The Biblical Research Institute was established by action of the General Conference Committee in 1975. The historical roots of the institute go back to the Defense Literature Committee (established 1943) and the Committee on the Biblical Study and Research (established 1952). It consists of several Adventist theologians and staff working at the world headquarters of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
The Biblical Research Institute exists to
- Advance the study and practice of Adventist theology and lifestyle as understood by the world church and explore further biblical truth;
- Provide theological expertise and resources for the administration and departments of the General Conference and the world church;
- Identify areas of doctrinal and theological concern and encourage commitment to the truths of Scripture;
- Encourage and facilitate dialogue within the Seventh-day Adventist theological community to foster doctrinal and theological unity in the world church.
The BRI will be a leader in the exploration of biblical truth and the creation of cutting-edge biblical and theological resources to enhance the world church’s understanding and expression of its message, mission, and unity in a globally sensitive and relevant way.
Elias Brasil de Souza, Ph.D.
Doctrine of the Sanctuary
Frank M. Hasel, Ph.D.
Daniel K. Bediako, Ph.D.
Old Testament Exegesis
Biblical Hebrew Text-linguistics
Clinton Wahlen, Ph.D.
New Testament, Biblical Theology, and Hermeneutics
Ellen G. White Writings
Alberto R. Timm, Ph.D.
Ellen G. White
Senior Editorial Assistant
Function and Responsibilities
The different functions of the Biblical Research Institute can be grouped under three main headings: theological research, apologetics, and service to the church. Specific functions include:
- Identifying areas in which biblical research is needed in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
- Organizing and conducting research using institute personnel and theologians from the world field as needed.
- Enhancing the understanding and expression of biblical truth.
- Studying issues of biblical interpretation.
- Exploring new areas of truth.
- Responding to challenges to biblical doctrines as held and understood by the church.
- Engaging in dialogue with other religious communities in order to reduce tensions, misunderstandings, and prejudice against the church.
- Responding to enquiries about specific theological and doctrinal issues in the world field.
- Reviewing manuscripts for denominational publication to offer suggestions for improvement.
- Preparing materials as needed by the church in defense of truth.
- Assisting the General Conference administration on matters of biblical interpretation, doctrine, and church trends.
- Serving the world field as a resource in the areas of biblical interpretation and doctrine.
- Providing seminars in biblical studies and theology for pastors, Bible teachers, administrators, and other interested workers, and teaching intensive courses in theological seminaries around the world.
- Organizing and conducting Bible Conferences.
- Facilitating publication of substantial theological books and articles.
- Producing theological resources and making them available to administrators, pastors, and lay people in oral, written, and electronic form.
- Fostering and maintaining contact with the community of Seventh-day Adventist scholars in biblical studies, theology, and related areas.
- Providing a forum for the presentation and discussion of papers on biblical and theological topics.
- Serving as an agency for the evaluation of theological interpretations, ideas, and theories.
- Coordinating and providing assistance to the world of Biblical Research Committees in the various divisions of the world church.
Seminars, Conventions, Teaching Assignments
The Biblical Research Institute provides seminars in biblical studies and theology for pastors, Bible teachers, church administrators, and other interested workers. Upon request the institute staff presents lectures at meetings for pastors and conventions of scholars and theologians and teaches intensive courses at the college and university level around the world.
The Biblical Research Institute is responsible for organizing Bible Conferences for pastors as well as Bible Conferences for scholars and theologians in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The next major event is the Third International Bible Conference for Bible Teachers and Theologians in Israel.
Bible Lands Seminars
Upon request, the Biblical Research Institute conducts Bible Lands Seminars. These seminars offer in-depth exploration of Jerusalem and the lands of the Bible, past and present, at a level not usually available to tourists. These Seminars are especially attractive to pastors and other persons interested in serious exploration of the Bible and in their historical and geographical contexts.