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Fritz Guy

Fritz Guy

American theologian
Fritz Guy
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American theologian
Is Religious scholar Theologian
From United States of America
Type Religion
Gender male
Birth 1930, St. Cloud, Stearns County, Minnesota, USA
Age 90 years
La Sierra University
University of Chicago
Andrews University
The details


Fritz Guy (born 1930) is a Seventh-day Adventist theologian and Research Professor of Philosophical Theology at La Sierra University in Riverside, California. He has worked as a college and university professor, an academic administrator, and a church pastor. 

In recent years Guy has espoused progressive Adventist theology, with lectures and articles exploring the temporality of God, the hope of universal salvation, the theology of creation, and the morality of same-sex relationships. In a 1985 survey of North American Adventist academics, Guy tied for fourth place among the Adventist authors who had most influenced them. In 1989, Gary Chartier noted a widespread view that Guy "was the leading Adventist systematic theologian of his generation."


Born on April 19, 1930, in St. Cloud, Minnesota, Guy graduated from Cedar Lake Academy (now Great Lakes Adventist Academy) in Michigan in 1948. After initially planning to complete a physics major, Guy earned a BA in theology from La Sierra College (now La Sierra University) in 1952. Following work as a pastor and evangelist in southern California and marriage to Marcia Janice Specht in 1954, he enrolled at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, then in Washington, D.C., receiving an MA in theology in 1955. He served as assistant editor of The Youth's Instructor (later Insight) for three years.

He became a member of the La Sierra faculty in 1961, the same year in which he took a BD from the Seminary (by then located in Berrien Springs, Michigan, and becoming part of what is now Andrews University). Guy earned a PhD in Christian theology from the University of Chicago, where his dissertation was supervised by Langdon Gilkey, in 1971. Distinguished historian of American religion Martin E. Marty later recalled: “years after [Guy] left [the University of Chicago Divinity School], . . . Langdon Gilkey . . . was doing some reviewing of our graduates. I remember him saying that when he looked over the cohort of students and graduates, he said that as good a theological mind as he’d met at Chicago, a mind well put to use, was Fritz Guy’s.” During his Chicago study leave, La Sierra became a campus of Loma Linda University; he served as associate dean (1972–74) and dean (1974–77) of Loma Linda's College of Arts and Sciences. He left California in 1977 to take up an appointment as Professor of Theology at Andrews University. During this period he served as secretary of the university committee that drafted a new Statement of Fundamental Beliefs for the Adventist Church, which was subsequently adopted (with some revisions) by the church’s 1980 General Conference session in Dallas, Texas.

Guy returned to California in 1984, this time as pastor for university faculty and staff relations and theologian-in-residence at the Loma Linda University Church. Appointed president of the newly independent La Sierra University in 1990, he rejoined the full-time faculty in 1993 as University Professor of Theology and Philosophy. Since 2002, he has been Research Professor of Philosophical Theology; he is currently the senior active member of La Sierra's faculty. He is the author of one book and of sixty-five published articles and essays, and the co-editor of three books. While his published work has focused at various points on most of the traditional loci of systematic theology as well as on a number of topics related to ethics, the philosophy of religion, and higher education, his principal research interests are theological method, the philosophy of time, and the relationship between religion and science.

Guy served as president of the Adventist Society for Religious Studies in 1980. He received a Rockefeller Fellowship for doctoral study in 1967–68. He was Andrews University’s honored alum in 1985 and alum of the year for Loma Linda University’s College of Arts and Sciences in 1988. La Sierra presented him with an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree in 2002.

Fritz and Marcia Guy became the parents of three children — Linda, Richard, and Susan. He has six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Marcia Guy died in 2006.



  • Meeting the Secular Mind: Some Adventist Perspectives, co-edited with Humberto M. Rasi (Berrien Springs, MI: Andrews University Press, 1985, 1987). ASIN B000ZOR5PY
  • Thinking Theologically: Adventist Christianity and the Interpretation of Faith (Berrien Springs, MI: Andrews University Press, 1999; publisher's page). ISBN 978-1-883925-27-7
  • Understanding Genesis: Contemporary Adventist Perspectives, co-edited with Brian Bull and Ervin Taylor (Riverside, CA: Adventist Today Foundation, 2006). ISBN 0-9786141-1-9
  • Christianity and Homosexuality: Some Seventh-day Adventist Perspectives, co-edited with David Ferguson and David R. Larson (Roseville, CA: Adventist Forums, 2008)

Articles and pamphlets:

  • “‘The Lord’s Day’ in the Letter of Ignatius to the Magnesians.” Andrews University Seminary Studies, 2 (1964): 1-17.
  • “Conversion,” “Sin,” and “Virgin Birth,” in Seventh-day Adventist Encyclopedia, ed. Don F. Neufeld, 303-4, 1196–97, 1379. Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald, 1966. Rev. ed. 1976; 349-50, 1351–52, 1556.
  • “Comments on a Recent Whiteheadian Doctrine of God.” Andrews University Seminary Studies, 4 (1966): 107-34.
  • “Divine Forgiveness as Experienced Event.” Andrews University Seminary Studies, 5 (1967): 87-100.
  • “The Consecration of an Educated Mind.” Loma Linda University Scope, 7/19 (Aug.-Sept. 1970): 21, 24, 29, 30.
  • “Affirming the Reality of God.” In The Stature of Christ: Essays in Honor of Edward Heppenstall, ed. Vern Carner and Gary Stanhiser, 13-22. Loma Linda, CA: Privately printed, 1970.
  • “Calvin, John,” and “Zwingli, Ulrich.” In The Westminster Dictionary of the Christian Church, ed. Jerald L. Brauer, 147-49, 886-87. Philadelphia: Westminster, 1971.
  • Contemporary Adventism and the Crisis of Belief.” Spectrum, 4/1 (winter 1972): 19-28.
  • “The Meaning of the Sabbath,” Insight, 5/6 (5 Feb. 1974): 16-18; 5/7 (12 Feb. 1974): 16-18; 5/8 (19 Feb. 1973): 12-13.
  • “How ‘Secular’ Should Adventist Theology Be?” Ministry, 47/10 (Oct. 1974): 8-9; 47/11 (Nov. 1974): 8-9.
  • “How Jesus’ Death Affects Your Own.” These Times, 83/14 (Dec. 1974): 23-25.
  • The Presence of Ultimacy,” Spectrum, 9/1 (winter 1977): 48-54. Reprinted in Festival of the Sabbath, ed. Roy Branson, 29-41. Takoma Park, MD: Association of Adventist Forums, 1985.
  • “What Does Christianity Offer Me?” These Times, 87/3 (Mar. 1978): 16-18.
  • “The Misunderstanding of the Church.” Ministry, 53/8 (Aug. 1980): 8-10.
  • Confidence in Salvation: The Meaning of the Sanctuary,” Spectrum, 11/2 (Nov. 1980): 44-52.
  • “Why I Am a Christian.” Signs of the Times, (108/7 (July 1981), 10-11, 14. Spanish: “Por que soi Christiano.” El Centinela, 86/2 (Feb. 1982): 8-10.
  • Adventist Theology Today.” Spectrum, 12/1 (Sept. 1981): 6-14.
  • “Bridge of Assurance: A Sanctuary Theology for Today.” College People, 2/7 (Nov. 1982): 22-25.
  • “A Time for Being: Or, Why Karl Marx Should Have Gone to Sabbath School.” Insight, 14/5 (1 Feb. 1983): 11-12.
  • Good News From the Heavenly Sanctuary: God’s Continuing Initiative.” Spectrum, 14/1 (Aug. 1983): 39-46.
  • “On Becoming Radical Christians.” Adventist Review, 163/15 (10 Apr. 1986): 14-15.
  • “The Secular Meaning of the Sabbath.” In Meeting the Secular Mind: Some Adventist Perspectives, ed. Humberto M. Rasi and Fritz Guy, 139-53. Berrien Springs, MI: Andrews University Press, 1985; rev. ed. 1987.
  • “A Frank Look at Ellen White.” Adventist Review, 163/28 (10 July 1986): 8-10.
  • “Dynamics of the Advent Hope,” in Pilgrimage of Hope, ed. Roy Branson, 109-21. Takoma Park, MD: Association of Adventist Forums, 1986.
  • “What the Trinity Means to Me.” Adventist Review, 163/37 (11 Sept. 1986): 12-14.
  • “Toward a Seventh-day Adventist Theology of Church: Some Proposed Additions to the Agenda.” Church Ministry Report, 1/1 (Spring 1987): 1-5.
  • “Theological Reflections Regarding AIDS.” Loma Linda University Ethics Center Update, 3/2 (May 1987): 2, 8.
  • “Eternity in Time.” Adventist Review, 164/22 (28 May 1987): 8-11.
  • “The Future and the Present: The Meaning of the Advent Hope.” In The Advent Hope in Scripture and History, ed. V. Norskov Olsen, 211-29. Hagerstown: Review and Herald, 1987.
  • For Adventists: An Imperative to Do Something.” Spectrum, 18/1 (Oct. 1987): 20-25.
  • “Toward Gender Inclusiveness in Adventist Education: Some Personal (and Partisan) Observations.” Journal of Adventist Education, 50/3 (Feb.-Mar. 1988): 9-10, 33-35.
  • “The Ultimate Triumph of Love.” Adventist Review, 165/32 (11 Aug. 1988): 12-14.
  • “The Universality of God’s Love.” In The Grace of God, the Will of Man, ed. Clark H. Pinnock, 31-49. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1989.
  • “Ethical and Legal Dimensions of AIDS for the Health Professions.” In AIDS and the Health Professions, ed. Joyce W. Hopp and Elizabeth A. Rogers, 191-209. Philadelphia: F. A. Davis, 1989.
  • Negotiating the Creation-Evolution Wars.” Spectrum, 20/1 (Oct. 1989), 40-46.
  • “The Ultimacy of God’s Love.” Adventist Review, October, 1992.
  • “The Future of Adventist Higher Education: A Look at the Options.” Journal of Adventist Education, April–May, 1994, 14-20.
  • A More ‘Liberalized’ Adventist Future.” Spectrum, 24/3 (Dec. 1994): 18-32,
  • “The Journey of an Idea.” Adventist Heritage, 16/3 (Spr. 1995): 9-13
  • “The Disappearance of Paradise.” In The Welcome Table: Setting a Place for Ordained Women, ed. Patricia A. Habada and Rebecca Frost Brillhart, 137-54. Langley Park, MD: TEAM, 1995.
  • Why Should the La Sierra University Church Ordain Women? (pamphlet) Riverside, CA: La Sierra University Church, 1995.
  • “Thinking and Higher Education.” Preface to Thinking Critically: Views and Values in College Teaching, ed. Patricia Foster, v-vii. Riverside, CA: La Sierra University Press, 1996.
  • “Revisioning General Education: The La Sierra Experience” (with Rennie Schoepflin). Journal of Adventist Education, Apr./May 1996, 4-7.
  • Four Ways into the Next Millennium.” Spectrum, 25/4 (June 1996): 25-31.
  • “Connecting the Past to the Future.” Auxiliary News, 58/3 (Spring 1997): 5-7.
  • “La Desaparición del Paraiso.” In Bienvenida a la Mesa: Preparando un Lugar en la Mess para la Mujer en el Ministerio, ed. Patricia A Habada and Rebecca Frost Brillhart, 133-51. Langley Park, MD: TEAM, 1997.
  • “La Sierra’s Tradition of Excellence in Education.” La Sierra Today, fall 1997, 34-35.
  • “Time for Healing.” Adventist Review, Aug. 20, 1998, 22-24.
  • “How Scripture Should Function in Theology,” Ministry, 71/3 (Mar., 1999): 18-22.
  • The Moral Imperative to Ordain Women in Ministry (pamphlet). College Place, WA: Walla Walla College Church, 1999.
  • “Genesis and Geology: Some Contemporary Theological Perspectives.” In Creation Reconsidered: Scientific, Biblical, and Theological Perspectives, ed. James L. Hayward, 289-301. Roseville, CA: Association of Adventist Forums, 2000).
  • “With All Our Minds,” University Vitæ, Nov. 16, 2000, 8, 7
  • “God’s Time: Infinite Temporality and the Ultimate Reality of Becoming” Spectrum, 29/1 (winter 2001), 19-28
  • “Can Education Be Both ‘Higher’ and ‘Adventist’?” Journal of Adventist Education, 64/4 (April–May 2002), 4-8.
  • “Is There a Train Wreck in the Adventist Future?” Spectrum, 30/3 (summer 2002), 3, 79.
  • “Interpreting Genesis 1 in the Twenty-first Century.” Spectrum, 31/2 (spring 2003), 5-16.
  • “Then a Miracle Occurs,” with Brian Bull. Spectrum, 32/2 (spring 2004), 30-40; repr. Understanding Genesis: Contemporary Adventist Perspectives, 53-69. Riverside, CA: Adventist Today Foundation, 2006.
  • “Uncovering the Origins of the Statement of Twenty-Seven Fundamental Beliefs.” Spectrum, 32/3 (summer 2004), 19-29.
  • “Interview.” Shabbat Shalom, 51/2 (2004), 11-14.
  • “How Inclusive Is Our Hope?” Spectrum, 33/2 (spring 2005), 16-25.
  • “The Purpose and Function of Scripture: Preface to a Theology of Creation.” In Understanding Genesis: Contemporary Adventist Perspectives, 86-101. Riverside, CA: Adventist Today Foundation, 2006.
  • “Same-Sex Love.” In Christianity and Homosexuality: Some Seventh-day Adventist Perspectives, part 4, 43-62. Roseville, CA: Adventist Forums, 2008.

Book Reviews of:

  • Toward An American Theology, by Herbert W. Richardson. Andrews University Seminary Studies 7 (1969): 7-13.
  • Prophetess of Health: A Study of Ellen G. White by Ronald L. Numbers. Spectrum, 8/2 (Jan. 1976): 20-27.
  • The Gift of Time: Time in Culture and the Kingdom of God, by William. T. McConnell. Fides et Historia 17/1 (fal1-winter 1984): 86-88.
  • Passing on the Torch, by Roger Dudley. Journal of Adventist Education 49/5 (summer 1987): 21, 37.
  • Women in Ministry: Biblical and Historical Perspectives, ed. Nancy Jean Vyhmeister. Ministry 71/1 (Jan. 1999): 28-29.
  • What, Then, Is Time, by Eva Brann (Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 1999), in Time’s News, newsletter of the International Society for the Study of Time, 31 (Dec. 2000), 9-10.
  • Time, Creation and World Order, ed. Mogens Wegener (Aarhus, Denmark, and Oakville, CT: Aarhus University Press, 1999), KronoScope: Journal for the Study of Time, 2 (2002).

Unpublished research:

  • "An Interpretation of the Concept of Conversion in the Published Writings of Ellen G. White" (MA thesis, 1955)
  • "Man and His Time: Three Contemporary Theological Interpretations" (PhD dissertation, 1971)
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