Earl holds undergraduate degrees from Ohio Valley College and Lipscomb, an M.A. in Biblical Studies from Lipscomb, and a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Saint Louis University. He has taught at Lipscomb since 1990 and for the last thirteen years has served as Director of Missional Studies and professor in the College of Bible and Ministry. He has led mission and education events in Europe, Australia, India, Russia, Brazil, Ghana and China. Earl also serves as the founding director of the Institute for Christian Spirituality, established at Lipscomb in the fall of 2009.
Earl has authored numerous books and published articles, including entries in The Encyclopedia of Early Christianity (Everett Ferguson, ed., Garland) and The Encyclopedia of Ancient History (Wiley-Blackwell, 2012). He is a regular lecturer at the International Conference of Patristic Studies held at Oxford University in England. In 2004 he co-authored Living God’s Love: an Invitation to Christian Spirituality with Gary Holloway. He has also participated in writing a meditative commentary series on the New Testament (Leafwood Publishers). His latest book is Un Viaggio Nel Vangelo di Luca published in 2011 (Perciballi), a meditational commentary written specifically for the Italian culture.
He is married to the former Rebecca Nance of Nashville, Tennessee. They have three grown and happily married children, Rachel, Beth, and David. They also have been blessed with three grandchildren. Rebecca and Earl have planted churches in Italy (1978-1984) and Illinois (1986-1990).