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Robert D. Bergen

Robert D. Bergen, Ph.D.

Associate Dean of Academic Affairs;
Distinguished Professor of Old Testament and Hebrew

Email: bbergen@hlg.edu
Phone: 573-629-3092

Brief Bio

Now more than two decades into his career at Hannibal-LaGrange, Dr. Robert Bergen's passion for the classroom and for his subject area is contagious. "They don't pay me to teach," said Bergen. "They pay me to grade papers!" With a special interest in discourse linguistics, Bergen's favorite class to teach may well be Biblical Hebrew. "My challenge, and I do take it as a challenge, is to help my students do more than just sit in that class pretending to be interested in the subject," said Bergen. "I want to kindle a fire within their souls - to help them fall in love with the language God used to create the Bible Jesus used. It's a wonderful challenge - one that never gets old.... Hebrew is one of my favorite classes to teach."

When Bergen was finishing his PhD in 1986, he says he was "facing the very real possibility of flipping burgers at McDonalds." While he was willing to put his education and talents to work wherever God led, McDonalds proved not the place. He soon received two offers to teach Bible at two different Southern Baptist colleges. Turning down "the other" offer, he and his wife Martha (also a Christian Studies professor at HLGU), accepted jobs at Hannibal-LaGrange and have remained here since that time.

Through his years at the college Bergen has taught a smorgasbord of subjects, but he primarily teaches Old Testament and Biblical languages. The challenge of mixing timeless truths with a new group of students every semester keeps teaching fresh and alive for Bergen.

In between classroom and administrative responsibilities, Bergen has worked on two different Bible translations: the New Living Translation (Exodus), and the Holman Christian Standard Bible (Exodus, 1 Samuel). He has also written three commentaries and contributed to study Bibles, Bible handbooks, scholarly journals, and LifeWay Sunday School literature. In 2008, Bergen assumed the role of Associate Dean of Academic Affairs at HLGU, and he continues to teach in the Christian Studies Division.

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Southwestern Bapitst Theological Seminary
  • M.Div., Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • B.A., Hardin-Simmons University

Courses Taught

  • Biblical Hebrew
  • Old Testament

Selected Publications and Translation Projects

Contact Information

Academics Office