Dr. Jonathan Burnside is Fellow for Biblical Law with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
He is Professor of Biblical Law at the Law School, University of Bristol, where he teaches Criminal Law, Jewish Law and Jurisprudence. His work focuses on the interface and tensions that arise between law, religion and society. His academic expertise in three disciplines – Law, Criminology and Biblical Studies – has enabled him, over the past 25 years, to address some of the issues presented by relating faith-based norms to politics and society. In particular, he is interested in how faith-based bodies of law vie to govern normative behaviour in ways that may coincide or conflict with the dominant legal order.
His knowledge exchange with the Ezra Institute reflects his long-standing commitment to exploring how biblical ideas about law, legality and justice can be related to modern public policy. This is seen in his early work for the Jubilee Policy Group on Relational Justice, described by then Law Lord (and later Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales), Lord Woolf, as “extremely important.” He was appointed by the Home Office to lead an evaluation of faith-based units (FBUs) in prisons, which was the first in-depth empirical study of this phenomenon. He has since expanded this to include prisons in other parts of the world. He has served as Independent Advisor to the Correctional Services Accreditation Panel (Ministry of Justice) and the National Offender Management Service. He is a past David Patterson Visiting Fellow in Jewish Law at the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Sir Harry Gibbs Visiting Fellow in Law at Emmanuel College, University of Queensland and T. C. Beirne Distinguished Visiting Fellow, School of Law, University of Queensland.
He publishes in a range of academic journals including the Journal of Biblical Literature, Journal for the Study of the Old Testament, Oxford Journal of Law and Religion and Vetus Testamentum. His most recent monograph on biblical law, God, Justice and Society, was welcomed by senior practitioners, including a Lord Justice of Appeal in the Court of Appeal (and later member of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom) who said it made “a convincing case for the contemporary relevance of the study of biblical law… which deserves to inform and provoke legal, sociological and theological debate.”
Ph.D. (Law) Faculty of Law, University of Liverpool
M. Phil. (Criminology) Institute of Criminology/Trinity College, University of Cambridge
BA Hons. (Law) Trinity College, University of Cambridge
God, Justice and Society: Aspects of Law and Legality in the Bible (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010).
My Brother’s Keeper: Faith-based units in prison (with Joanna Adler, Nancy Loucks and Gerry Rose; Routledge/Willan, 2005).
The Signs of Sin: Seriousness of Offence in Biblical Law (Continuum, 2003).
Relational Justice: Repairing the Breach (edited with Nicola Baker, Waterside, 1994/2004).
Dr. Ted Fenske is Fellow for Medicine and Public Christianity with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
He is Clinical Professor with the Division of Cardiology at the University of Alberta, staff cardiologist at the C.K. Hui Heart Centre, and an executive member of the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity and the Christian Medical/Dental Society.
Referring to himself in his hospital role as ‘a sheep in wolf’s clothing,’ Ted endeavors to shine God’s light in dark places of need and provide compassionate care for his patients, asserting that his personal faith in Christ has been the focus and foundation of his practice.
Ted is a regular contributor to the Canadian Journal of Continuing Medical Education, Perspectives in Cardiology, and several other scholarly journals, as well as contributing to FOCUS magazine, the Christian Medical/Dental Society publication on the intersection of Christian belief and medical practice. He has given numerous talks in public forums on a broad range of topics, including Christian apologetics, countering euthanasia, theodicy, gender confusion, and addressing the gay gospel.
Formerly from Vancouver, he is the proud father of three sons and content to call Edmonton ‘home,’ where he is actively involved with his wife in the Christian community and Young Adult ministry. In his spare time, Ted enjoys playing guitar, skiing, and running marathons.
Cardiology Fellowship in Echocardiography: University of Alberta, Division of Cardiology, 1996-97.
Certificate of Special Competence, Cardiology: RoyalCollege of Physicians of Canada, November 1996.
Cardiology Residency: University of Alberta, Division of Cardiology, 1994-96.
Specialist Certification in Internal Medicine (FRCPC) June 1995.
Internal Medicine ‘TIPS’ Teaching Certification, 1992.
Internal Medicine Residency: University of Alberta, Faculty of Medicine, 1991-94.
Advanced Trauma and Life Support Certificate, 1991.
Rotating Internship: Charles Camsell General Hospital, Alberta, 1990-91.
MD Graduate with Clinical Distinction: University of British Columbia, 1986-90.
Advanced Cardiac Life Support Instructor, 1987.
Bachelors of Science in Biochemistry, University of Victoria, 1982-86
While You Diet: The Skinny on Reducing Your Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke. Foreword by A. M. Sharma, MD/ PhD. 4th Floor Press, Calgary, © 2012.
Killing Me Softly? Euthanasia and the desire for so-called dignity. Focus Magazine CMDS Publication. June 2012; Volume 32(Issue 2):18-19
Dr. Michael A.G. Haykin is Fellow for Church History and Christian Spirituality with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
He is currently the Professor of Church History and Biblical Spirituality at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is also the Director of The Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies, located on the campus of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and the editor of Eusebeia: The Bulletin of The Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies.
Michael served as editor for The Life and Thought of John Gill (1697-1771): A Tercentennial Appreciation (E.J. Brill, 1997) and The British Particular Baptists, 1638-1910. 3 Volumes (Particular Baptist Press, 1998, 2000, 2003).
Th.D. in Church History from the University of Toronto and Wycliffe College (1982).
M.Rel. from Wycliffe College, the University of Toronto (1977)
B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Toronto (1974)
Ambassador Dennis J. Ignatius is Fellow for Intercultural Discourse and Global Affairs with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity. A Malaysian career diplomat, Dennis has served in London, Beijing and Washington before being appointed ambassador to Chile in 1992, Argentina in 1996 and Canada in 2001. He was also concurrently accredited to Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Paraguay and Uruguay. He retired from the foreign service in 2008.
Dennis had a dramatic encounter with the Lord Jesus Christ on Embassy Row in Washington D.C. in 1986 that radically changed his life. Since then, he has preached the Gospel and ministered at churches and conferences and testified about his faith in Jesus to political and business leaders in Latin America, the United States, Canada, Europe and Malaysia.
He is currently an itinerant minister and motivational speaker. His passion is to see believers transformed by the power of the Gospel and walking out their full calling as ambassadors for Christ. His Christian ministry, Arise Ambassadors, is dedicated to helping believers pursue God with passion, serve God with excellence and honour God with a life lived well.
He is the author of Fire Begets Fire, a book about the passionate pursuit of God. His biweekly email devotional, Fuel For The Fire, has an international circulation.
Dennis is also an international affairs columnist as well as diplomatic advisor to First Step Forum, a Helsinki-based group of Christian professionals, business leaders and politicians committed to helping persecuted Christians by building bridges and promoting dialogue with national governments.
Dennis and his wife, Cherry, divide their time between Ottawa, Canada and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Dr. Peter Jones is Fellow for New Testament Theology and Christian Worldview with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity. Associate Pastor at New Life Presbyterian Church (Escondido, CA), Director of truthXchange and Scholar in Residence at Westminster Seminary, CA. Born in Liverpool (and a friend of John Lennon), Peter attended the University of Wales, then did his graduate work at Gordon Divinity School, Harvard Divinity School and Princeton Seminary.
In 1971, he married Rebecca Clowney and by early 1974, they had moved to France as one of three missionaries commissioned by the first General Assembly of the newly-formed Presbyterian Church in America. For nearly eighteen years, Peter taught at the Reformed Seminary in Aix-en-Provence, while also leading a church-planting team and serving as president of a board that began a Christian school. The Jones family was also privileged to introduce to France a tool for communicating with the deaf, Cued Speech.
In 1991, Peter accepted a position as New Testament professor at Westminster Seminary, CA. The shock of seeing, on his return, the vast spiritual changes that had occurred in the US led him to begin studying the “New Age.” He began researching, analyzing and writing about the upsurge of pagan spirituality in the US. In 2003, he resigned his teaching position at Westminster Seminary to found truthXchange (originally Christian Witness to a Pagan Planet). Since then, he has worked full-time, speaking and writing about what has now become the “spiritual but not religious” movement that has so heavily influenced the upcoming generations.
Peter is the author of several books, including The Gnostic Empire Strikes Back (1992), Spirit Wars (1997), Gospel Truth/Pagan Lies (1999), Capturing the Pagan Mind (2003), Cracking DaVinci’s Code (2004, co-author, James Garlow), Stolen Identity (2006), The God of Sex (2006), One or Two: Seeing a World of Difference (2010) and The Other Worldview (2015)
truthXchange equips and empowers the church to communicate the gospel lovingly and effectively to a culture that has lost the crucial distinction between worshiping creation and worshiping the Triune God.
Peter and Rebecca have seven children and numerous grandchildren.
Prof. Dr. Willem J. Ouweneel is Fellow for Systematic Theology with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
Willem was one of the founders of the Evangelical College (Evangelische Hogeschool) at Amersfoort, the Netherlands, where he taught until his retirement in 2009. From 1990 to 1997, he served as professor in the philosophy of the natural sciences at the Potchefstroom University for Christian Higher Education (South Africa). From 1995 to 2014, he was a professor on the Evangelical Theological Faculty in Leuven (Belgium). From 1996 until 2001, he taught philosophy, theology, and psychology at the State-Independent Theological Seminary in Basel, Switzerland.
Prior to his work in theology and philosophy, Willem taught biology and engaged in research on genetics and embryology, and served as chief editor of the scholarly journal Bible and Science (Bijbel en Wetenschap) until 2001.
Beginning in 2014 Willem released a series of academic introductory works with Paideia Press on thinking as a Christian about the academic disciplines of Theology, Philosophy, Psychology, Political Science and History. His latest book, The World is Christ’s: A Critique of Two Kingdoms Theology, published by Ezra Press, is a thorough review of the historical, logical, and exegetical considerations surrounding the Two Kingdoms controversy, and helps readers understand that everything we do is an act of worship – the issue is whether our worship is directed towards God or away from him. Willem continues to write prolifically and maintains an active speaking and preaching calendar around the world.
Ph.D.: Theology, Theology, University of the Orange Free State, 1993
Ph.D.: Philosophy, Free University of Amsterdam, 1986
Ph.D: Biology, University of Utrecht, 1970
Rev. Dr. David Robinson is Fellow for Patristics and Pastoral Theology with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity, and Senior Pastor at Westminster Chapel, Toronto.
David has a Ph.D. in Theology from the University of St. Michael's College (at the University of Toronto), where he studied the history and theology of Early Christianity. His doctoral dissertation translated and analyzed an early Christian commentary on the book of Revelation. He has presented papers at various academic conferences and has published articles in Studia Patristica, Worship, Theoforum, Humanitas, and Revista Vida y Espiritualidad. David also serves as the Ontario/Quebec regional president of Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) and as senior fellow for the Centre for Ancient Christian Studies. David teaches courses in historical theology and biblical studies at Tyndale University College.
He lives in Toronto with his wife Megan and three children, Samuel, Leah and Lucas.
Rev. Dr. P. Andrew Sandlin is Fellow for Public Theology and Cultural Philosophy with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
André Schutten is Fellow for Law and Civil Discourse with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
André is Director of Law & Policy and General Legal Counsel for ARPA Canada, the Association for Reformed Political Action. He researches and writes on public policy, particularly from a Christian perspective, and conducts regular analysis on the impact of different government bills and court judgments. He also acts as a Parliamentary lobbyist. He has represented ARPA Canada in various court interventions, having made written arguments before the Supreme Court of Canada three times and written and oral arguments in three provincial courts of appeal.
He previously worked as an intern for the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada and for the Centre for Faith and Public Life, where he covered freedom of religion issues, wrote legal opinions on abortion legislation, and prepared written arguments for the Supreme Court of Canada. He was called to the Ontario Bar on June 21, 2011.He, his wife Karyn and their son Gabriel live in Gatineau, Québec and are active members of Jubilee Church, a Canadian Reformed Church in Ottawa where André serves as an ordained elder and a part-time, wannabe organist. In his spare time, André trains with the Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa, an Infantry Reserve unit in the Canadian Armed Forces.
LL.M: University of Toronto, 2013
LL.B: University of Ottawa, 2010
BA: McMaster University, 2007
“Whatcott and Hate Speech: Rethinking Freedom of Expression in the Charter Age,” National Journal of Constitutional Law 04/2015, Volume 34, Issue 1, p. 1 (2015)
“Lethal Discrimination: A Case Against Legalizing Assisted Suicide in Canada,” Supreme Court Law Review, 2nd Series, vol. 73 (2016)
Daniel Francois Malherbe (Danie) Strauss is Fellow for Reformational Philosophy with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity.
He is the world's leading expert on the theory of modal aspects, one of the core features of the thought of the Dutch philosopher, Herman Dooyeweerd, and the movement for Reformational philosophy.
A native of South Africa, Danie taught philosophy at the University of the Orange Free State in South Africa beginning in 1971, and was appointed head of the Department of Philosophy in 1977. In 1994 he relocated to Canada, where he taught philosophy at Redeemer University College, and also served as director of the Dooyeweerd Centre. There, he initiated the publication of the collected works of Herman Dooyeweerd in English. He returned to South Africa in 1997 and until 2001 served as Dean of the new Faculty of Humanities at the UFS. Since 2013 Danie has been a Research Fellow at the School of Philosophy, North West University, Potchefstroom.
Danie has published hundreds of peer-reviewed articles throughout his career, exploring the significance of shared philosophical problems for twelve different academic disciplines. He has also authored several books. Perhaps his most notable publication is his book Philosophy: Discipline of the Disciplines, winner of the 2011 Herman Dooyeweerd prize from the Christian Philosophy Conference.
Danie lives with his wife in South Africa and enjoys music, movies and card tricks in his spare time.
Ph.D.: Philosophy, Free University of Amsterdam, 1973
MA: Philosophy, University of the Orange Free State, 1969
BA: History, Mathematics and Philosophy, University of the Orange Free State, 1967
A more extensive list of Danie’s research can be found at http://daniestrauss.com/.
Jeffery Ventrella, J.D., Ph.D. is Fellow for Jurisprudence and Political Thought with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity and Senior Vice President of the Alliance Defense Fund.
Jeffery regularly lectures in churches, campuses, and conferences throughout the United States and has lectured on six continents. After graduating first in his high school class, he received the B.M.E. degree (magna cum laude) from the University of Northern Colorado where he specialized in trumpet performance. He then attended law school, and after serving as the Production Editor for the Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly, he received the Juris Doctorate degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. He received the Doctorate of Philosophy in Church and State Studies from Whitefield Theological Seminary.
Serving ADF on the Advisory Cabinet and as the Senior Vice-President of the Office of Strategic Training, Dr. Ventrella oversees the design and implementation of the Blackstone Legal Fellowship and ADF Legal Academy programs. He also engages the culture through formal debate, media interviews, and serves as an “approved speaker” for The Federalist Society. Prior to joining the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) in 2000, Dr. Ventrella litigated for nearly 15 years, concentrating his work in complex commercial and insurance litigation, financial litigation, environmental and natural resource litigation, and appellate advocacy. He has presented numerous seminars for a number of organizations, including the Idaho State Bar, regarding a host of topics including motion practice, discovery practice, boundary law, legal reasoning and appellate advocacy. He is a member of the Idaho State Bar and is also admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the Bar of the United States Supreme Court.
Dr. Ventrella has testified before a Senate subcommittee concerning the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment and his professional writings have appeared in legal journals, law reviews, and periodicals, such as For the Defense as well as Christian publications such as Citizen Magazine, Penpoint, Fidelity, Christian Culture, Creation Answers, and New Horizons. He is a contributing author to several books, including: The Idaho Appellate Handbook (3rd Ed.); The Standard Bearer (2001); Thine is the Kingdom (2003); Backbone of the Bible (2004); and Speaking the Truth in Love: The Theology of John M. Frame (2009). In 2006, he served as an expert commentator for a two-part History Channel program exploring the role of the Ten Commandments in culture and law. His book, The Cathedral Builder: Pursuing Cultural Beauty (2007) is part of ADF’s Blackstone Core Curriculum Project, which he also edits. He is the author of Church and Culture: Isolation, Accommodation, or Transformation? (2012), a booklet exploring how the church ought to function in the world between the Cross and the Consummation.
As an adjunct instructor, Dr. Ventrella taught Ethics and Apologetics at the graduate seminary level. He has held formal ordinations in the CRC and the OPC and currently serves as a Research Fellow and on an ad hoc graduate thesis committee for the Department of Philosophy and Constitutional Law for the University of the Free State, South Africa. Dr. Ventrella is also a Distinguished Fellow of Law and Culture for the Center for Cultural Leadership and a Fellow with the Ezra Institute for Contemporary Christianity. The truthXchange appointed him Senior Fellow in 2014. His martial arts training achieved the rank of 2nd degree black belt, Tae Kwon-do. Dr. Ventrella is married, and with his wife, Heather, enjoys the challenge of rearing four very active boys and one beautiful daughter: Jefferson, Chandler, Kirklan, Jackson, and McKenzie.
B.M.E. (magna cum laude) in performance trumpet, University of Northern Colorado
J.D. University of California, Hastings College of the Law
Ph.D. in Church and State Studies from Whitefield Theological Seminary