Mark Baker, Ph.D.
Share why you teach at FPU
I am grateful that I have been mentored and discipled by professors and people I have worked with in ministry, and I'm grateful that I now have the opportunity to mentor students here at the Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary.
- Contextual theology
- Christianity in Latin America
Professional and Service Experience
After graduating from Wheaton College in 1979, I taught four years at a bilingual high school in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. I also coordinated a youth ministry program there. Coming back to the states to work on my master's, I served as a campus minister with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship for three years in Syracuse, New York. Then in 1989, my wife, Lynn, and I went to Honduras as missionaries. We worked with the Honduran equivalent of InterVarsity and co-operated with various Christian community development projects. I also taught part-time at a Bible institute.
Lynn and I had been attracted to Anabaptism through reading, life experience and interaction with various Anabaptist believers, so in 1992 when we moved to Durham, North Carolina, in order for me to study theology at Duke University, we joined a Mennonite Church.
In 1996, we returned to Honduras. Among other activities I taught at the Latin American Anabaptist Seminary. For a number of years, I have been deeply involved with a church in a poor neighborhood in Tegucigalpa, walking with them as they seek to follow Jesus. I have learned a great deal in the process, and received as I gave. My first book is a product of my conversations with these people. I remain actively involved with this church and other mission activities in Honduras through annual visits.
Honors and Awards
- ATS/Lilly Research Expense Grant, Contextualizing Galatians in Peru, 2010-11
- Licensed Minister of the U. S. Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, 2000
- Foreign Language Area Studies Fellowship (Dissertation year support), Duke/UNC Program in Latin America Studies, 1994-95
- Field Research Travel Grant (for travel to Honduras), Tinker Foundation, 1994
- New College Distinguished Student Award, Outstanding Academic Achievement, 1990
- Teacher Certification, by the State of Illinois, 1979
- Student Government President, Wheaton College, 1978-79
- Anabaptist Scholars Network 2000 - present
- Association of Anabaptist Missiologists 2000 - present
- International Jacques Ellul Society 2003 – present
- Member of the Board of Directors 2006 - present
- Fraternidad Teológica Latinoamericana (Latin American Theological Fraternity) 1991 - present
- Member of the coordinating committee of the Tegucigalpa chapter 1991-92
In a recent article: Training for Mission, I described how my growth and development has come from a rich combination of experience, mentoring, reading and formal academic training. I worked at a Christian summer camp throughout high school and college, I taught high school in Honduras for four years and then worked as a campus minister with Intervarsity Christian Fellowship in Syracuse, New York.
After completing an MA in biblical studies, I returned to Honduras with my family as a missionary. Sandwiched in the middle of six years of ministry in Honduras were four years at Duke University to complete my Ph.D. in theology and ethics. The main questions and issues I worked on at Duke came not so much from books in the library, but from the streets of Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Similarly, my writing has been motivated and shaped by life experiences, which convinced me that theology—how we think about God—really matters. I make my writings more accessible through this website with the prayer that things I have written will help others to experience in a more profound way God’s love and to more fully experience and share the shalom God desires for us.
My wife, Lynn, and I have two daughters, Julia and Christie.
Publications and Presentations
- “Reflections on Jacques Ellul on the Centenary of his Birth: Ellul Challenges and Illuminates,” The Ellul Forum 50 (Fall 2012) 3.
- “Going to Jail,” Christian Leader 73 (Dec. 2010/Jan. 2011) 4.
- “More Jesus: Declaring the Significance of the Cross,” Christian Leader 72 (April/May 2009) 6.
- “Bounded or Centered?: The Book of Galatians,” In Touch (Fall/Winter 2009) 6-7.
- “A Honduran Mayor’s Experience of Ellul’s Political Illusion,” The Ellul Forum (40, Fall 2007) 15-17.
- Guest Editor: The Ellul Forum 46 (Fall 2010), theme: “Technique, Ellul and the Food Industry.”
- “Two Foundational Stories of the Cross: How They Affect Evangelism,” Mission Focus Annual Review 15 (2007) 26-38.
- “How the Cross Saves,” Direction: A Mennonite Brethren Forum 36 (1, 2007) 43-57.
- “Saving Significance of the Cross in a Honduran Barrio,” Mission Focus Annual Review 14 (2006) 59-81.
- “Reading Romans in Hurricane-Ravaged Honduras: A Model of Intercultural and Interdisciplinary Conversation,” co-author, J. Ross Wagner, Missiology 32 (July 2004) 367-383.
I have written a number of articles in both popular and scholarly journals. Most of these articles are listed and available on my articles page.
All Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary faculty members are available for preaching and are prepared to lead a seminar on calling out leaders for training and ministry. Mark will consider teaching classes or seminars on topics in addition to those listed here, please contact him for more information. He specializes in the following topics:
- The Cross: Images of Salvation for Today
- Escaping Consumerism