John Ankerberg graduated from the University of Illinois, in 1972 with a B.A. He then went on to obtain a Master of Arts in Church History and The History of Christian Thought and a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, in 1973, graduating with high honors. Then, in 1991, Ankerberg received a Doctor of Ministry degree from Luther Rice Seminary. He is married to Darlene and has one daughter, Michelle.
He is an ordained Baptist minister and former pastor, but his ministry took on a more widespread approach through the use of media outlets like television and radio. As a member of the Board of Directors of the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB), Ankerberg was instrumental in developing the EFICOM (The Ethics and Financial Integrity Commission) of NRB. The main purpose of this was to create a set of principles to help ensure the integrity and fiscal soundness of broadcast ministries. He is also a member of the Board of Reference of The Christian Film and Television Commission and was selected to be one of ten TV ministers to testify before the Congressional Sub-Committee regarding financial accountability.
John Ankerberg is the producer and host of the nationally televised program, The John Ankerberg Show. On his show, Ankerberg presents contemporary issues and offers Biblical answers. Originally, this program aired every Sunday night on the Christian Broadcasting Network. When CBN suddenly decided they needed more revenue by offering more commercial time, they canceled a number of Christian programs, including the John Ankerberg Show. This action drastically reduced Ankerberg’s audience, but it also greatly reduced CBN’s support. Now, however, this thirty minute program can be seen in all 50 states via independent stations: the INSP Network, the DAYSTAR Network, the SKY ANGEL Satellite, numerous cable outlets, as well as on the internet. John Ankerberg was awarded “The Television Program Producer of the Year Award,– in 1992, by the National Religious Broadcasters. This award honors the most deserving religious TV program producer in the country. He was also honored with the “Genesis Award,” in 1984, by the Southeastern Chapter of the National Religious Broadcasters “for excellence in concept and production of a Christian TV program and ministry in its beginning years.”
He is the President and founder of The Ankerberg Theological Research Institute, formerly The Harbor Lighthouse, which can be found at www.johnankerberg.org. This website is a ministry tool containing over 1500 apologetic articles in defense of Biblical positions on currents issues such as the occult, false religions, sin, eternal security, the role of angels, prophecy and the end times. The John Ankerberg Show can also be viewed from this website.
In 1999, in effort to preserve the foundations and precepts upon which Christianity must stand, Dr. Ankerberg served on the drafting committee to create and endorse a statement designed to promote evangelical unity. This document was titled, “The Gospel of Jesus Christ: An Evangelical Celebration”, which affirmed a common commitment to the central message of the Christian faith.
125 Christian leaders joined together to form this statement over a period of about a year. Among them are Don Argue, Bill Bright, Roberta Hestenes, Oswald Hoffman, Bill Hybels, Walter Kaiser, Kenneth Kantzer, D. James Kennedy, Woodrow Kroll, Max Lucado, John MacArthur, Beth Moore, Richard Mouw, Luis Palau, Earl Palmer, Pat Robertson, Adrian Rogers, John Stott, Joseph Stowell, Joni Eareckson Tada, Thomas Trask, John Walvoord, Bruce Wilkinson, and Ravi Zacharias.
“The Christian church is always in danger of diluting its message,” stated John Ankerberg. “This is especially true today amidst rampant secularism and non-Christian spirituality.” One of the central purposes of this statement was to identify clearly not only what the Bible does say, but, also, what it does not say. Dr. Ankerberg has authored and co-authored around 60 books with much of his emphasis being on combating the myth of evolution; revealing the truth about false religions; and uncovering the occult, the New Age and Freemasonry. He speaks directly to end-times related issues in his books The Coming Darkness (Harvest House, 1993) and One World: Bible Prophecy and the New World Order (Moody Press, 1991). In these books, he focuses on the emerging New World Order and the events that lead up to that emergence; New Age philosophies and practices; and what Christians should expect in the future.
One World: Bible Prophecy and the New World Order (Chicago: Moody Press, 1991) is a work that Dr. Ankerberg authored along with Dr. Weldon and Dave Hunt. This book discusses the “Power Vacuum in the Middle East, Russia’s role in the Future, The European Common Market, The Emerging Role of the U.N. in World Politics, and The U.S. in a Possible World Coalition.”
It is quite apparent that Dr. Ankerberg’s interests and expertise run far and wide. Though diverse, he has maintained a standard of excellence by providing sound Biblical support for his claims. Ankerberg holds a firm stance on several issues with which many other Bible scholars have found reason to disagree. This is not a divisive problem, however. These questions will only be answered with complete confidence when we all stand before the Lord and ask our questions once and for all.
A quote from his book, Protestants & Catholics, Do They Now Agree, sums up Dr. John Ankerberg’s belief about salvation’s permanence, When a man places his faith in Christ, at that moment, God, the righteous Judge, passes judgment on his sin problem. That is, He justifies him. God’s justification takes place at the point of time at which a man believes. It is a once-for-all divine act, God’s final judgment, brought into the present.
Once passed, God’s justifying sentence about the sinner is irrevocable. To say God justifies is to say God has issued a verdict of acquittal concerning the sinner. It is a legal pronouncement that forever excludes the sinner from receiving any punishment for the sins he has committed during his life (page 25).
Many, many people agree with that position; many do not. The important thing is that every person set out to discover, with an open mind and a prayerful heart, what the Lord has said in His Word.