Gary J. Tyra
Associate Professor of Biblical and Practical Theology
Areas of Specialization: Theology, Spiritual and Ministry Formation.
Education: B.A., West Coast Christian College; M.Div. and D.Min., Fuller Theological Seminary.
Dr. Tyra teaches theology courses in Vanguard’s traditional programs and in the School for Professional Studies—courses which aim to help students experience growth toward spiritual, moral, and ministry maturity. Having spent over three decades providing pastoral leadership for three congregations, he now devotes himself full time to teaching, mentoring future leaders, preaching in various churches, and writing.
Gary’s first book, Defeating Pharisaism: Recovering Jesus’ Disciple-making Method (Paternoster, 2009), deals with the problem of Pharisaism in evangelical churches, offering church leaders a strategy by which they can cultivate a disciple-making experience and environment that mitigates the presence of Pharisaism (legalism, dogmatism, separatism, judgmentalism, hypocrisy, etc.) while steering congregation members toward a more grace-oriented approach to the spiritual life. Gary and his wife Patti co-authored a second book entitled Beyond the Bliss: Discovering Your Uniqueness in Marriage (Biblica , 2010). This book endeavors to help couples cultivate transformational marriages that enable both marital partners become more whole human beings who don’t run away from life. Gary’s third book is scheduled for release in 2011 (Biblica Publishing). Entitled Christ’s Empowering Presence, it is designed to serve as a spiritual life resource to which readers can return time and again for fresh inspiration in their walk with Christ. Dr. Tyra is currently under contract with InterVarsity Press to write a fourth book which will explore the relationship between Spirit-inspired speech and action and missional effectiveness. A Missional Pneumatology is tentatively scheduled for release by IVP in late 2011 or early 2012.
As is evident from the courses he teaches and the kind of books he writes, Dr. Tyra’s abiding passion is to see is to see as many people as possible recognize the vital difference between mere “churchianity” and genuine Christianity, and to be equipped to live their lives as fully devoted followers of Christ in an increasingly post-Christian world.