R. T. Kendall
R. T. Kendall
|Known for||pastor at Westminster Chapel|
Robert Tillman Kendall (born June 6, 1936) is a Christian writer, speaker, and teacher who pastored Westminster Chapel for 25 years. He is author of more than 50 books, including Total Forgiveness. Kendall is currently listed as part of the Word, Spirit & Power team, a non-denominational Charismatic ministry.
Early life and family
Kendall was born June 6, 1936 in Ashland, Kentucky and named after R. T. Williams who was a General Superintendent of the Church of the Nazarene. He married Louise Wallis of Sterling, Illinois on June 28, 1958, and together they raised a son and a daughter, Robert Tillman II (TR) and Melissa Louise. According to his testimony, Kendall came to a conviction regarding Calvinist theology and his own eternal security in 1955. He received degrees at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, Tennessee (A.B., 1970), the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div., 1972) in Louisville, Kentucky and the University of Louisville (M.A., 1973) before earning a Doctor of Philosophy (DPhil) at Regent's Park College, a hall of the University of Oxford. He later received a Doctor of Divinity from Trevecca Nazarene University (1988).
While at Oxford, Kendall was pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Lower Heyford from 1974 to 1977 (now Brackley Baptist Church) which mainly served USAF families based at RAF Upper Heyford and RAF Croughton. From February 1, 1977 to February 1, 2002 he was the Minister at Westminster Chapel in London. He succeeded Dr. Glyn Owen who himself followed Martyn Lloyd-Jones and G. Campbell Morgan.
Kendall is well known for his view that later Calvinism departed from the teaching of John Calvin on the issues of assurance and the extent of the atonement. Kendall expounded his views in his D.Phil. thesis, The Nature of saving Faith, from William Perkins (d. 1602) to the Westminster Assembly (1642–1649) and his 1981 work Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649. Kendall's views prompted a response by Paul Helm, who wrote Calvin and the Calvinists in 1982.
Kendall's 1983 publication of Once Saved, Always Saved on the nature of Christian perseverance prompted debate of antinomianism among Chapel members and others. There were various disagreements over various issues. Indeed, so serious were these, that his predecessor, Lloyd-Jones, stated that Kendall should take no part in his funeral arrangements:
In the now-published account, however, Kendall says nothing of why the relationship broke down. Indeed it broke down so seriously that prior to his death, Dr Lloyd-Jones indicated that Kendall, far from organizing his funeral or memorial service, was to take no part in those proceedings.— Iain H. Murray, A review of R. T. Kendall, In Pursuit of His Glory
His charismatic beliefs and affirmation of prophecies and association with Paul Cain and the Kansas City Prophets from the early 1990s led to some controversies with some[which?] Christian groups. A longtime member of Westminster Chapel had the following testimony regarding Kendall's preaching legacy:
R.T. Kendall is a man of great authority and leadership. He has an amazing knowledge of the Scriptures and a willingness to deal with any verse in the passage preached, however difficult it might be. I can never remember hearing a sermon which did not bless me. He truly practiced what he has preached. He has sought to reach every type of person and shown increasing patience and love to difficult people. Sometimes too patient! He has always shown himself to be open and honest.— Ernest Paddon, In Pursuit of His Glory
He instigated a "Pilot Lights" scheme of church members distributing tracts and orange stickers such as "Turn on to Jesus" and "Jesus Loves You" initially led by Arthur Blessitt[clarification needed] on the streets of Westminster in different languages to the general public. These evangelism techniques were based on those of Arthur Blessitt who preached at Westminster Chapel for a few weeks along with Sherry Blessitt and their children in the late 1980s. The scheme continued for about a decade. As a result, significant number of conversions were witnessed and some even joined the congregation and became active members. Despite that, church membership declined over the same period.
His "School of Theology" evenings attracted hundreds of visitors and church leaders from all over London. He introduced Thursday lunchtime services, which were visited by workers from nearby Whitehall.
In 2002 he was introduced by the Archbishop of Canterbury's Envoy to the Middle East to meet the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Subsequently, the men met five times and RT Kendall had an opportunity to present the Christian gospel (The Christian belief that by putting their faith in Jesus Christ and His Substitutionary death by crucifixion that they will be forgiven by God, have a relationship with him on earth and go the Heaven when they die).
Kendall is now in retirement in Hendersonville, Tennessee, from where he continues his work as an author and guest speaker at Christian conferences. He appears on Christian TV programmes and is a regular contributor to Christian publications. He is also the President of R.T. Kendall Ministries.
Kendall is the author of over fifty books including:
- Kendall, R. T. (1978). Jonah: an exposition: sermons preached at Westminster Chapel, London. London: Hodder & Stoughton. OCLC 926188342.
- ——— (1979). Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649. Oxford theological monographs. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198267201. OCLC 7505253.
- ——— (1981). Believing God: studies on faith in Hebrews 11. Biblical classics library. Carlisle, England: Paternoster. ISBN 9780853646525. OCLC 33864909.
- ——— (1981). Who by Faith. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340263624. OCLC 8980298.
- ——— (1982). Tithing: A Call to Serious, Biblical Giving. London ; Grand Rapids, MI: Hodder & Stoughton ; Zondervan. OCLC 281710994.
- ——— (1983). Once Saved Always Saved. Chicago, IL: Moody Press. ISBN 9780340342534. OCLC 12462060.
- ——— (1984). Stand up and be counted : calling for public confession of faith. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340351758. OCLC 12694182.
- ——— (1986). Does Jesus Care?. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340399743. OCLC 14133459.
- ——— (1988). Is God for the Homosexual?. Basingstoke: Marshall Pickering. ISBN 9780551016002. OCLC 17260947.
- ——— (1988). He Saves: How to Become - and Stay - a Christian. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340414972. OCLC 904318083.
- ——— (1990). God Meant It for Good. Eastbourne: Kingsway. ISBN 9780860654117. OCLC 20723717.
- ——— (1990). The God of the Bible. Eastbourne: Kingsway. ISBN 9780860658085. OCLC 877330852.
- ——— (1992). Meekness and Majesty: Rediscovering Jesus. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781871676877.
- ——— (1992). The Gift of Giving. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340568910. OCLC 26358008. - republication of 'Tithing' from 1982
- ——— (1993). Before the Throne: A Comprehensive Guide to the Importance and Practice of Worship. Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
- ——— (1994). Are You Stone Deaf to the Spirit or Re-discovering God?. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian. Focus Publications.
- ——— (1995). Higher Ground: insights from the Psalms of Ascent (Psalms 120-134). Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781857921588. OCLC 34516090.
- ——— (1996). Understanding Theology - Volume I: The Means of Developing a Healthy Church in the Twenty First Century. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781857924299.
- ——— (1996). The Word and the Spirit: Reclaiming Your Covenant with the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. Eastbourne: Kingsway. ISBN 9780854764136. OCLC 59600293.
- ——— (1998). All's well that ends well: the life of Jacob. Carlisle: Paternoster Press. ISBN 978-0853-64862-8. OCLC 43031199.
- ——— (1998). Worshipping God: rediscovering the full dimension of worship. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340514863. OCLC 20417261.
- ——— (1998). When God Shows Up: staying ready for the unexpected. Carlisle, England: Paternoster Press. ISBN 9780830723409. OCLC 39692233.
- ——— (1999). The Anointing: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow. Nashville, TN: Nelson.
- ——— (1999). The Thorn in the Flesh. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340745465. OCLC 59408335.
- ——— (1999). A Vision of Jesus: The Awesome Jesus of Revelation. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publishers. ISBN 9781857923940. OCLC 44058287.
- ——— (2000). Great Christian Prayers: From the Rich History of Christian Faith - A Prayer for Every Day of the Year. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340756096. OCLC 48238479.
- ——— (2000). Understanding Theology - Volume II: The Means of Developing a Healthy Church in the Twenty First Century. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781857925371.
- ——— (2000). Just Grace. London: S.P.C.K. ISBN 9780281052240. OCLC 43541962.
- ——— (2000). The Sensitivity of the Spirit: The Forgotten Anointing. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340756287. OCLC 59458291.
- ——— (2001). A Man After God's Own Heart: God's Relationship with David - and with You. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publishers. ISBN 9781857923827. OCLC 47041873.
- ——— (2001). Understanding Theology - Volume III: The Means of Developing a Healthy Church in the Twenty First Century. Fearn, Ross-shire: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781857925814.
- ——— (2001). Justification By Works: How Works Vindicate True Faith. Sermons on James 1-3. Authentic Media. ISBN 9780853649038.
- ——— (2002). Total Forgiveness: Achieving God's Greatest Challenge. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340756393.
- ——— (2002). In Pursuit of His Glory: My 25 Years at Westminster Chapel. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340786024. OCLC 49739164.
- ——— (2002). The Way Of Wisdom: Patience In Waiting On God Sermons On James 4-5. Carlisle, England: Paternoster Press. ISBN 9781842271124. OCLC 51245104.
- ——— (2003). Between the times: Malachi, the last prophet before centuries of silence. Scotland: Christian Focus Publications. ISBN 9781857927924. OCLC 55007583.
- ——— (2003). Thanking God. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340787076. OCLC 717506803.
- ——— (2004). Pure Joy. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340861943. OCLC 53708943.
- ——— (2004). Tales of Total Forgiveness. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340863275. OCLC 61128601.
- ——— (2004). The Judgment Seat of Christ: What Will God Say to You When You Die?. Fearn, Scotland: Christian Focus Publications. OCLC 59756606.
- ——— (2004). The Complete Guide to the Parables: Understanding and Applying the Stories of Jesus. Grand Rapids, MI: Chosen Books. ISBN 9780800793586. OCLC 1028739848.
- ——— (2005). Just Say Thanks!. Lake Mary, FL: Charisma House. ISBN 9781591856276. OCLC 59149292.
- ——— (2006). Out of Your Comfort Zone: Your God Is Too Nice. New York: Warner Faith. ISBN 9780446697354. OCLC 62421122.
- ——— (2006). The Parables of Jesus. Grand Rapids, MI: Chosen Books. ISBN 9780800794583. OCLC 216937279. - republication of 'The Complete Guide to the Parables' from 2004
- ——— (2006). Your Words Have Power: controlling the tongue. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340910177. OCLC 70764617.
- ——— (2007). How to Forgive Ourselves - Totally. Lake Mary, FL: Charisma House. ISBN 9781599791739. OCLC 80359209.
- ——— (2008). Did you think to pray?. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340964095. OCLC 232712794.
- ——— (2008). The Unfailing Love of Jesus. Lake Mary, FL: Charisma House. ISBN 9781599792286. OCLC 185095636.
- ——— (2010). The Lord's Prayer. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340964149. OCLC 751795474.
- ——— (2011). The Sermon on the Mount: a verse-by-verse look at the greatest teachings of Jesus. London: Monarch Books. ISBN 9780857213341. OCLC 828180664.
- ——— (2012). The Scandal of Christianity. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340964163. OCLC 973694493.
- ——— (2012). Totally Forgiving God. London: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 9780340964170. OCLC 800853150.
- ———; Carrin, Charles; Taylor, Jack R. (2012). Word Spirit Power: what happens when you seek all God has to offer. Minneapolis, MN: Chosen Books. ISBN 9780800795269. OCLC 966556531.
- ——— (2012). Unashamed to Bear His Name. Minneapolis, MN: Chosen Books. ISBN 9780800795160. OCLC 729346752.
- ——— (2011). Why Jesus Died. Oxford: Monarch. ISBN 9780857210616. OCLC 753307528.
- ——— (2013). These are the Days of Elijah: How God Uses Ordinary People to Do Extraordinary Things. Minneapolis, MN: Chosen Books. ISBN 9780800795375. OCLC 795759432.
- ——— (2014). Holy Fire. Lake Mary, FL: Charisma House. ISBN 9781621366041. OCLC 862221999.
- ——— (2016). Prepare Your Heart for the Midnight Cry. London: S.P.C.K. ISBN 9780281077724.
Articles and Chapters
- ——— (1991). Porter, David, ed. Grace and Glory: Keswick Ministry 1991. Oxford: OM Publishing. ISBN 9781850781004.
- "Christian marketplace best-seller list". June 2003. Archived from the original on 2010-12-30.
- Word, Spirit, & Power conferences Archived 2012-01-19 at the Wayback Machine.
- "RT Kendall Ministries - FAQ". Archived from the original on 2007-01-17.
- "RT Kendall Ministries - About RT". Archived from the original on 2008-11-19.
- "RT Kendall Ministries - FAQ". Archived from the original on 2011-07-27.
- Macleod, Donald. (June 1984) The Monthly Record of the Free Church of Scotland.
- Thomas, Derek (January 1984) Evangelical Presbyterian pp. 2ff.
- Murray, Iain H. (March 1984). "Will the Unholy Be Saved?". The Banner of Truth Magazine (246): 1ff.
- Murray, Iain H. (March 2004). "'Openness to the Holy Spirit': How Westminster Chapel Was Turned Around". The Banner of Truth Magazine (486): 25–32. Archived from the original on 2007-02-17.
- Fisher, G. Richard (January–March 2004). "Is God "Showing Up" Today? The Claims and Confusion of R.T. Kendall". The Quarterly Journal.
- Alderson, Richard (1986). No Holiness, No Heaven!. Banner of Truth Trust. ISBN 0-85151-495-2.
- Kendall, R.T. (2002). In Pursuit of His Glory. Hodder & Stoughton. Foreword. ISBN 0-340-78602-7.