Dr. Brent Cook, a faculty member in the Division of Biblical Studies and Theology, is renowned for his apologetics and worldview class, often cited as one of the most influential classes in the BJU core.
Cook has been a faculty member at BJU since 2006; in that time, he has impacted students both in the University and the Seminary through courses such as apologetics and worldview, themes in western thought, ethics, and the Gospel of Matthew. Cook said he especially enjoys teaching his church history class. In fact, to study the history of the church Cook has traveled to 15 different countries, including Israel, England, Scotland, Greece and Italy. In addition to teaching at BJU, Cook pastors University Baptist Church in Clemson, South Carolina.
However, Cook’s real passion revolves around his wife and three children, Collete, 10, Collin, 8, and Asher, 6. Asher was adopted from China at a young age. Cook said his family’s adoption journey can be traced to a conversation he had with a friend many years ago.
She quoted James 1:27 where James says true religion is to care for the widow and the orphan,” Cook said. “I had never thought of that before: the idea that a really basic component of Christianity was to adopt a child. That wasn’t on my list of basic things.”
Today, Cook and his wife are strong advocates of Christians adopting. “The next generation of the church has to really prepare to adopt, especially if you want to see an end to abortion,” Cook said. “If the parents don’t want them, what becomes of the kids? And the best place for kids is in a home. So, you’ve got to be pro-adoption if you are pro-life.”
While acknowledging the financial and emotional risk that adoption entails, Cook firmly believes that helping children in need is well worth any price. Though Cook admits that adoption can be a difficult journey, he believes that providing a home for a child is worth any heartbreak.
“In the end, it’s the Great Commission,” Cook said. “It’s reaching out to somebody, bringing them into your home, and sharing the Gospel with them at a young age and discipling them to become a life-long follower of Christ.”
“It’s a very powerful idea to realize that the same Spirit who sustained Christ is sustaining me,” Cook said. “For students who are considering [adoption] or are scared about [adoption], I’ll just say that the Lord provides. So, I would say, don’t ask why you should, it’s that why you shouldn’t.”
To learn more about the Cook family and adoption as ministry, see Cook’s article “The Christian and Adoption” in the August 2018 edition of BJUToday.