Author Bio

The Lord is risen! And that makes all the difference.

Welcome. My name is Dwight Gingrich. I’m married to the lovely Zonya, we have three dear daughters, and Atlanta, Georgia, has been our home since 2016. I have a couple part-time jobs teaching piano and working for Choice Books, and our family is part of Cellebration Fellowship, where I help with music ministry. I have Mennonite roots and, despite branching out a little and aiming to live first as a catholic Christian, I still carry an identity that is recognizably Anabaptist as I process life and theology. Most of my words here are written with my own heritage in mind, though I trust my words will be helpful for anyone seeking to follow Christ.

A Brief Autobiography

For those who want to know me better, here’s a super-quick telling of my life story—minus things like brief terms at Bible schools, lots of musical adventures, and various joys and heartbreaks probably best shared in person.

I was born in the lovely “near north” region of Ontario, Canada, the second son of Ken and Elaine Gingrich, with two brothers and one sister. The church of my boyhood was first associated with the Conservative Mennonite Church of Ontario, then with Midwest Mennonite Fellowship. I have fond memories of the church of my childhood and was baptized there when I was fifteen years old. My young adult life included seasons as a welder/draftsman at Kropf Industrial, a volunteer at Northern Youth Programs (1994-97), and a student at Nipissing University (1998-2003), where I graduated with bachelor’s degrees in English Literature and Education, received more musical training, and helped lead a non-denominational Christian student club.

After graduation I moved to New York City, where I was a public high school teacher in the Bronx for three years and private piano teacher in Queens for another four. During that time I re-met Zonya (we first met at Sharon Mennonite Bible Institute) and we got married in the high school auditorium over spring break. I also became increasingly active first as a trainee and then as an associate pastor at Followers of Jesus Mennonite Church, a Biblical Mennonite Alliance congregation in Brooklyn. 

This highly-formative season ended when we moved to Zonya’s home state of Iowa in 2010 to help support her parents. There we attended a Beachy Amish Mennonite Church and my work included building storage shedsselling pies at farmer’s market, and writing curriculum for Open Hands. During this time I also intentionally compiled a personal library of biblical studies books and listened to many hours of biblical teaching. Our Iowa time was an important period of reflecting on the diverse experiences of life and church we had traversed thus far. 

As I approached midlife, I decided it was time to begin sharing some of the questions and conclusions that were brewing in my heart, especially about exegesis (biblical interpretation) and ecclesiology (church theology and practice). So I made an announcement on my birthday: “I decided a good way to celebrate turning 40 would be to start a website where I could post my thoughts on the Bible and the Church—along with anything else that I might wish to foist upon the unsuspecting world. Ready or not, here I come.”

Looking back, I suppose that if anyone was not ready for all the changes that blogging would bring, it was me and my family. Blogging literally set the course of our lives as it led to an invitation to move to Atlanta, with the opportunities and challenges that have followed. Through it all, God has been faithful, and I do not regret the decision to start writing in earnest in public. To the contrary, I believe more strongly than ever that thoughtful biblical teaching in written form is a vitally-needed ministry and part of the work that God has for me to do. As I look ahead—to the next 10 years? to perhaps a book?—I am glad to entrust myself, my family, and my writing dreams to the good Shepherd of our souls.

Thank you for stopping by. I welcome your interaction and prayers as I aim to faithfully handle—and heed—God’s written word.

For Christ and his Church,
Dwight Gingrich


Website Vision

Exegesis, Ecclesiology, and Exploration.

These three words expressed my initial vision for this website, and they still describe my vision quite well.

Exegesis, because it isn’t always easy to listen well to God’s word. Ecclesiology, because we’re still learning to live as one flock under one Shepherd. And exploration, because–whether we're reading the Bible, living as Christ’s Church, or cresting 50 years old, as I'm about to do–I believe there are still fresh landscapes awaiting our discovery.

I believe we can improve the health of our churches by becoming better interpreters of the Bible. We can explore exegesis for the sake of ecclesiology. My purpose for this website, then, is to build up the church of Jesus Christ by helping her listen carefully to the Scriptures.

I'm well aware that many Christians are skeptical of such a goal. On the one hand, many think the Bible doesn't require much interpretation at all. Content with the interpretations they possess, they find the Bible clear enough. Others, however, think the Bible is such a vague, pliable, or contradictory book that it's quite meaningless to seek the right interpretation of any topic or passage. Diligent study will only reveal more layers of confusing complexity or distort the text to match our agendas.

Both groups are unlikely to see much point in a website like this. Both are likely to say, “Why waste time studying Scripture when you could be obeying its clear teachings?” One group thinks those “clear teachings” involve almost all of Scripture and the other group thinks the “clear teachings” are basically limited to the two great commandments (Matt. 22:36-40), but the result is the same: little time spent in Bible study. Why study the Bible when you can follow Jesus?

I can sympathize with both these positions, yet my understanding is different from either of them. I believe the basic gospel call–what one needs to understand to inherit eternal life–will soon be quite clear to most 1earnest, humble Bible readers. But that's different from claiming that the whole Bible is clear. So I also believe that growth in maturity, both individually and collectively, will be immensely aided by careful, prolonged investigation of Scripture. Growth in knowledge can enable growth in holiness and wholeness. Exegesis alone will never lead to good ecclesiology, but studying the Bible can help us follow Jesus.

 All the gifts of the Spirit are needed for the health of Christ’s church. Paul said that teachers are a gift to help “equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God” (Eph. 4:12-13 ESV). By the grace of God I have been given some portion of the gift of teaching. This website is one way I share with the Church the gifts that God has given to me.

  1. But consider the Ethiopian eunuch, who needed Philip’s explanation to understand the good news about Jesus (Acts 8:30-36).



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