Ted A. Smith
The Rev. Dr. Ted A. Smith works at the intersections of practical and political theology, tracing connections between everyday church life and basic questions of politics and culture. He is the author of two books, The New Measures: A Theological History of Democratic Process (Cambridge University Press, 2007) and Weird John Brown: Divine Violence and the Limits of Ethics (Stanford University Press, 2014), and has written numerous essays for both scholarly and popular publications. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Louisville Institute and on the editorial boards of Political Theology and Practical Matters.
Prior to coming to Candler Smith taught at Vanderbilt Divinity School, where he served as Director of the Program in Theology and Practice. At Emory Smith also teaches in the Graduate Division of Religion and is affiliated with the Center for the Study of Law and Religion.
A Rhodes Scholar, Smith has been recognized for his academic achievements and ministerial excellence. He currently directs a major project funded by the Lilly Endowment, “Theological Education Between the Times: Consultations on the Meanings and Purposes of Theological Education,” which brings together scholars from a diverse array of institutions to consider the purposes of theological education in a time of great change.
Ordained to ministry in the Presbyterian Church (USA), Smith served two rural congregations before he began his doctoral studies. He continues to preach and teach widely.
Weird John Brown: Divine Violence and the Limits of Ethics. Stanford University Press,2014
The New Measures: A Theological History of Democratic Practice. Cambridge University Press,2007
View a collection of Smith's articles on Christian Century. Christian Century,
"From Silkworms to Songbirds: Why We No Longer Preach Like Jonathan Edwards," in Commonweal. Commonweal,2015
"Putting Flesh on Truthful Prayers of Confession," in Marginalia Review of Books and Political Theology Today. Los Angeles Review of Books,2015
"Reasoning about Exceptions," in Political Theology, vol. 15, no. 5. Maney,2014
"Troeltschian Questions for Ethnography as Christian Theology and Ethics," in Practical Matters, vol. 6. Emory University,2013
"Theological History, Practical Reason, and the Demands of Preaching Today," in Homiletic, vol. 37, no. 2. Academy of Homeltics,2012
"Politics in the Wake of Divine Violence," in Studies in Christian Ethics, vol. 25, no. 4. Sage,2014
"The Good, the Beautiful, and the Difference," in ARTS: Arts in Religious and Theological Studies, vol. 23, no. 3. Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies,2012
Grant for "Theological Education between the Times," Lilly Endowment, 2013.
Research Scholar Fellowship, Office of the Provost, Vanderbilt University, 2012.
Faculty Travel Grant, Carpenter Program in Religion, Gender and Sexuality, Vanderbilt University, 2010.
Post-doctoral fellowship, Princeton University Center for the Study of Religion (declined), 2005.
Woodruff Fellowship, Emory University, 1999-2004.
Bandy Fellowship in Preaching, Emory University, 1999-2002.
Elias Boudinot Award for excellence in small church ministry, 1997.
Roberts Scholarship in Preaching, Princeton Theological Seminary, 1995.
Wailes Memorial Prize in New Testament, Princeton Theological Seminary, 1994.
Rhodes Scholarship, Missouri and Jesus, 1990-1992.
"Great Birds of the Kingdom" - Prophetic Voices Centennial Academic Conference, Cannon Chapel, March 19, 2015
"Later Days: Isaiah 2:1-5: 1st Sunday of Advent - Year A" - Day1, December 1, 2013
"The Body We Can See From Here" - Sermon at the Conference of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians, 2009
Preaching in a Secular Age
Introduction to Preaching
Introduction to the Study of Religious Practices