Jordan Prize Winner
February 25, 2022

The Theopolis Institute is pleased to announce that Dr. Trevor Laurence is the winner of the 2021 James B. Jordan Prize for outstanding work in biblical theology.

Dr. Laurence receives this award for his 2020 Exeter dissertation, “Cursing With God: The Imprecatory Psalms and the Ethics of Christian Prayer.”

Laurence is Executive Director of the Cateclesia Institute in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. As the first-ever winner of the Jordan Prize, Laurence has received a $1000 check. “Cursing With God” will be published by Baylor University Press.

The Jordan Prize review committee – Peter Leithart, Jeff Meyers, Alastair Roberts, and Derek Brown – found Laurence’s dissertation to be an original and compelling work, a thorough, well-structured, and readable inquiry into a question of both exegetical and practical relevance.

Alastair Roberts commented, “Throughout, Laurence displays confidence in Scripture’s ability to provide insight to the attentive explorer and to serve the church’s life, rewarding his readers with satisfying answers to incisive questions.”

“Cursing With God” is exemplary in combining deep biblical analysis with pastoral interest, a combination that is key to Theopolitan biblical theology and a hallmark of the work of James B. Jordan.

“Pastors who teach through the Psalms, sing them with the congregation every week, and encourage parishioners to use them as model prayers will find the dissertation extremely helpful,” said Jeff Meyers.

The committee also applauded the ambition of Laurence’s dissertation. “Too often dissertations are plagued by risk-averse claims that offer the academy or the church little to consider,” observed committee member Derek Brown.

Laurence’s work presents a bold claim about the place of imprecatory psalms in the Christian life, and in so doing challenges both the role of this liturgical tradition within the church and the nature of dissertations in the academy, Brown added. 

The Theopolis Institute is currently receiving nominations for the 2022 Jordan Prize. See here for details.

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