Russ’s passion for the Bible derives from seeing the grace and glory of God in the stories and poems of broken people in the Old Testament. The psalms give voice to our darkest moments of pain and anger, showing us that God welcomes our rawest emotion. Ecclesiastes and Job help us confront suffering and injustice in life. The failures of Noah, Jacob, David . . . these are the stories Russ identifies with, and these are the stories that introduced him—and kept him tethered—to the God of the Bible.
Russ is convinced that these stories and poems still speak to the brokenness of humans today, beckoning us into the arms of the God who made us and loves us even though we, too, are riddled with sin, hurt, and a longing to be loved. Because of that conviction, he studied Old Testament at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (MA, biblical languages; PhD, Old Testament) and has been teaching at various colleges and seminaries since 2011. Russ writes widely for lay and academic audiences about all things Old Testament and its relationship to the Christian life. He, his wife, and their three sons live in beautiful north Idaho, where you’ll find them gardening, cooking, and trying to tame the havoc that three boys wreak.