambridge University in Cambridge, England (1978); a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) from Concordia Seminary, St. Louis (1971); and a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) from Concordia Senior College in Fort Wayne, Ind. (1967).

A Festchrift containing 19 essays has been written in his honor — penned by fellow scholars, colleagues and former students from seven different countries. The volume, entitled The Press of the Text: Biblical Studies in Honor of James W. Voelz, was published in September 2017, and was edited by Concordia Seminary emeritus faculty members Dr. Andrew Bartelt and Dr. Paul Raabe, and former Provost Dr. Jeff Kloha.

For relaxation he enjoys golf, tennis, wine and tournament bridge.

He and his wife, Judy, have one son, Jonathan.


Greek language and linguistics
Mark and the Synoptic Gospels