Matthews-ShelleyAssociate Professor of New Testament
Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX

Shelly Matthews is the author of many books including The Acts of the Apostles: Taming Tongues of Fire (2014) and Perfect Martyr: The Stoning of Stephen and the Construction of Christian Identity (2010). In the Society of Biblical Literature, she serves on steering committees for the sections on Early Jewish Christian Relations and Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative. Her current research focuses on ideas of cosmic judgment and the resurrection of the flesh in early Christian literature.

Academic Credentials

  • Th.D., Harvard Divinity School
  • M.Div., Boston University School of Theology
  • B.A. University of North Dakota

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Professor of New Testament, Brite Divinity School, 2011–
  • Associate Professor of Religion, Furman University, 2004–2011
  • Assistant Professor of Religion, Furman University, 1998–2004
  • Lecturer in Religious Studies, Tufts University, 1997–1998
  • Lecturer in Religious Studies, University of North Dakota, 1996, 1987–1990


  • The Acts of the Apostles: Taming Tongues of Fire (2014)
  • Acts: A Feminist Rhetorical Reading (2013)
  • Perfect Martyr: The Stoning of Stephen and the Construction of Christian Identity, 2010; (paperback, 2012)
  • First Converts: Rich Pagan Women and the Rhetoric of Mission in Early Judaism and Christianity, 2001.

Grants, Awards & Honors

  • Post-doctoral fellowship from the American Academy of University Women, 2004–2005
  • Research fellow at the Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research, St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, 2004–2005
  • New Scholars Award from the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion for article entitled “Thinking of Thecla: Issues in Feminist Historiography,” 2001
  • Dean’s Dissertation Fellowship, Harvard Divinity School, 1996–1997
  • Dempster Fellowship, United Methodist Church 1995; 1992–1993
  • Wesley Merit Scholar, Boston University School of Theology, 1984–1985; 1985–1986; 1986–1987
  • Phi Beta Kappa, 1984

Professional Memberships

  • Fellow, Jesus Seminar, 2006–
  • Joint Member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the American Academy of Religion, 1992–
  • North American Patristics Society, 2004–
  • Ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church, Dakotas Area Conference, 1987–
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