From Dr. Mark Dalbey:
The recently completed Hope for the Future capital campaign provides key resources that strengthen the foundation of Covenant Seminary. As we remain committed to the infallibility and inerrancy of the Scriptures and to historic Reformed confessions, we continue to uphold our historic practices of placing systematic theology firmly on the foundation of solid exegesis and within the unfolding narrative of biblical theology. This cornerstone of our training for the next generation of pastors, counselors, and ministry leaders is a result of the leadership, teachings, and wisdom of Dr. David C. Jones. Therefore, it is my privileged to announce our newly established faculty chair, The Dr. David C. Jones Chair of Systematic Theology.
For over forty years, students were trained and equipped by Dr. Jones at Covenant Seminary. His work continues to shape the way students think about the ethical challenges before us today and how systematic theology informs Christian living. It is for these reasons I can think of no better way to honor and continue the legacy and teachings of Dr. David Jones at Covenant Seminary. See below for more information.
We are grateful for the incredible generosity of our donors who have made blessings like this newly established faculty chair possible. Endowed faculty chairs, student scholarships, and technology improvements to our campus are prime examples of the “first fruits” produced from our generous donors and the Hope for the Future capital campaign. More information about these blessings can be found in our recently released Annual Report. These gifts will have a lasting impact and influence on our mission and ministry for generations to come. Join me in celebrating and giving thanks to God for his wonderful provision!
Celebrating in Christ’s name,
Few scholars have had as lasting an impact as Dr. David C. Jones. For forty years, Dr. Jones taught systematic theology and ethics at Covenant Seminary. He was a wonderful example to generations of students of a grace-filled pastor-scholar whose love for the Lord and principled approach to life and faith showed through in all that he did. As a result, his work continues to impact how our students are trained and equipped for fruitful ministry. Dr. Jones has left an indelible mark on the fabric of Covenant Seminary that will be forever felt and now remembered though this newly established faculty chair.
“We have to learn to view our practices in light of God’s overall purpose, to see the purposeful fulfillment of His calling in our lives.”Dr. David Jones
Dr. David Clyde Jones was born in 1937 in Greenville, South Carolina, to a Christian family of the Independent Baptist variety. Jones later attended Bryan College in Tennessee, where he came to know and love the Reformed faith. While there he met Dr. Robert Rayburn, then-president of the newly founded Covenant College and Seminary, who visited Bryan College. Jones was impressed by the man and by the world-and-life-view approach taken by Covenant and attended Covenant Seminary briefly in 1959– 60 (overlapping there with his future colleague Dr. David Calhoun), before moving on to Westminster Seminary. After earning his Bachelor of Divinity from Westminster in 1962, Jones stayed on there for two more years to earn a Master of Theology under John Murray, whose classic Principles of Conduct and other works left an indelible mark on Jones as they have on many others. Upon graduation, Jones served with World Presbyterian Missions, pastoring a mission church in the West Indies for two years (the same church pastored by Dr. David Calhoun).
When plans to teach at a seminary in Japan fell through, he came to St. Louis in 1966 to pursue his doctorate at Concordia Theological Seminary, completing it in 1970. In 1967, Jones was asked to fill in as a part-time instructor and assistant librarian at Covenant after Dr. J. Oliver Buswell Jr., one of the Seminary’s founding professors, suffered a stroke. This led to Jones becoming a full-time assistant professor in 1968 and eventually a full professor, teaching at the Seminary until his retirement in 2007, when he was granted the title Professor Emeritus.
During his time at Covenant, Jones also served as academic vice president from 1977 – 1988, wrote the widely-praised textbook Biblical Christian Ethics (Baker, 1994), helped lead the Seminary into full accreditation with the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) and the Association of Theological Schools (ATS), and was instrumental in bringing Professor Jerram Barrs, a former student and good friend, to Covenant to teach (and later establish the Francis A. Schaeffer Institute) in 1989.
“His [Jones’] humility, modesty, and meekness, his graciousness and kindness drew me to him immediately. I still remember everything he taught, even his exam questions. He was a wonderful teacher and a great friend. For years, I’ve told people that David Jones is my hero and that I want to be like him when I grow up. He is the reason I came to teach at Covenant.”Prof. Jerram Barrs
In addition to his work at Covenant, Dr. Jones also served as moderator of the General Synod for the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod (RPCES) in 1978, before that denomination’s joining and receiving with the PCA, and was a further blessing to the church at large through his wide-ranging preaching ministry and presbytery involvement. Even in retirement, he continued to write, teach, and preach. His many research interests included the history of the French Huguenots and an investigation into the influence of spirituals on early gospel and jazz music.
Dr. Jones was widely recognized among the PCA as an expert in ethical matters. He served on or chaired several denominational committees that prepared official position papers on such thorny topics as divorce and remarriage, abortion, women in the church, end-of-life issues, and nuclear weapons, and constantly received phone calls asking for his advice on various ethical dilemmas. Jones once stated that, “From time to time I tell my students that what keeps me going in ethics is the opportunity to quiet frightened consciences by providing a more adequate biblical perspective on various issues.”
“Dr. Jones was a wonderful example to generations of students of a grace-filled pastor-scholar whose love for the Lord and principled approach to life and faith showed through in all that he did.”Dr. Mark Dalbey
The Dr. David C. Jones Chair of Systematic Theology
The Dr. David C. Jones Chair of Systematic Theology at Covenant Seminary is a newly-established faculty chair made possible through the Seminary’s Hope for the Future capital campaign and named in memory of the late Professor Emeritus of Systematic Theology and Ethics, Dr. David C. Jones. This chair is a testimony to God’s faithfulness during this season and serves as a reminder of Covenant Seminary’s ongoing commitment to training pastors for the local church.