John specialises in the big ideas that have shaped our world and inspired men and women to live beyond themselves. His journey has been an eclectic one: from fulltime musician to professional speaker, author, biblical historian, TV presenter and director of a multi-media think tank.
He began his career as singer/songwriter for Aussie rock band In The Silence, touring and recording for seven years before temporarily giving music away to focus on academic studies and a wide-ranging career as a speaker and author.
With an honours degree in theology and a PhD in ancient history John is also a Senior Research Fellow of the Department of Ancient History, Macquarie University. He is committed to delivering creative, engaging content grounded in careful thought.
John’s first book appeared in 1993 and he has since produced a dozen titles, including the award-winning A Spectator’s Guide to World Religions, the recent Investigating Jesus and a number more academic works.
His book The Christ Files: How Historians Know what they Know about Jesus was made into a major television documentary which aired nationally on Channel 7 in March 2008. Now a best-selling DVD, it won the 2008 Pilgrim Media award (see www.thechristfiles.com.au). His more recent Life of Jesus also aired on Channel 7 in April 2009 (see www.lifeofjesus.tv).
John is also Co-Director (with Simon Smart) of the Centre for Public Christianity (CPX), an independent research and media company promoting informed discussion about social, ethical and religious issues in modern life. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd praised CPX as “a welcome development in the spiritual and intellectual life of Australia.”
A busy public speaker John delivers over 100 talks a year in a range of contexts, including corporations, conferences, churches, pubs and universities. In addition to his passion for promoting the public understanding of the Christian faith, John is also fascinated by the paradoxical connection between high-level achievement and the historical virtues of compassion and humility, themes explored in his professional keynote address and seminar Humilitas: a Lost Key to Life, Love and Leadership and in his latest book by the same name.
John lost his father in a plane crash when he was 9, an event which he freely admits has shaped his passion for life’s big questions and still motivates him to be the best father, husband and man he can be. He values his family role above all others and lives in Sydney, Australia, with his wife and three children.