Sagu News

Get Monthly Content


Waxahachie, Texas – April 21, 2016 – Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) professor and the Graduate Chair for Theological Studies in the Harrison Graduate School Dr. John Wyckoff announced his retirement after serving for 42 years.

Dr. Wyckoff grew up on a farm in northwest Oklahoma . He graduated from Southwestern Oklahoma State with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry with a minor in mathematics. He later came to SAGU to continue his education and earned a bachelor’s degree. He then earned a master’s degree from Southern Nazarene University and completed his Ph.D. in religion from Baylor University. He has served as a pastor, preacher, teacher, and author for many years.

His Ph.D. dissertation topic, “The Relationship of the Holy Spirit to Biblical Hermeneutics,” was published by Wipf & Stock in 2010.

Dr. Wyckoff authored a chapter in ” Systematic Theology” on the baptism in the Holy Spirit, a chapter in a festschrift in honor of Dr George M. Flattery entitled “ Contemporary Relevance of Glossolalia: Problems and Benefits, ” and a chapter in a festschrift in honor of Dr. Ben Aker entitled “ He Will Guide You into All Truth .”

He has published books such as: “Pneuma and Logos: The Role of the Holy Spirit in Hermeneutics, ” and ” The Roots of Pentecostal Belief; A Pentecostal Perspective.”

In 2014, Dr. John Wyckoff was appointed by the Executive Presbytery of the General Council of the Assemblies of God to serve as a member of the Commission on Doctrinal Purity for a term ending in November 2017.

We sat down with Dr. Wyckoff and reminisced on the past 42 years at SAGU.

Q1: When did you feel called into ministry?

“During my sophomore year at Southwestern Oklahoma State University (SOSU). I then began planning to move to Waxahachie immediately to pursue a ministry degree at SAGU (formerly SAGC). However, my pastor encouraged me to finish what I had started and graduate from SOSU. By staying, I organized and established the Chi Alpha group that is still ministering on-campus 52 years later.”

Q2: Did you know you wanted to be a teacher? How did you end up teaching at SAGU?

“When I come to SAGU in 1966, I was hired to teach chemistry and mathematics during the school terms of 1966-67 and 1967-68. After a four-year pastorate with my wife and earning my M.A. in Religion at Southern Nazarene University , I was invited to teach Bible and Theology beginning Fall 1976 at SAGU. I’ve taught Bible and Theology at SAGU ever since.”

Q3: What are major changes have come about during your career?

I would say the biggest change during my career at SAGU was the growth of the institution. When I first came the only buildings were the Administration Building, Nelson Library, Collins Hall, Davis Hall, Kendrick, Claxton Gym, a print shop behind Claxton, and two temporary wood-framed buildings. Enrollment was around 500–600 students, all on-campus. The school was a combination of a Bible and Junior College that was accredited only by the American Association of Bible Colleges with only 25 faculty members.”

Q4: What was your favorite class to teach?

I really enjoyed teaching Pentecostal Doctrine and History. There is always a special presence of the Holy Spirit while teaching that class that evokes great theological discussions amongst students. I believed that is the most important class on campus.”

Q5: What are some of your favorite memories during your time at SAGU?

“There were many special times. The interaction with students and discussions during class, especially theology classes like New Testament Theology and Pentecostal Doctrine and History. I also enjoyed the one-on-one discussions with students, speaking in chapel, special altar times and discussing Biblical Theology with other faculty members and colleagues.

Another great memory was right after I completed my Ph.D., I spoke in Chapel on my dissertation entitled “The Role of the Holy Spirit in Biblical Hermeneutics.” During the altar time, several students were baptized in the Holy Spirit. This is just one example of how the Holy Spirit works in the lives of our students.”

Q6: Do you have any advice for future ministers or teachers?

“I do. Proverbs 3:5-6: ‘Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.”

Q7: What’s next for you?

“I want to continue to teach part-time and online. Also, continue to teach adult Sunday School class at University Assembly Church and preach and teach in churches in the area. I’d also like to do some writing and traveling.”

Q8: If you would sum up your time at SAGU in just a few sentences, what would you say?

Wonderful!  Rewarding!  Blessed!  Privileged! I cannot believe how privileged I have been. I came from the sand hills in northwest Oklahoma and in my 42 years here I have had the opportunity to impact many students who are now impacting the world.”

In 1990, Dr. Wyckoff was named SAGU’s Distinguished Faculty of the year . He won the Assemblies of God Delta Sigma National Educator Award as well as, the Assemblies of God Billie Davis Award of Excellence in Christian Education in 2003. Three of his former students published their book ” Festschrift , Trajectories in the Book of Acts,” in his honor in 2010.

Alumnus Joshua Simpson said, “Dr. Wyckoff has greatly impacted my life and countless others. He has certainly stoked a passion for theology through his teaching and mentorship. He has rocked my life and helped me to run after God and my calling to ministry.”

About SAGU:
Southwestern Assemblies of God University is a private, Christian university located 30 minutes south of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in Waxahachie, Texas. The university was established in 1927, and now offers more than 70 associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees on campus or online. More information is available at or by calling 1-888-YES-SAGU.

Back to Top