Mike earned his PhD in Hebrew Bible and Semitic Languages at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Before going to the UW-Madison, Mike earned an M.A. in Ancient History from the University of Pennsylvania (major fields were Ancient Israel and Egyptology), and another M.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (Hebrew Studies). He also attended Dallas Theological Seminary. Mike’s undergraduate degree is from Bob Jones University, but he also attended Bible college for three years.
Mike’s dissertation was entitled, "The Divine Council in Late Canonical and Non-Canonical Second Temple Jewish Literature.” The dissertation sought to discern the ancient Canaanite and Israelite roots of Jewish binitarian monotheism and the early Church’s high Christology. Because of his course work, Mike can do translation work in roughly a dozen ancient languages, among them Biblical Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, Egyptian hieroglyphs, and Ugaritic cuneiform. He has also studied Akkadian and Sumerian independently.
Mike’s main research interests are Israelite religion (especially Israel's divine council), contextualizing biblical theology with Israelite and ancient Near Eastern religion, Jewish binitarianism, biblical languages, ancient Semitic languages, textual criticism, comparative philology, and Second Temple period Jewish literature.
As a Scholar-in-Residence for Faithlife, Mike is responsible for targeting and evaluating potential data projects for scholarly products, overseeing existing academic projects, and the creation of written content. Mike’s varied academic background enables him to operate in the realm of critical scholarship and the wider Christian community. His experience in teaching on the undergraduate level and writing for the layperson contributes directly to the company’s goal of adapting scholarly tools for non-specialists.
Before coming to Logos, Mike taught on the undergraduate level for twelve years, six of which were in Christian colleges. He currently teaches for Liberty University's distance education program. He has taught over twenty different courses covering both testaments, systematic theology, ethics, and biblical languages. He also taught world civilization for five years through Marian College in Fond du Lac, WI, and public speaking at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Mike has an active ministry to people whose worldview is molded by occult, paranormal, and esoteric beliefs. He observed that many who have adopted “alternative” worldviews were formerly traditional theists and Christians who left the faith when their questions on difficult passages and topics went unanswered, or when spiritual leaders failed to address experiences they had had. Mike seeks to fill these gaps as a Christian scholar and has become well known in these circles through writing, speaking, and numerous radio appearances.
Lastly, Mike is originally from Lebanon, PA. He and his wife Drenna married in 1987. They have four children.