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Dallas Theological Seminary
Established 1924
Type Evangelical Seminary
Chancellor Dr. Charles Swindoll
President Dr. Mark Bailey
Faculty 120 (Fall 2008)[1]
Students 2,050 (Fall 2008)[1]
Doctoral students 99 (Fall 2008)[1]
Location Dallas, Texas, USA
Affiliations Non-denominational

Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) is an evangelical theological seminary located in Dallas, Texas and the North American institution for popularizing the theological system known as Dispensationalism. DTS has extension campuses in Atlanta, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, and Tampa and a multi-lingual online education program. The seminary is known for having trained a number of high profile theologians over the decades.



DTS was founded as Evangelical Theological College in 1924 by Dr. Lewis Sperry Chafer, who taught the first class of 13 students, and William Henry Griffith Thomas,[2][3] who was to have been the school's first theology professor but died before the first classes began. Their vision was a school where expository Bible preaching was taught simply, and under Chafer's leadership, DTS pioneered one of the first four-year degrees in theology, the Master of Theology (Th.M.). The present location of the school was purchased in 1926 and Doctor of Theology (Th.D.) programs were started in 1927.[4] Chafer remained president until his death in 1952.

Early edition of Bibliotheca Sacra

DTS has continually published a quarterly entitled Bibliotheca Sacra since 1934. In 1983, a complete collection of "Bib Sac" articles was published as a book commemorating fifty years of the magazine.[5]

Dr. John F. Walvoord, himself a graduate, took over president after Chafer's death in 1952. In 1974, DTS added a two-year Master of Arts (MA) program in biblical studies, and in 1982, a two-year program in Christian Education was begun. In addition to these, a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program was opened in 1980. Walvoord retired as DTS president in 1986.[3]

From 1986 to 1994, Dr. Donald K. Campbell served as president of DTS. During his tenure, DTS opened a three-year MA program in Biblical Counseling and a two-year MA program in Biblical exegesis and linguistics.[3]

DTS graduate Dr. Chuck Swindoll was then president of the school from 1994 to 2001, and now serves as the school's Chancellor. Since 2001, Dr. Mark Bailey has served as president.[3] Under Bailey's tenure, the seminary added a two-year MA program in media and communication, a Spanish D.Min. program, and a multi-lingual online education program.

As of Fall 2007, DTS has nearly 12,000 alumni serving in various ministerial capacities in 97 countries worldwide.[1]


DTS was accredited in 1969 by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and in 1994 by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.[6]

The school is also a member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), the Evangelical Training Association (ETA), the Jerusalem University College, and the Institute of Theological Studies (ITS).[6]


1993 reprint of Chafer's Systematic Theology

DTS is known as a center of modern Dispensational teaching[7][8][9][10][11] due to Dr. Chafer's development of a systematic theology which approaches the Bible with a "premillennial, dispensational interpretation of the Scriptures."[2] His eight-volume work describing this approach to theology, Systematic Theology, was first published in 1948 and is still a required textbook for some courses at DTS.[2]

Notable theological beliefs of the school include: premillennialism, dispensationalism, and Biblical inerrancy. The faculty, while still subscribing to dispensationalism, represents varying perspectives reflecting the development that has occurred in that school of thought in the last few decades of the twentieth century. The school considers itself non-denominational within Protestantism, and has classes in every one of the 66 books of the Bible.[6]

Notable alumni and faculty


  1. ^ a b c d statistical information.
  2. ^ a b c DTS Library Celebrating 80 years.
  3. ^ a b c d DTS A Brief History.
  4. ^ DTS Historical Milestones.
  5. ^ Fifty Years of Bib Sac listing at
  6. ^ a b c DTS Accreditation
  7. ^ The Founders. Summer 1992.
  8. ^ Baptist Bible College May 1999.
  9. ^ Second Blessing Models of Sanctification and Early Dallas Dispensationalism. The Master's Seminary Journal, Spring 2004.
  10. ^ Dallas Observer. February 9, 2006
  11. ^ October 2005.

External links



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