john_cookProfessor of Old Testament


  • Ancient Hebrew language and linguistics
  • Northwest Semitic languages
  • Biblical wisdom literature
  • Biblical poetry and Psalms


  • B.A., Moody Bible Institute, 1990
  • M.A., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, 1992
  • Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2002

Dr. John A. Cook came to Asbury in 2007 from Eisenbrauns, an academic publisher specializing in the ancient Near East and biblical studies, where he served as acquisitions editor. Over the past two decades Dr. Cook has taught Bible and biblical languages at the undergraduate and graduate level at a variety of institutions including Asian Theological Seminary in the Philippines, where he was a full-time faculty member from 1993 to 1996, the University of Wisconsin (Madison and Milwaukee campuses), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Wheaton College, and Grace College, Moscow Evangelical Seminary, and Asia Graduate school of Theology. He has also served as external reader/examiner for dissertations related to Ancient Hebrew language and linguistics for Dallas Theological Seminary, Uppsala University (Sweden), and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Dr. Cook’s research goal is to bring insights from the field of linguistics to the disciplines of Biblical Hebrew philology and exegesis. His publications includeTime and the Hebrew Verb: the Expression of Tense, Aspect, and Modality in Biblical Hebrew (Eisenbrauns, 2012), Beginning Biblical Hebrew: A Grammar and Illustrated Reader (co-authored with Robert D. Holmstedt; Baker 2013), more than a dozen peer-reviewed articles in Zeitschrift für Althebraistik, Journal of Semitic Studies, Journal of Hebrew Scriptures, Journal of the Near Eastern Society, Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages, The Dictionary of Old Testament (IVP), The Encyclopedia of Hebrew Language and Lingusitics (Brill), and volumes of collected essays (offprints of some available at He regularly delivers papers at the annual meetings of the Society of Biblical Literature and the National Association of Professors of Hebrew, serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Biblical Literature, and periodically writes reviews for Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Journal of Hebrew Scriptures, Bulletin for Biblical Research, and Hebrew Studies. His current research projects include Intermediate Biblical Hebrew: A Grammar and Illustrated Reader (co-authored with Robert D. Holmstedt; Baker), a volume on Ecclesiastes/Qohelet (co-authored with Robert Holmstedt) and one on Biblical Aramaic for the Baylor Handbook on the Hebrew Bible series, development of a verbal valency lexicon of Biblical Hebrew, and contributions to a syntactic database project (Accordance Bible Software).

Dr. Cook is passionate about teaching students how to read God’s Word—to strive after wisdom and holiness by seeing how the world of the text to interprets the world outside the text and then by living out that interpretation. Dr. Cook regularly teaches Advanced Hebrew grammar, Biblical Aramaic, Introduction to Old Testament, exegesis courses on the book of Psalms, on wisdom literature (Proverbs, Job, and Ecclesiastes), and occasionally exegesis of Ezekiel and of the minor prophets. He also speaks in churches on the Old Testament and the book of Psalms and periodically serves as pulpit supply.

He and his wife, Kathy, live in Wilmore and have four sons.


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