Honorary Doctorate, Alumnus Alistair Begg

June 07, 2009
The Rev. Alistair Begg
Doctor of Divinity

conferred May 28, 2009
by Westminster Theological Seminary


"You were born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1952.  You enjoyed the privileges of growing up in a Christian home and of a godly heritage rooted in the practical godliness of the Scottish Highlands.  The birthplace of the late Professor John Murray was familiar territory to you, along with the theological influences of the psalm-singing congregations in that area.

"Your pursuit of a career in law was redirected when you sensed a call to pastoral ministry. Following graduation from the London School of Theology, you served for two years as assistant to the Reverend Derek J. Prime in Edinburgh, and then for six years in Hamilton Baptist Church in the west of Scotland.  It was while there that you were invited to become the minister of Parkside Church in suburban Cleveland, Ohio.  You have been the senior minister their since August 1983.  It was in that year you left your native Scotland; where in 1976 you had been ordained to the Gospel ministry at the historic Charlotte Chapel in Edinburgh.  In the mid-eighties you became an external student at Westminster Seminary studying for a Doctor of Ministry.  However, the increasing demands of the pastorate and ever widening opportunities for ministry took precedence over the completion of that degree. Most importantly, you have been married to Susan for 34 years and you are the parents of three adult children.

"For the past 26 years you have enjoyed the privilege of leading the Parkside pastoral team and seeing a succession of young men settled in pulpits throughout the country.  Your teaching is heard daily across the nation on over 1000 radio stations that air the program, Truth For Life, and you are also a frequent speaker at conferences throughout the country and around the world. You have written a number of books, including The Hand of God, Pathway to Freedom, On Being a Pastor (with Derek Prime) and a revision of Spurgeon’s devotional, Morning and Evening.  Among the many influences upon your life you note Derek J. Prime, Eric J. Alexander, Richard C. Lucas, Alex Motyer, Martyn Lloyd-Jones and our own Sinclair B. Ferguson.

"We join others publicly acknowledging you today.  For your outstanding dedication to preaching, church leadership and evangelism, we are pleased to bestow upon you the Doctor of Divinity."

- Rev. Dr. Peter A. Lillback, President