Institute for Studies of Religion                                                          

Baylor University                                                                                

One Bear Place #97236

Waco, TX 76798




Clare College, University of Cambridge, England (1970-78)


            1978                Ph.D.   (History), University of Cambridge.

            1978                M.A.    University of Cambridge.

            1974                B.A. (Hons.), University of Cambridge. Double First-Class Honors

                                    (Part 1, History; Part 2, Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic Studies).





2012-present                Distinguished Professor of History, Baylor University; and Co-Director for the Program on Historical Studies of Religion, Institute for Studies of Religion, Baylor University.


2012-present                Emeritus Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Humanities, Pennsylvania State University.


2009-2011                    Distinguished Senior Fellow, Institute for Studies of Religion, Baylor University.


2007-2011                    Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Humanities, Pennsylvania State University.


1997-2007                    Distinguished Professor of History and Religious Studies, Pennsylvania State University.


1993-97           Professor of History and Religious Studies, Pennsylvania State University.


1992-98           Director, Religious Studies Program, Pennsylvania State University.


1989-93           Professor of Criminal Justice and American Studies, Pennsylvania State University.


1984-89           Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, Pennsylvania State University.


1980-84           Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, Pennsylvania State University.


1977-80           Research Officer on an Oxford and Cambridge project on the history of the English criminal law 1790-1914.





I have published thirty sole-authored books, and about 120 book chapters and refereed articles.


My books have been widely reviewed.


To date, my books have been translated into sixteen languages: Chinese, Dutch, Estonian, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Macedonian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovenian and Spanish.




Climate, Catastrophe, and Faith: How Changes in Climate Drive Religious Upheaval

New York: Oxford University Press, 2021: 257 pages.


Fertility and Faith: The Demographic Revolution That Is Transforming All The World’s Religions.

Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2020: 262 pages.


Rethinking a Nation: The United States in the 21st Century.

London: Macmillan/Red Globe, 2019: 276 pages.


Crucible of Faith: The Ancient Revolution That Made Our Modern Religious World

New York: Basic Books, 2017: 303 pages.


The Many Faces of Christ: The Thousand-Year Story of the Survival and Influence of the Lost Gospels

New York: Basic Books, 2015: 326 pages.

            This is currently being translated into Russian.


The Great and Holy War: How World War I Became a Religious Crusade

San Francisco: HarperOne, 2014: 448 pages.


Chiesa Globale: La Nuova Mappa

Bologna, Italy: EMI/Editrice Missionaria Italiana, 2014: 64 pages.

This appeared in English as The New Map of the Global Church (Crossroad 2017)


Laying Down the Sword: Why We Can’t Ignore the Bible’s Violent Verses

San Francisco: HarperOne, 2011. 310 pages.

The Russian edition appeared as Voyni Za Boga (Moscow: Eksmo, 2013): 446 pages.


Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, And Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe For The Next 1,500 Years

San Francisco: HarperOne, 2010. 328 pages.

A Polish edition appeared as Wojny w Imieniu Jezusa (Warsaw: Bellona, 2011).

The Portuguese edition appeared as Guerras Santas (São Paulo, Brazil: Leya, 2013): 351 pages.

This book is also being translated into Russian.


The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia--and How It Died

San Francisco: HarperOne, 2008. 315 pages.

A German version of this book appeared as Das goldene Zeitalter des Christentums: Die vergessene Geschichte der größten Weltreligion (Freiburg: Herder, 2010).

The Dutch version is Het vergeten Christendom: De duizendjarige bloeitijd van de kerk in het Midden-Oosten, Afrika en Azië (Amsterdam: Nieuw Amsterdam, 2011).

The Italian edition appeared as La Storia Perduta del Cristianesimo (Rome: EMI, 2016): 352 pages

This book is also being translated into Spanish, Japanese and Korean.


God’s Continent: Christianity, Islam and Europe’s Religious Crisis

New York: Oxford University Press, 2007. 340 pages.

This book also appeared in German, as Gottes Kontinent? Über die religiöse Krise Europas und die Zukunft von Islam und Christentum (Freiburg: Herder, 2008).

The Italian edition appeared as Il Dio dell'Europa: Il cristianesimo e l'islam in un continente che cambia (Editrice Missionaria Italian, 2009)

The Dutch edition is Gods Wereld Deel (Amsterdam: Nieuw Amsterdam, 2010)


The New Faces of Christianity: Believing the Bible in the Global South

New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. 252 pages.

The Italian edition appeared as I Nuovi Volti del Cristianesimo (Milan: Vita e Pensiero, 2006).


Decade of Nightmares: The End of the 1960s and the Making of Eighties America

New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. 344 pages.


Dream Catchers: How Mainstream America Discovered Native Spirituality

New York: Oxford University Press, 2004. 306 pages.


The New Anti-Catholicism: The Last Acceptable Prejudice

New York: Oxford University Press, 2003. 258 pages

This book is being translated into Polish.


Images of Terror: What We Can And Can't Know About Terrorism

Hawthorne, NY: Aldine De Gruyter, 2003. 227 pages


The Next Christendom: The Rise of Global Christianity

New York: Oxford University Press, 2002. 270 pages.

A second expanded edition was published by Oxford in 2007 (316 pages).

The third edition appeared from Oxford in 2011 (346 pages)

This book is also being translated into several other languages, including Portuguese and Slovenian.

The Chinese edition appeared from New Century Publishing (Taiwan) in 2003: 319 pages

The Italian edition appeared as La Terza Chiesa (Rome: Fazi Editore, 2004): 377 pages

The German edition appeared as Die Zukunft des Christentums (Giessen: Brunnen-Verlag, 2006): 384 pages

The Polish edition appeared as Chrześcijaństwo Przyszłości (Warsaw: Verbinium, 2009)

The Korean edition appeared in 2009


Hidden Gospels: How the Search for Jesus Lost Its Way

New York: Oxford University Press, 2001. 260 pages.


Beyond Tolerance: Child Pornography on the Internet

New York University Press, 2001. 259 pages.


Mystics and Messiahs: Cults and New Religions in American History

New York: Oxford University Press, 2000. 294 pages.


Synthetic Panics: The Politics of Designer Drugs

New York University Press, 1999. 247 pages.


The Cold War at Home: The Red Scare in Pennsylvania 1945-1960

Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1999. 271 pages.


Moral Panic: Changing Concepts of the Child Molester in Modern America

New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1998. 302 pages.


Hoods and Shirts: The Extreme Right in Pennsylvania 1925-1950.

Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1997. 343 pages.


A History of the United States

London: Macmillan / New York: St.Martin’s Press, 1997. 317 pages.

Second edition, London: Palgrave Press, 2002: 330 pages.

Third edition, London: Palgrave, 2007: 338 pages.

Fourth edition, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012: 336 pages.

Fifth edition, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017: 299 pages.

This book is being translated into several other languages, including Latvian, Macedonian, Serbian and Portuguese.

The Spanish edition appeared from Madrid's Alianza Editorial in 2002: 409 pages.

A second Spanish edition appeared in 2005: 431 pages.

Third Spanish edition 2009: 452 pages.

Fourth Spanish edition, 2012: 510 pages.

The Romanian edition, O Istorie A Statelor Unite, appeared from Bucharest’s Editura Artemis in 2002: 286 pages.

The Estonian edition was published as Ameerika Ühendriikide Ajalugu  (Tallinn, Estonia: Kirjastus Valgus, 2005): 308 pages.

The Polish translation appeared under the title Historia Stanów Zjednoczonych (Krakow: Jagiellonian University Press, 2009): 302 pages.


Pedophiles and Priests: Anatomy of a Social Crisis.

New York: Oxford University Press, 1996. 214 pages.


Using Murder: The Social Construction of Serial Homicide

Hawthorne, NY: Aldine de Gruyter, 1994. 262 pages


Intimate Enemies: Moral Panics in Contemporary Great Britain

Hawthorne, NY: Aldine de Gruyter, 1992. 262 pages.


A History of Modern Wales 1536-1990

London: Longmans, 1992. 451 pages.


Crime and Justice: Issues and Ideas

Monterey, CA: Brooks-Cole, 1984. 211 pages.


The Making of a Ruling Class: The Glamorgan Gentry 1640-1790

Cambridge University Press, 1983. 353 pages.


Archbishop Maurice Couve de Murville and Philip Jenkins, Catholic Cambridge

London: Catholic Truth Society, 1983. 149 pages.


Edited Books


Philip Jenkins ed., Remembering Armageddon: Religion and the First World War

Waco TX: ISR Books, 2015. 116 pages.


Ernst Schürer, Manfred Keune and Philip Jenkins, eds., The Berlin Wall: Representations and Perspectives

New York: Peter Lang, 1996. 388 pages.


Ernst Schürer and Philip Jenkins, eds., B. Traven: Life and Work

University Park, PA: Penn State Press, 1987. 368 pages.


Book Chapters and Refereed Articles


Selected examples:


Foreword, in Jehu Hanciles, Migration and the Making of Global Christianity (Eerdmans 2021): xi-xiii


Foreword, in Mitri Raheb and Mark Lamport, eds., Handbook of Christianity in the Middle East (Rowman and Littlefield, 2021: xxxv-xxxvii


The Great War and the Holy War, in Frieder Ludwig, ed., The First World War As a Turning Point (Münster, Germany: Lit Verlag, 2020): 37-49


Trading in Faith: Christianity and Globalization,  Review essay of several books on Global Christianity, Journal of World History 31(1)(2020): 253-262


The Politics of Persecuted Religious Minorities, in James P. MacGuire, ed., International Religious Freedom (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2019): 99-110 (reprinted)


Evangelicals and Globalization, in Andrew Atherstone and David Ceri Jones, eds., The Routledge Research Companion to the History of Evangelicalism (New York: Routledge, 2019): 267-280


 Up on the Downs, Journal of the John Masefield Society, 27 (2018): 29-32


Introduction, to Mark A. Lamport, ed., Encyclopedia of Christianity in the Global South (Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2018), vol I, xli-xlii


Infidels, Demons, Witches and Quakers: The Affair of Colonel Bowen, Fides et Historia 49(2)(2017): 1-15


The Western Frontier: Euro-Islam and the Remaking of Global Faith, in Evelyne A. Reisacher, ed., Dynamics of Muslim Worlds (Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 2017): 37-56


Mark Noll and Global Faith, Fides et Historia, 48(2016): 29-35


Ein globaler religiöser Klimawandel: Wie die demografische Entwicklung die christliche Mission verändert, Interrkulturelle Theologie 1(2016): 55-70


What hath Wittenberg to do with Lagos? Sixteenth-Century Protestantism and Global South Christianity Today, in Thomas Albert Howard and Mark A. Noll, eds., Protestantism after 500 Years (New York: Oxford University Press 2016), 208-27


 The Legacy of Christendom, in Lamin Sanneh and Michael McClymond, eds., The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to World Christianity (Wiley-Blackwell, 2016), 131-41


The Storm of Images, in Beth Felker Jones and Jeffrey W Barbeau, eds., The Image of God in an Image Driven Age (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2016), 242-59


Evangelicals – Pentecostals – Charismatics: New Religious Movements as Challenges for the Catholic Church, in Johannes Müller and Karl Gabriel, eds., Evangelicals, Pentecostal Churches, Charismatics (Quezon City, Philippines: Claretian, 2015), 285-314


The Present and Future of World Christianity, Norsk Tidsskrift for Misjonsvitenskap 2(2015), 67-83.


Letting Go: Understanding Mormon Growth in Africa, in Matthew J. Grow and Reid L. Neilson, eds., From the Outside Looking In: Essays on Mormon History, Theology, and Culture (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015), 330-52.


Angels and Horsemen: The Great War as an Apocalyptic Struggle, in Philip Jenkins ed., Remembering Armageddon (Waco TX: ISR Books, 2015), 71-92.


 The World’s Fastest Growing Religion: Comparing Christian and Muslim Expansion in the Modern Era, in Stanley D. Brunn, ed., The Changing World Religion Map: Sacred Places, Identities, Practices and Politics (Dordrecht: Springer, 2015), 1767-79.


Out of the Past: Assessing Historical Reports of Sexual Abuse, in Dwight P. Baker and Robert J. Priest, The Missionary Family (Pasadena, CA: William Carey Library, 2014), 143-62.

Changes and Trends in Global Christianity, in Gordon L. Heath and Steven M. Studebaker, eds., The Globalization of Christianity: Implications for Christian Ministry and Theology (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2014), 29-44.

Maurice, Son of Theodoric: Welsh Kings and the Mediterranean World, 550-650AD, in North American Journal of Welsh Studies, 8(2013).


A Critic in the Desert: Robert Browning and the Limits of Plain Historic Fact, Fides et Historia 45(1)(2013), 14-29


Religious Authority and the Challenges of Modernity, in David Marshall, ed., Tradition and Modernity: Christian and Muslim Perspectives (Georgetown University press, 2013), 31-44.


Foreword, to Conrad L. Kanagy et al, Winds of the Spirit (Harrisonburg, VA: Herald, 2012), 9-11.


Regions Luther Never Knew, in David Lyle Jeffrey, ed., The King James Bible and the World it Made (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2011), 119-34


The Globalization of Christianity, in Wilhelm Krull, ed., Research and Responsibility: Reflections on Our Common Future (Leipzig: CEP Europäische Verlagsanstalt, 2011), 287-304


Foreword to Peter Wehner and Arthur C. Brooks, Wealth and Justice: The Morality of Democratic Capitalism (Washington DC: AEI Press, 2011), ix-xxi.


Dialogue with Richard E. Rubenstein about my book Jesus Wars, in Conversations in Religion and Theology 8(2) (2010): 150-159.


Foreword to Harry Sylvester, Dayspring, reprinted edition (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2009).


Letting Go: Understanding Mormon Growth in Africa, in Journal of Mormon History, 35(2)(2009): 1-25.


A World That Hates Gays, in Russ Kick, ed., You Are Still Being Lied To, second edition (New York; Disinformation Books, 2009): 227-239.


Failure To Launch: Why Do Some Social Issues Fail to Detonate Moral Panics? British Journal of Criminology 49(2009): 35-47.



Journalism in Magazines and Newspapers


I have published extensively in magazines and newspapers, including both major articles as well as shorter opinion and op-ed pieces. Among many other publications, my work has appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, Wall Street Journal, New Republic, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, Christian Century, USA Today, First Things, American Conservative, and Books and Culture. I have also written for many European publications. Some examples of this writing from the past few years include:



Euro Skepticism: Why Benedict XVI Tried, And Failed, To Evangelize Europe, New Republic, February 13, 2013.


Waco's Assault on Religious Toleration, Wall Street Journal, February 22, 2013.


Waco in Red and Blue, Christian Century, May 15, 2013: 28-31


The Pope From Beyond the Seas, Chronicle of Higher Education, March 2013.


Nord Africa e Mezzaluna: Demografia in Crisi, Vita e Pensiero (Milan), May-June 2013: 45-48


A Front Row Seat to African Faith, Christianity Today, September 2013: 80-81


Trying to Teach Globally, Baptist Standard, November 11, 2013


Holy War in the Crimea, Christianity Today, March 2014

Reprinted as “Kvestie de Krim Heeft Diepe Religieuze Wortels,” in Nederlands Dagblad, March 20, 2014


Of Faith and Film, Baptist Standard March 28, 2014


Was the Great War a Holy War? On Faith, April 2014


The Fall of Mosul,, June 2014

This piece appeared in Spanish, as Lo que hay detrás de la caída de Mosul

It also appeared in Romanian as Cucerirea orașului Mosul.


ISIS Could Regret Caliphate, USA Today, July 6, 2014


Why the Caliphate Will Devour Its Children, Daily Beast, July 11, 2014


Leaving Nineveh, Christian Century August 5, 2014: 10-11


Priest Under Threat, (film review) Christian Century, September 4, 2014


On the Edge of Extinction, Christianity Today, November 2014: 36-42.

This article was reprinted in Baylor Magazine Winter 2015: 30-34.


A Long View of History and Religious Extremism, Tony Blair Faith Foundation, November 2014


Holy Terror, Christian Century, April 1 2015: 28-31


The Worst Thing to Think About Jesus, Lifezette, July 2015


Cultural Genocide, Lifezette, July 2015


The Forgotten History of Mary’s Gospels, October 2015


Dead Temples vs. Living Churches,, November 2015

This article was reprinted as Chiese d'Oriente, Crepusculo inevitabile? Vita e Pensiero, February 2016: 19-22

It was also reprinted as Chiese d'Oriente in balìa del Daesh, Avvenire, March 2016


The Secret Gospels that Have Been Hiding in Plain Sight, History News Network, November 2015


Shadow of a Saint, Christian Century, May 25, 2016: 32-34


African Faith is Going Global, Trend, Summer 2016: 26-33


Catholicism’s Incredible Growth Story, Catholic Herald, September 9, 2016


When God is Silent, Christian Century, March 1, 2017: 44-45


200 Years That Shaped Judaism, Jesus, And All That Followed, Christian Century, October 11, 2017: 36-39.


Revolutionary Biblical Discoveries and the Need for Historical Amnesia, Ancient Near East Today, October 2017


The Catholic World Is About To Be Turned Upside Down, Catholic Herald, November 3, 2017


The Next Battle Over Monuments? It Will Be Those for the Founding Fathers, HNN Network, November 2017


Why What’s Happening in the Middle East Today Seems So Familiar to This Historian, HNN Network, November 2017


What Early Christians Learned From Jews About The Afterlife, US Catholic, online, January 2018. A hard copy version of this appeared as “The Afterlife Evolution,” US Catholic June 2018: 25-27


La croce e il fiore di loto, Osservatore Romano, April 26, 2018: 5. Reprinted as The Cross and the Lotus, in L’Osservatore Romano, November 2, 2018: 6-7


The Dangerous Politics Of Guilt By Association, Spectator, October 28, 2018


Pennsylvania’s Dark History of Hate, Tablet Magazine, October 29, 2018


The Myth of the Transformative Election, Spectator, November 2018


How High Is Your Constitutional IQ? Spectator, January 2019


Fertility, Faith, and a Secular America? The Gospel Coalition, October 2019


Food, Drink And Urban Revolutions, MIHE Blog, October 2019


Witch Ways, First Things, December 2019


How the Gender Wars of the Early 1990s Shaped the World We Know, History News Network, December 2019


10 Trends of the 2010s, Christian Century, January 29, 2020: 20-23


The Future of World Christianity is African, The Gospel Coalition, August 2020



Since 2008, I have published a monthly column in the Christian Century under the general title Notes from the Global Church


I also write regular columns for a number of other outlets, including ABC Religion and Ethics, Books and Culture, Chronicles magazine, American Conservative,, and RealClearReligion.


I blog at the Anxious Bench ( and my postings are listed here. I also contributed to the Texas Faith Blog.



Book Reviews


Since 1985, I have published over a hundred book reviews.





Since 1980, I have delivered over a hundred papers to scholarly gatherings and professional associations, most regularly to groups like the American Society of Criminology, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, and the Pennsylvania Historical Association. I have also presented papers to groups as diverse as the Organization of American Historians, American Society of Eighteenth Century Studies, the Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies, G. K. Chesterton Society, Popular Culture Association, American Correctional Association, American Association of Law Librarians, and the Pennsylvania Labor History Society.


In addition, I have given invited lectures to a wide variety of groups. Over the past fifteen years, I have spoken at more than 150 universities, colleges and seminaries in North America and Europe.


Some examples of invited lectures or presentations include:


Evangelicals, Pentecostals, and Charismatics, International Conference on New Religious Movements as a Challenge for the Catholic Church, organized by the German Bishops' Conference, Rome, Italy, April 2013.


Christianity and World History, Wilberforce Weekend (Colson Center), Arlington VA, April 2013.


Out of the Past: Child Abuse in Religious Settings, STAND conference for North American Mission Leaders, Dallas TX, September 2013.


From Wittenberg to Lagos: The Sixteenth Century Reformation and Modern-Day Global Christianity, at Protestantism? Reflections in Advance of the 500th Anniversary of the Protestant Reformation, 1517-2017, Gordon College, Mass., November 2013.


Faiths at War, Custodire l’umanità: verso le periferie esistenziali, Assisi, Italy, November 2013


Reshaping Faith: How The First World War Transformed Christianity, Judaism and Islam, Frederick C. Wood Lectures, Cornell University, Ithaca NY and Cornell Club, New York City, April 2014.


Where Have All The Cultists Gone? Debate with Gordon Melton, CESNUR conference on New Religious Movements, Waco TX, June 2014


Culture and Faith, Napa Institute, Napa CA, July 2014


The Middle East, Violence and Religion, St. Vincent's College, Latrobe PA, February 2015.


The Great and Holy War, Berry College, Rome GA, February 2015.


Houston’s Nigerian Churches, (Read on my behalf), Texas State Historical Association, Corpus Christi, TX, March 2015


The Image of God in Global Faith, Wheaton Theology Conference, Wheaton IL, April 2015. This was also Wheaton College’s McManis Lecture.


Demographics and Global Faith, Christian Scholars Conference, Abilene TX, June 2015. My work was also the subject of two panels at this event.


Religion, Violence and Scripture, Chautauqua, NY, July 2015.


The Demographic Dimension of Global Christianity, Commemorative Conference on the Basel Mission 1815-2015, Basel, Switzerland, September 2015.


Godless Europe? End of Religion symposium, National Press Club, Washington DC, November 2015.


Christianity, Islam and Holy Wars, at conference on Mere Anglicanism: The Cross and the Crescent, Charleston SC, January 2016


The Last Holy War? Teach-in on the First World War, University of Oklahoma, Norman OK, March 2016


It's Bigger on the Inside: Decline, Growth and Transformation in Contemporary Religion, Society of Christian Philosophers, Pacific Division, San Diego CA, March 2016


Faculty Mentor, Sixth Enoch Graduate Seminar, Austin, TX, May 2016


Conversation on Global Trends: New Demographics and their Implications, Pew Foundation, Washington DC, July 2016


Childhood’s End, Inklings Society, Oxford England, July 2016


Fertility and Faith, Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, Waco, TX, October 2016


The Western Frontier: Euro-Islam and the Remaking of Global Faith, Missiology Lectures, Fuller Seminary, Pasadena CA, November 2016


Chair and Discussant, Panel on The Anglican Communion and the First World War, North American Conference on British Studies, Washington DC, November 2016


Secular Europe? Texas Baptists Annual Meeting, Waco TX, November 2016


Invited Participant, Foresight Conference on Global Futures, Singapore, July 2017


Pineapple and Herring: Protestant and Catholic Missionary Strategies in the Early Modern World, Conference on Celebrating 500 Years of the Reformation, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, September 2017


Reformations: Past, Present And Future, Florida International University, Miami, FL, October 2017


The Eastern Churches, Conference on Coming Home from Genocide, Anglosphere Society/Hudson Institute, New York City, December 2017


The Church in an Era of Change, Meeting for the Friendship of Peoples, held at Rimini, Italy, August 2018, 


1918 and 1968: Crisis, Catastrophe and the Remaking of Religions, King University, Bristol TN, September 2018


The Great War and the Holy War, Fahrhochschule für Interkulturelle Theologie, Hermannsburg, Germany, November 2018


The Ghosts of Churches Past, Landregan lecture, University of Dallas, Dallas, TX, February 2019


Crucible of Faith, Colorado Christian University, Denver, CO, October 2019


Keynote speaker on “Faith, Religion, and World War One,” Lilly Endowment workshop, National WWI Museum and Memorial, Kansas City, MO, January 2020


Africa and the Global Church, City to City Africa, virtual presentation, October 2020


Faith and Fertility, The Media Project, October 2020


Christianity Today: Prospects and Trends, First Presbyterian Church, Augusta, GA, February 2021


Fertility and Faith: How Demographic Change Shapes Religious Revolutions, seminar in Modern Religious History, Institute of Historical Research, University of London, February 2021


Religion after the Pandemic: Forecasting the Global Future of Faith, Program for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society (PRRUCS), University of Pennsylvania, March 2021



In addition to these lectures and seminars, I have also spoken frequently in different venues in the US and overseas, chiefly on aspects of global Christianity, and the expansion of Christianity in the global South. Since 2002, I have given about 150 such lectures.



Over the last fifteen years, I have also participated in (at least) several hundred interviews with the mass media (newspapers, radio and television), and have been frequently quoted in news reports in North America and Europe. My media appearances include newspapers and radio stations in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Australia, Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Brazil, as well as in many different regions of the United States.


I have appeared on a number of news specials and CNN documentaries covering a variety of topics, including the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church, as well as serial murder, terrorism, and aspects of violent crime.  In the past few years, most of my media appearances have concerned the topic of global Christianity. I was interviewed on Fox's The Beltway Boys, and on the 2003 documentary Battle for Souls (Discovery Times Channel). I appeared on the History Channel special, Time Machine: 70's Fever (2009).


I have often appeared on talk radio, including NPR's All Things Considered and Fresh Air, and on various BBC and RTE programs. I have been a guest on the syndicated radio programs of Diane Rehm, Michael Medved, Alan Colmes, and James Kennedy, as well as the nationally broadcast Canadian shows Tapestry, Currents, and Ideas. To give some examples, in 2010, I was interviewed on NPR’s All Things Considered on the topic of, Is the Bible More Violent Than The Quran? In 2014, Interfaith Voices interviewed me about the First World War. So did ABC RN (Australia).




I have served as an expert witness in a number of trials and legal hearings, drawing on my knowledge of, variously, sexual abuse by clergy; contemporary US religion; cults and new religions, and designer drugs.


In 2000, I testified before the Crime Subcommittee of the Judiciary Committee of the US House of Representatives, which was holding hearings into Ecstasy and Other Club Drugs. This testimony was also reprinted as Ecstasy and Synthetic Panics, in the Journal of Cognitive Liberties 1(3)(2000): 7-28.


In 2006, I testified before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations of the Energy and Commerce Committee of the US House of Representatives. The theme of the hearing was Sexual Exploitation of Children Over the Internet.





2015 - The Great and Holy War won an Award of Merit in the Christianity Today Book Award competition in the category of History/Biography.


2010 – Booklist included my Jesus Wars among the year’s top ten titles in Religion and Spirituality.


2009 – Booklist included my Lost History of Christianity among the year’s top ten religion titles.


2007 – Booklist rated my God’s Continent one of the top ten religion titles of 2007.

-The New Faces of Christianity won Christianity Today’s award for the best book in the category of Missions/Global Affairs.


2006 - The New Faces of Christianity won the Theologos award of the Association of Theological Booksellers, for the year’s Best Academic Book.

-Choice listed Decade of Nightmares as an Outstanding Title for 2006.


2003 – My book The Next Christendom won the 2003 Christianity Today Book Award for the best book in the category of Christianity and Culture

-The Next Christendom won the Gold Medallion book award of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association in the category of Christianity and Society.

-I received Penn State’s Alumni Teaching Fellow Award.


2002 - The Next Christendom won the Theologos award of the Association of Theological Booksellers, for the year’s Best Academic Book.


1998 - Travel Grant from the Harry S. Truman Library, in Independence, MO.

-Regional Fellow award from the North-Eastern division of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences


1997-My article Spy Mad: Investigating Subversion in Pennsylvania 1917-18 won the Philip Klein Prize of the Pennsylvania Historical Association for the best article published in 1995-96 in Pennsylvania History.

-Travel Grant from the Billy Graham Center, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL.

-Resident Research Fellow, Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies, Philadelphia, PA


1996 - My book Using Murder won the Outstanding Book Award of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (award presented at the ACJS national convention in Las Vegas, NV, March 1996).

-For Using Murder, I also won the Distinguished Scholar award of the Crime and Delinquency section of the Society for the Study of Social Problems (award presented in New York City, August 1996)

-I won the Class of 1933 Award for Distinguished Humanities Scholarship, Penn State University.


1995 - Scholar in Residence, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

Funding received from Institute of Arts and Humanistic Studies, Penn State University; and from Office of Research and Graduate Studies, College of Liberal Arts, Penn State University.


1994 - funding from Office of Research and Graduate Studies, College of Liberal Arts, Penn State University.


1993 - funding from Institute of Arts and Humanistic Studies, Penn State University; and Office of Research and Graduate Studies, College of Liberal Arts, Penn State University.


1988 - I participated in a USIA-funded faculty exchange between Penn State and the University of Melbourne, Australia.


1986 - My article on The Ku Klux Klan in Pennsylvania won the 1986 Solon J. Buck prize for articles on Western Pennsylvania history.


1979 – Champion of BBC television’s Mastermind quiz series.




1980-2011:       Teaching at Pennsylvania State University on a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses in the departments of History, Religious Studies, Criminal Justice, and American Studies.


My teaching evaluations.


2010-present    Teaching at Baylor University, chiefly on Global Christianity, and on US History since 1975. See also here.





Member, Editorial Board, Oxford Studies in World Christianity.


Since 2009, I have been a contributing editor for the American Conservative.


In 2017, I became a contributing editor for Christian Century.


I have reviewed manuscripts for numerous publishers and scholarly journals.








May 2021