Abe’s Bio

Kuwait, India, USA

I am ethnically Indian (from the country Columbus missed, way east of the GMT), but I was born in Kuwait where my father was working. Lived there for about a decade and then we moved to India when he retired. Another decade or so later, I landed on the shores of the US as an international student and have remained here ever since.

Immunology, Pediatrics, Dermatology

My initial training was in medicine and that trail took me to Houston for a PhD in immunology and an internship in pediatrics, transplanted me to Boston for my residency in dermatology, and drew me back to Texas—I finally came to my senses!—to satisfy my morbid fascination with the care and cure of diseases of the skin, hair, and nails in private practice, in Dallas, as a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Medicine, Pastoring, Theology

My brother led me to Christ when I was a teenager back in India, but for many years after that I didn’t really grow much as a believer. While at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, I started listening to Christian radio. The messages I heard and the local broadcasters I met sparked my interest in the scriptures, and my faith started to grow. To dig into the Word, I began attending the erstwhile Houston Bible Institute (now College of Biblical Studies), where most of the profs were Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) graduates. Boy, they were good!

There in Houston, I was “serendipitously” involved in a church plant even before I had any formal pastoral training. I preached frequently, and thoroughly loved every moment. It was thrilling to see God working in the lives of his people, and humbling to be used by God for his purpose. The communication of God’s truth, I realized, was something I wanted to pursue for the rest of my life. Those halcyon days settled my lifelong ministry goals to explore preaching (furthering the field), to explain preaching (training the teachers), and exemplifying preaching (strengthening the saints). Finally, at the end of the winding journey that medicine took me, I ended up at DTS for my master’s degree (ThM) in the Pastoral Leadership Track. I began teaching preaching classes as an adjunct professor in Pastoral Ministries during my final semester as a student and continued teaching there after graduation.

Researching, Teaching, Preaching

Interactions with sharp students and astute colleagues stoked the fires for more education in homiletics, so one fine day I sold house, stored car, abandoned practice, and set off for bonnie Scotland, to work on another PhD, this time researching the hermeneutics of preaching at the University of Aberdeen. I returned to Dallas Seminary in 2007 where I’ve been since, teaching preaching and spiritual life courses. “Pulpiteering” at every opportunity, I have served as interim preacher in a variety of churches, and, for a few weeks every year, I fill in for the pastor at my home church, as well as speak at Bible conferences all over. “Have pulpit? Will preach!”

Cricket, Celibacy, Christ

And when I’m not exploring, explaining, and exemplifying preaching, I’m listening to Bach (anything and everything by this unparalleled genius), following the (mis)fortunes of the Indian cricket team and its shining star Sachin Tendulkar, and, from time to time, putting my motorcycle license to good use. And I love bowties (yes, gentlemen always tie their own ties!). And old dermatology and preaching textbooks. And Harry Potter. And a capella music, especially as performed by Chanticleer or the Hilliard Ensemble. And 1960s jazz and most things by Keith Jarrett.

Somewhere along this journey I also came to the realization that celibacy was God’s gift to me. I call it “ecclesiological singleness”—single by choice, for life, unto Christ, in community. That is an integral part of who I am, and it has significantly shaped my life and solidified my faith. And so I’m also keenly interested in the theology of Christ-centered singleness, a sole passion for the Lord who gave his life a ransom for me.

“Young lions may suffer lack and feel hunger.
But they who seek the LORD shall not be in want of any good thing.”
—Psalm 34:10

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