Dr. David Wyrtzen Receives Houghton University’s 2022 Christian Service Award

April 13, 2022

When you receive the curriculum vitae for Dr. David B. Wyrtzen, Houghton University alumnus from the Class of 1971, it isn’t his long list of impressive publications, his challenging course titles or his lifetime of service as a pastor that first catches your eye. Rather, it’s his leading statement, his “professional passion in higher education,” to which you are first drawn:

To be used by the Holy Spirit to generate Christ-likeness in the lives of students through a balanced ministry stressing both the proclamation of the Gospel and a clear powerful exposition of God’s redemptive story of grace from Genesis through Revelation.

To equip students with the tools to understand God’s redemptive Story, to challenge them to live in obedience to this Story, and then for them to teach it to others.

In many ways, these succinct statements which sum up Dr. Wyrtzen’s heart also sum up a lifetime of Christian service to church bodies, to the Church worldwide, and to the students pursuing their own callings to ministry.

Photo of David Wyrtzen

Dr. Wyrtzen graduated from Houghton University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Chemistry, and then attended Dallas Theological Seminary to complete both a master’s degree and a doctoral degree in Theology.

Dr. Wyrtzen was the founding pastor of Midlothian Bible Church in 1973, where he served for forty years before being named Pastor Emeritus in 2013.

Throughout his pastoral career, Dr. Wyrtzen also served as an active writer, conference presenter, worldwide speaker and adjunct college professor.

Dr. Wyrtzen has published eight different books, including By Design with Andy and Andrea Horner, The Practice of Wisdom with Ron Sailler, and Unexpected Grace. He is a frequent contributor to Christian magazines, including Moody Monthly, Christian Counseling Today and Christian Parenting Today. Dr. Wyrtzen has even tried his hand at content for video games, including work on the Left Behind Video Game and co-creation of Jewels of Sinai for Hotlava.com.

Dr. Wyrtzen is a much sought-after conference presenter. His conference ministry has included over a dozen different conferences, including pastors’ conferences, Word of Life Camp on Schroon Lake, The Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove, Maranatha Bible Camps, America’s Keswick, Camp of the Woods, and pastoral teaching in Atibaia, Brazil.

In addition to preaching, writing and presenting, Dr. Wyrtzen serves as President of Truth Encounter, a non-profit ministry committed to challenging individuals to consider the authentic, biblical Christ, to commit their lives to Him, and to live out this relationship in every day life. Truth Encounter, under Dr. Wyrtzen’s leadership, provides video series, Bible conference ministries, marriage and parenting seminars, and internet broadcasting.

Dr. Wyrtzen also serves as Chaplin of Premier Designs and is a member of the board of the Horner-Premier Foundation. Premier Designs has operated since 1985 as a jewelry business that allows single moms to work from home by selling jewelry through Home Shows. The Foundation provides financial support to evangelical causes, particular in inner cities and among indigenous populations overseas.

Since 1985, Dr. Wyrtzen has taught undergraduate level courses through Word of Life Bible Institute Biblical books including Genesis, Hosea, Isaiah, Ezra, Nehemiah, and 1st and 2nd Peter. His courses have been taught both here in the United States and internationally in Hungary, Portugal, Brazil, South Korea and Argentina.

Beginning in 2006, Dr. Wyrtzen also took on instruction in both masters and doctoral level courses at Dallas Theological Seminary. These upper-level courses include The Primacy of the Pastor’s Spiritual Life, Expository Preaching, Old Testament Prophesy and Preaching the Psalms. In addition to his work as a professor, Dr. Wyrtzen pursues research interest in the application of narratology, increasing the effectiveness of Biblical Introduction courses in the lives of students, and increasing multi-racial connectedness in the Church.

Dr. Wyrtzen has been a consistent supporter and engaged ambassador for Houghton University. Including our Mosaic Multicultural Center. Most recently, he served on the 50th reunion planning committee for the Class of 1971, and was an advocate for the creation of the Class of 1971 endowed Scholarship.

Certainly throughout Dr. Wyrtzen’s distinguished career in service to the Body of Christ, he has exemplified his stated passion for higher education, exemplifying and encouraging Christ-likeness, balancing the proclamation of the Gospel with clear and powerful Biblical exposition, and dedication to the equipping of students to live out their Christian walk in wisdom and obedience.

For this dedicated service to the Church, it is our privilege to award Dr. David Wyrtzen Houghton University’s 2022 Christian Service Award.