Jack Cottrell

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Jack Cottrell is a Christian theologian, philosopher and author in the Christian churches and churches of Christ, which are part of the Restoration Movement which also includes the Disciples of Christ and the Churches of Christ. He was a professor of theology at Cincinnati Christian University from 1967 to 2015.[1] He has authored many books on Christian philosophy, doctrine and theology.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Jack Cottrell was born in Stamping Ground, Kentucky. He married his wife Barbara in 1958 in a traditional ceremony.[3] Cottrell received a BA from Cincinnati Christian University in 1959 and also a BS from the University of Cincinnati.[4] He then earned an MDiv from Westminster Theological Seminary and a PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, NJ.[5]

Cincinnati Christian University and Writing[edit]

Cottrell returned to Cincinnati Christian University in 1967 holding a conservative view of the Bible and Christianity. He has since authored over 20 books on Christian theology and doctrine.[6] Frequent topics include grace, faith, baptism, Biblical accuracy, Biblical consistency, and the nature of God.[7][8] He has also tackled other issues including leadership and gender roles in Christianity. Cottrell has additionally authored several Biblical commentaries. His books include Baptism: A Biblical Study, The Faith Once for All: Bible Doctrine for Today, Bible Prophecy and End Times, Set Free! What the Bible Says About Grace, Tough Questions, Biblical Answers Parts One and Two, 13 Lessons on Grace and His Truth: Scriptural Truths About Basic Doctrines. He has also authored several Biblical commentaries.[9]


Cottrell supports conservative beliefs of inerrancy and infallibility of the Bible[4] and that baptism by immersion is the Biblical method.[10][11][12] Cottrell is critical of Calvinism and has mostly supported Arminianism.[13][14][15]


Dr. Cottrell believes that the "Father, Son and Spirit are distinct persons who exist simultaneously and interact with one another."[16] He rejects a false view of the Trinity called modalism which says that there are no distinctions between God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Dr. Cottrell calls modalism heretical and a "seriously false doctrine" but believes someone whom believes in it can be saved.[17]

Original Sin[edit]

Dr. Jack Cottrell denies original sin, at least in the traditional sense. He believes that Romans 5:12-18 actually states that any original sin that might have existed is wiped out by "Original Grace" given to everyone through the death and resurrection of Jesus. Thus, original sin is theoretical only, and never has any real effect on the salvation of believers.[18][19] When a person sins, they receive partial depravity. Cottrell would define partial depravity as, "no matter how evil sinners may be, they all have the ability to make a free-will choice to accept the gospel."[20]

Temporality of God[edit]

Dr. Cottrell posits that God is temporal, although not bound by time.[21][22]


Cottrell believes that baptism is, "commanded in a salvation situation."[23] Cottrell expands on this thought and states that baptism is required for salvation. He says, "Repentance and baptism are ...obedience to the gospel, and are works in the same sense that faith is.""docs.google.com"/>


Cottrell is the leading opponent in the Christian Churches and Churches of Christ of equality for women.

In the late 1980s, Cottrell became alarmed by the incursion of feminism in the church. He spent the next five years diligently searching God's Word for evidence supporting his belief in male supremacy and published his book Feminism and the Bible: An Introduction to Feminism for Christians in 1992. He summarizes the 358 page tome in this blog post, "How Feminism Invaded the Church".[2], dismissing every version of feminism, including evangelical feminism, as unscriptural.

He sits on the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. The mission of CBMW is "primarily to help the church defend against the accommodation of secular feminism." (CBMW Mission and Vision Statement) [3] As enumerated in its [Danvers Statement], CBMW is an evangelical organization that seeks to restrict women to the roles supposedly assigned to them by the Bible. Moreover, in every walk of life, men are expected to "exercise headship" while women are to "be in submission".(Danvers Statement)[4]

Cottrell laments that the monumental CBMW book Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (1991) stole the thunder of his more obscure book that came out the next year. Undaunted, he continued to research and write in opposition to feminism, eventually publishing two more books, Gender Roles and the Bible: Creation, the Fall, and Redemption: A Critique of Feminist Biblical Interpretation (1995), and Headship, Submission, and the Bible: Gender Roles in the Home (2008). He had planned a final book affirming Biblical restrictions on church participation by women but relented, because, "my other volumes were pretty much ignored on all sides, which made me feel like I would be wasting my time on it."

Like his CBMW colleagues, Cottrell couches his opposition to feminists in a defense of the authority of the Bible. He claims he doesn't hate their freedom, only their "flawed exegesis."


  1. ^ "Cincinnati Bible Seminary » Faculty". Ccuniversity.edu. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  2. ^ "Wipf and Stock Publishers". Wipfandstock.com. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  3. ^ "Jack Cottrell". copanews.org. 2009-05-27. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  4. ^ a b "What I Have Learned in 50 Years as a Theologian (Part 2)". Christian Standard. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  5. ^ "Jack Cottrell". Ccubookstore.com. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  6. ^ "Jack Cottrell Books - List of books by Jack Cottrell". Allbookstores.com. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  7. ^ Dr. Jack Cottrell. "What the Bible Says about Grace: Set Free! | College Press Publishing". Collegepress.com. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  8. ^ Daniel J. Dyke. "Sovereignty and Free Will - Jack Cottrell". Dabar.org. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  9. ^ http://www.dardapublishing.com/_books_by_dr_jack_cottrell.html
  10. ^ [1] Archived July 27, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ http://www.ridgecc.com/userFiles/856/is_baptism_the_first_step_of_obedience.pdf
  12. ^ "Zwinglian Immersionists". Thecra.org. 2004-08-22. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  13. ^ "Calvinism and the Bible: A Bibliography". Christian Standard. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  14. ^ http://www.willamette.edu/~ttalbott/Cottrell-comments.pdf
  15. ^ "Enjoying God Ministries". Enjoying God Ministries. 2006-11-06. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  16. ^ "Modalism: An Heretical View of the Trinity | Jack Cottrell". jackcottrell.com. Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  17. ^ "Modalism: An Heretical View of the Trinity | Jack Cottrell". jackcottrell.com. Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  18. ^ http://jackcottrell.com/notes/depravity-total-partial-or-none-at-all/
  19. ^ "The Faith Once for All" (pp. 197-200)
  20. ^ "Depravity: Total, Partial, or None at All? | Jack Cottrell". jackcottrell.com. Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  21. ^ Cottrell, Jack (2000-09-04). What the Bible Says About God the Redeemer. Wipf and Stock Publishers. ISBN 9781579105235.
  22. ^ Grudem, Wayne A. (2011-02-01). Making Sense of Who God Is: One of Seven Parts from Grudem's Systematic Theology. HarperCollins Christian Publishing. ISBN 9780310493785.
  23. ^ https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hTLkr_7tJ5jarvZIqEL2YZEIeFO7r6UEKQ3USKafQko/edit?hl=en