Gordon College, BA; Fuller Theological Seminary, MDiv; Georgetown University, PhD (Political Philosophy).
Dr. Belcher’s teaching is informed and inspired by a quote from Nicholas Wolterstorff, “Shalom is both God’s cause in the world and our human calling; We are workers in God’s cause, his peace-workers. The missio Dei is our mission.” He believes that Jesus is at the center of all that we do. He informs the mindset and inspires the mission as we create culture and seek the peace of the city (Jeremiah 29:7).
Dr. Belcher is best known for his widely acclaimed, award-winning book, Deep Church: A Third Way Beyond Emerging and Traditional (InterVarsity Press, 2009). Deep Church argues that faithful Christian ministry must learn from the great tradition of classical and Reformed theology as well as engage in the practice of discerning and creative contextualization. It illustrates this commitment by considering a host of issues, ranging from worship to evangelism. It continues to be read widely and to be used as a textbook in many seminaries and colleges. He is currently completing its sequel, Deep Christianity (InterVarsity Press, forthcoming 2013), which is a winsome and positive presentation of the faith for people living in a post-Christian world. Preparation of this new volume has involved a year of research and writing in Europe that served as a backdrop as he went in search of deep Christianity. There he investigated the sources of modern doubt and skepticism as well as a number of remarkable examples of Christian witness through heroes of the faith like Lewis, Wilberforce, John Newton, Corrie ten Boom, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
Dr. Belcher is the founding and former lead pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Newport Beach, California, where he served from 2000-2010 and led a period of steady growth. He is the co-founder of the Restoring Community Conference: Integrating Social Interaction, Sacred Space and Beauty in the 21st Century, an annual conference for city officials, planners, builders and architects. He previously led the Twenty-Something Fellowship and The Warehouse Service at Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena, CA, and was a co-founder of Renaissance Skateboards. He has served as an adjunct professor at Azusa Pacific University and Reformed Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Michelle, and four children have spent the past year traveling in England and Europe while Jim worked on his next book.