Jeremy Begbie

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Jeremy Begbie

Jeremy Sutherland Begbie

(1957-06-15) 15 June 1957 (age 66)
Ecclesiastical career
ReligionChristianity (Anglican)
ChurchChurch of England
Ordained1983 (priest)
Academic background
Alma mater
ThesisTheology, Ontology and the Philosophy of Art, with Special Reference to Paul Tillich and the Dutch Neo-Calvinists (1987)
Doctoral advisorJ. B. Torrance
Academic work
Main interestsMusic and theology Edit this at Wikidata
Jeremy Begbie conducting the New Caritas Orchestra, September 2022

Jeremy Sutherland Begbie, BA, BD, PhD, LRAM, ARCM, FRSCM (born 1957)[1] is Thomas A. Langford Distinguished Research Professor of Theology at Duke Divinity School, Duke University, where he is the McDonald Agape Director of Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts. He is a systematic theologian whose primary research interest is the correlation between theology and the arts, in particular the interplay between music and theology. He is also an Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge.[2]


Begbie was born on 15 June 1957.[3] He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and music at the University of Edinburgh and Bachelor of Divinity and Doctor of Philosophy degree at the University of Aberdeen.[2]

He was ordained priest in the Church of England in 1981,[2] and served a Curate in the Diocese of Guildford. Prior to teaching at Duke Divinity School, he was the Associate Principal of Ridley Hall, Cambridge, as well as an Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge. From 2000, he was an Honorary Professor at the Institute for Theology, Imagination, and the Arts at St Mary's College, University of St Andrews, in Scotland, and was the Associate Director of the Institute. In 2009 he was appointed Thomas A. Langford Research Professor of Theology at Duke University.[2] He is a Senior Member of Wolfson College, Cambridge.[4]

Being a professionally trained musician, he has performed as a pianist, oboist, and a conductor.[4] He is founder of the New Caritas Orchestra, a group professional players of faith in the United States.

Begbie has lectured worldwide, delivering multi-media presentations in venues all over the UK, as well as in the USA, Canada, Hong Kong, Germany, Israel, South Arfirca, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia.

The New Testament scholar, N T Wright, has written: “Jeremy Begbie is a musician/theologian par excellence. Whatever music you enjoy and wherever you are on the journey of faith, he will delight, surprise, challenge, and inspire you.”


Jeremy Begbie is known for his writing and lecturing in theology and the arts, especially music.

In September 1997 he founded the Theology Through the Arts project at the University of Cambridge, whose primary aim was "to discover and demonstrate ways in which the arts can contribute towards the renewal of Christian theology". The project included conversation among artists and theologians, academic lectures, publications, and an international arts festival held in Cambridge in 2000.

As the Thomas A. Langford Research Professor of Theology at Duke Divinity School, he founded Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts (DITA), a project which "promotes and supports the vibrant interplay between Christian theology and the arts by encouraging transformative leadership and enriching theological discussion in the Church, academy, and society."[5]

For his book, Resounding Truth: Christian Wisdom in the World of Music, Begbie won the 2008 Christianity Today Book Award in the theology/ethics category.[6]



  • Voicing Creation's Praise: Towards A Theology of the Arts, T&T Clark, 1991.
  • Beholding the Glory: Incarnation Through the Arts (ed.), DLT/Baker Books, 2000.
  • Theology, Music and Time, Cambridge University Press, 2000.
  • Sounding the Depths: Theology Through the Arts (ed.), SCM Press, 2002.
  • Resounding Truth: Christian Wisdom in the World of Music, Baker Academic, 2007.
  • Resonant Witness: Conversations Between Theology and Music (co ed.), Eerdmans, 2011.
  • Art, Imagination and Christian Hope: Patterns of Promise (co ed.), Ashgate, 2012.
  • Music, Modernity, and God, Oxford University Press, 2013.
  • Redeeming Transcendence: Bearing Witness to the Triune God, Eerdmans, 2018.
  • A Peculiar Orthodoxy: Reflections on Theology and the Arts, Baker Academic, 2018.
  • Theology, Music, and Modernity: Struggles for Freedom, (co ed.), Oxford University Press, 2021.
  • The Art of New Creation: Trajectories in Theology and the Arts (co ed.), IVP, 2021.
  • Abundantly More: Theology and the Arts in a Reductionist World, Baker Academic, 2023.

Selected articles[edit]

  • "Who Is This God?--Biblical Inspiration Revisited.” Tyndale Bulletin 43, 2 (November 1992): 259-282.
  • "The Theological Potential of Music: A Response to Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin.” Christian Scholar's Review 33, 1 (Fall 2003): 135-141.
  • “On the Strange Place of Contemporary Art,” article review of On the Strange Place of Religion in Contemporary Art, James Elkins (New York: Routledge, 2004) and God in the Gallery: A Christian Embrace of Modern Art, Daniel Siedell (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2008), in Image Journal, Iss. 64 (December 2009): 105–13.
  • “Modelling Harmony: Music, Theology and Peace-Building” in Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology, 71.1 (January 2017)
  • “An Awkward Witness in a Worded World: Music and the Reformation” in The Protestant Reformation of the Church and the World, eds. John Witte and Amy Wheeler (Louisville: Kentucky, WJK, 2018), pp. 71-8.
  • “Making the Familiar Unfamiliar: Macmillan’s St Luke Passion” in James Macmillan Studies, eds. George Parsons and Robert Sholl (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020) pp. 111‒128.
  • “Scripture in Sound” in Hearing and Doing the Word: The Drama of Evangelical Hermeneutics?, eds. Daniel J. Treier and Douglas A. Sweeney (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2021), pp. 287–302.
  • “Theologie für Bach und Bach für die Theologie,” Bach unter den Theologen: Themen, Thesen, Temperamente, ed. Ingo Bredenbach, Volker Leppin, und Christoph Schwöbel (Mohr Siebeck, 2022), 227-256.

Selected chapters[edit]

  • "Through Music: Sound Mix." In Beholding the Glory: Incarnation Through the Arts, ed. Jeremy Begbie. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2000.
  • "Unexplored Eloquencies: Music, Media, Religion and Culture." In Mediating Religion: Conversations in Media, Religion and Culture, eds. Jolyon Mitchell and Sophia Marriage. London: T&T Clark, 2003.
  • "Beauty, Sentimentality and the Arts." In The Beauty of God: Theology and the Arts, eds. Daniel J. Treier, Mark Husbands and Roger Lundin. Downers Grove: IVP, 2007.
  • "Created Beauty: The Witness of J.S. Bach." In The Beauty of God: Theology and the Arts, eds. Daniel J. Treier, Mark Husbands and Roger Lundin. Downers Grove: IVP, 2007.
  • "The Sense of an Ending." In A Place for Truth: Leading Thinkers Explore Life's Hardest Questions, ed. Dallas Willard. Downers Grove: IVP, 2010.
  • "The Future: Looking to the Future: A Hopeful Subversion." In For the Beauty of the Church: Casting a Vision for the Arts, ed. W. David O. Taylor. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2010.
  • "The Shape of Things to Come?: Wright Amidst Emerging Ecclesiologies." In Jesus, Paul, and the People of God: A Theological Dialogue with N.T. Wright, eds. Nicholas Perrin and Richard B. Hays. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2011.
  • "Confidence and Anxiety in Elgar's Dream of Gerontius." In Music and Theology in Nineteenth-Century Britain, ed. Martin Clarke. Burlington: Ashgate, 2012.
  • '"A Semblance More Lucid"? in An Exploration of Trinitarian Space', in George Westhaver (ed.), A Transforming Vision, London: SCM Press, 2018.
  • Begbie, Jeremy. "“There before Us”: New Creation in Theology and the Arts." In The Art of New Creation: Trajectories in Theology and the Arts, edited by Jeremy Begbie, Daniel Train and W. David O. Taylor, Downers Grove, Illinois: IVP, 2022.


  1. ^ "Jeremy Begbie", Contemporary Authors Online, Detroit: Gale, 2010
  2. ^ a b c d "Jeremy Begbie | Duke Divinity School". Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  3. ^[bare URL PDF]
  4. ^ a b "Prof Jeremy Begbie". 13 September 2013. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
  5. ^ "Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts". Retrieved 18 July 2021.
  6. ^ "2000-2009 Christianity Today Book Awards". Christianity Today International. 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2011.

External links[edit]