Research Fellows
Direct any question regarding research, obtaining a research fellowship, or our research fellows to our chair of research
The Institute for Faithful Research
Serving God by enriching our view of Him


Charles Taliaferro
Senior Research Fellow
Director of Center for Philosophy of Religion

Taliaferro is devoted to developing Christ centered and Christian world view enriching publications.  He specializes in philosophy of religion, philosophy of mind and dualism, the metaphysics of naturalism, as well as philosophical theology.

Charles Taliaferro is the author of Consciousness and the Mind of God (Cambridge University Press), Contemporary Philosophy of Religion (Blackwell), Evidence and Faith; Philosophy and Religion Since the Seventeenth Century (Cambridge University Press), Dialogues About God (Rowman and Littlefield), Philosophy of Religion (One World, forthcoming), and The Golden Cord; A Short Book on Eternity (University of Notre Dame Press, forthcoming). He is the co-author of Naturalism (Eerdmans) and co-editor of A Companion to Philosophy of Religion Cambridge Platonist Spirituality (Paulist Press), Philosophy of Religion Reader (Blackwell), A Dictionary of Philosophy of Religion (Continuum), Imagination and God (Oxford), and the Cambridge Companion to Christian Philosophical Theology. He is currently working on co-authoring a book manuscript on redemption and co-authoring a book with Jil Evans on aesthetics, theism and naturalism, The Image In Mind (Continuum). He co-edited the second edition of the Blackwell Companion to Philosophy of Religion with Paul Draper. Taliaferro has been a Visiting Scholar at Oxford, Princeton, Columbia, and New York University and has received an NEH grant, and been a Scots Club Centenary Fellow. He has given lectures at Oxford, Cambridge, Yale, Princeton, the University of St. Andrews (Scotland), New York University, the University of Chicago, the Gregorian (Rome), Beijing University (China), and elsewhere. He is on the editorial boards of American Philosophical Quarterly, Religious Studies, Philosophy Compass, Sophia, Religious Studies Review, Ars Disputandi, Continuum Studies. He currently serves on the American Philosophical Association committee on lectures and publications and has been appointed to serve on the APA Committee on the Status and Future of the Profession and on the Advisory Committee to the Eastern Division of the APA, 2010-2013.

Eugene Merrill
Senior Research Fellow
Director of the Center for Old Testament Research


Eugene H. Merrill is Distinguished Professor of Old Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas, TX, a position he has held for 35 years. In addition, he serves as Distinguished Professor of Old Testament Interpretation at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. He is married to Dr. Janet L. Merrill and he and his wife have one daughter, Sonya L. Merrill, M .D., PhD. A native of  Maine, Dr. Merrill took degrees at Bob Jones University, Greenville, South Carolina; New York University (M.A. in Judaica); and Columbia University (Ph.D. in Middle Eastern Studies). He currently lectures in the areas of Hebrew and Semitic languages, biblical backgrounds, and Old Testament theology. He has lectured abroad on many occasions and at present is involved in an archaeological excavation at Khirbet al-Maqatir, a possible site of biblical Ai.

Among Professor Merrill’s major publications are An Historical Survey of the Old Testament  (Baker, 1966; 2nd edition, 1991.); 1 & 2 Chronicles (Zondervan, 1988); Kingdom of Priests: A History of Old Testament Israel (Baker, 1987; 2nd edition, 2008); Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi (Moody, 1994; reprint Galaxie, 2003); Deuteronomy (Broadman & Holman, 1994); (with Charles Dyer) The Old Testament Explorer (Word, 2001); and Everlasting Dominion: A Theology of the Old Testament (Broadman & Holman, 2006. He was an associate editor of the New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis (Zondervan, 1997) and is currently editing a multi-volume theological word study of the Old Testament (Chariot-Victor). He was a translator of the New King James Version and the New Living Translation; an editor of the Holman Christian Standard Bible; and a contributor to The Apologetics Study Bible and the Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible.


Dr. Merrill and his wife are members of First Baptist Church of Dallas where he serves as a deacon and an adult Sunday school teacher. He is also currently the President of the Evangelical Theological Society (2009-2010).

Video of Dr. Merrill

Robert Letham
Senior Research Fellow
Director of the Center for Systematic Theology


A Presbyterian minister, Bob has served congregations in New Jersey and Wilmington, Delaware, the latter for over 17 years. He has taught theology at London School of Theology, Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia) and Reformed Theological Seminary (Washington DC/Baltimore). Married to Joan, an American, for 35 years, he has three grown children: two daughters (both married), a son and a grandson. He is devoted to cricket (despite being consistently overlooked by the selectors), music (from Scarlatti to Shostakovich), and walking (which he began at an early age). Letham is an emanate Systematic Theologian. He works on the Trinity, Christology, and Patristic Theology.  

Representative Publications:

The Work of Christ (IVP, 1993)
The Lord's Supper (Presbyterian & Reformed, 2001)
The Holy Trinity (Presbyterian & Reformed, 2004)
Through Western Eyes: Eastern Orthodoxy, A Reformed Perspective (Mentor, 2007)
Assurance in Theological Context: Reformed Dogmatics 1523-1619 (Rutherford Studies in Historical Theology, forthcoming)
The Westminster Assembly: Reading its Theology in Historical Context (Presbyterian & Reformed / Craig Center for the Study of the Westminster Standards, 2009)
Union with Christ (Presbyterian & Reformed, forthcoming)
The Person of Christin The Bible Speaks Today Themes Series(IVP, forthcoming)
Many chapters and articles in symposia, dictionaries, encyclopedias, and journals.

Robin Collins
Senior Research Fellow
Director of the Center for Philosophy of Science


Collins is committed to developing a robust view of God and His creation some areas he specializes in Topics in Science and Religion, Design Arguments for Theism from Physics and Cosmology, Neuroscience and the Mind/Body Problem Religion and Science (Particularly Physics), Scientific Realism/Antirealism Debate, Topics in Philosophy of Religion, Philosophical Theology, and Comparative/Non-Western Philosophy and Metaphysics, Scientific Naturalism.

Representative Publications:

 “The Teleological Argument.” In The Rationality of Theism, ed. Paul Copan and Paul Moser, Routledge, March, 2003. “Evolution and Original Sin.” In Perspectives on an Evolving Creation, ed. Keith Miller, Eerdman’s Publishing Company, September 2003. “Theism or Pantheism? A Critical Review Essay of John Leslie’s Infinite Minds: a Philosophical Cosmology.” In Philosophia Christi, March, 2004. “Design and the Designer: New Concepts, New Challenges.” Invited paper in honor of Sir John Templeton’s 90th Birthday. In The Spiritual Information Project: 100 Perspectives, Charles L. Harper, Jr., ed., Templeton Foundation Press, 2005. “Hume, Fine-Tuning and the Who Designed God? Objection,” in James Sennett and Douglas Groothius, eds., In Defense of Natural Theology: A Post-Humean Reassessment. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, pp. 175-199, Sept. 2005.  “The Design Argument Between Science and Metaphysics.” In Analytic Philosophy without Naturalism, ed. Sergio Galvan, New York, NY: Routledge, April 2006.  “How to Rigorously Define Fine-tuning,” Part of a special issue of Philosophia Christi on the Mathematics of Fine-tuning, December 2005.  “The Challenge of the Many-Universes Hypothesis.” In Faith and Philosophy (Special Issue on God and Physical Cosmology), Fall 2006.  “Philosophy of Science and Religion.” Oxford Handbook of Science and Religion. Philip Clayton and Jeffrey Schloss, eds., Oxford University Press, 2006. 20. “The Multiverse hypothesis: A theistic perspective.” In Universe or Multiverse? ed. Bernard Carr, Cambridge University Press (2007), pp. 459-480.21.. "Modern Physics and the Energy-Conservation Objection to Mind-Body Dualism."  American Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 45, N1, January 2008, pp. 31-42. 25. “The Teleological Argument.” In The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Religion, edited by Paul Copan and Chad V. Meister, Routledge, 2007.  (This same essay is also published in the Routledge Reader in Philosophy of Religion, edited by Paul Copan and Chad Meister.) “Divine Action and Evolution,” in Oxford Handbook on Philosophical Theology, Thomas Flint and Michael Rea, eds., Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming, pp. 410-447. (10,000 word original essay that explores the purposes God might have for creating the world by means of an evolutionary process.) “The Fine-tuning Argument,” in Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology, edited by William Lane Craig and J. P. Moreland, May 2009.

PBS interview

Long article on the design of the universe

Article on Mind-Body problem


Paul Pistone
Chair of Research
Director of the Center for Philosophy of Mind

Pistone researches and publishes in the areas of cognitive science, philosophy of mind, and the do
ctrine of Man so that it is hard for thinkers and teachers in these fields to be intellectually respectable and professionally responsible while at the same time rejecting the irreducibility of the mind in research and dismissing the soul and Christianity in lecture.  He also works in various areas of philosophical theology (e.g. the doctrine of the Trinity).

Representative Publications:


Guest editor Philo “special issue on Theism and Naturalism,”  Philo. 12.2 (2010).

Cambridge Companion to Theism. Co-Editor with Douglas Geivett, Cambridge University Press (Under review by Laura Morris at Cambridge University Press).

Dualism and the Causal Interaction Problem. Co-Editor with Charles Taliaferro. (Under review Routledge Press).

“Why Postmodernism is Bad for the Environment.” Lore: Rhetoric, Writing, Culture 6.1 (2006).

“Landscapes of Theism and Naturalism: An Introduction.” Philo 12.2 (2010): 1-8.

 “Introduction” co-author (with Charles Taliaferro).  In Dualism and the Causal Interaction Problem. (Under review Routledge Press). “Introduction” co-author (Doug Geivett). In Cambridge Companion to Theism. Cambridge University Press (Under review by Laura Morris at Cambridge University Press).

“The Pairing Problem, Other Minds, and Intersubjectivity”  In Dualism and the Causal Interaction Problem. (Under review Routledge Press).

“Theistic Anthropology” In Cambridge Companion to Theism. Cambridge University Press (Under review by Laura Morris at Cambridge University Press).


Kevin Walker
Research Fellow
Director of the Center for Politics


Walker studies how the central theology is when it comes to understanding the “clash of civilizations.” Currently, Walker is examining the relationship between Islamic qualms against the West and the West’s rejection of its own theological heritage; which appears to make it quite removed from the rest of the world, even as it pursues a "global" spirit of tolerance and understanding.  He is interested in how United States foreign policy toward the Middle East might acquire a renewed sense of “theological realism,” or a willingness to take religious teaching seriously.


Representative publications:


“Theodore Roosevelt, Maker of American Politics,” on Sidney Milkis’

Theodore Roosevelt, the Progressive Party, and the 

Transformation of American Democracy (Kansas University Press,

 2009), in the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era

forthcoming in Fall, 2010.


“Democracy Disenchanted,” on Steven D. Smith’s

The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse (Harvard University

 Press, 2010), in the Review of Politics, forthcoming in Fall 2010.

On Judy A. Gaughan’s Murder Was Not a Crime: Homicide and 

Power in the Roman Republic

(University of Texas Press, 2009), in the American Journal of 

Legal Historyforthcoming in Fall, 2010.

“The Wages of Progress,” a review of Bradley C.S. Watson’s Living

Constitution, Dying Faith (ISI Books, 2009), in The City: A 

Publication of  Houston Baptist University, Spring, 2010.

“State Police Power, Old and New:

The Slaughterhouse Cases and the Meaning of Republicanism in the Gilded Age,”

an article submitted to the Journal of Supreme Court History, July, 2010. 

(Under review.)

“The Constitutional Word Incarnate: The Problem of the Fourteenth

Amendment,” an article submitted to the Journal of Constitutional 

LawMay, 2010. (Pending.)

James Foster
Research Fellow

The key issue that connects both Foster’s current research activity and plans for future research is the relationship between religious belief and morality in the context of virtue theory. In recent years much of his work has been done to explicate the traditions of Emersonian and Augustinian virtue. The question remains, however: can we diminish the distinction between religious and secular motivated virtue without undermining their respective integrity? Foster believes resources for answering this question are to be found in the thought of the 18th century Scottish philosopher Thomas Reid. At present, he is in the final stages of working on a lengthy project on Reid’s ethics. Its aim is to show that Reid’s prioritization of moral practice over moral theory is a crucial first step toward untangling persistent philosophical problems surrounding key questions about religion and ethics.

Representative publications:

Scottish Philosophy in America: Selected Writings, Editor, Library of Scottish Philosophy, Exeter, UK & Charlottesville, VA: Imprint Academic, (forthcoming 2017)

 ‘Patching Up Virtue: A Critical Review of Jennifer Herdt’s Putting on Virtue’, Journal of Religious Ethics (forthcoming 2017).

‘Continuity or Break: Danto and Gadamer on the Crisis of Anti-Aestheticism’, Journal of Aesthetic Education, Vol. 45.2, 2011.

 ‘Sphere Sovereignty:  A Reluctant Friend of Civil Unions’, Kuyper Review, Vol. 1,  2010.

 ‘Reid’s Reply to Hume on Double-Vision’, The Journal of Scottish Philosophy, Vol. 6.2.

Review of Sabine Roeser’s (ed.) Reid on EthicsJournal of Scottish Philosophy, 10.1, (forthcoming 2017).

Review of J Caleb Clanton’s Religion and Democratic CitizenshipSoundings, Vol. XCL.1-2

Alvin Plantinga's advice to Christian Philosophers is an excellent example of a description of the type of work this institute stands for. If you are interested in reading this essay, you will find it here