Joshua Harris (pastor)

Joshua Harris

Joshua Harris in 2007
Born Joshua Eugene Harris
(1974-12-30) December 30, 1974
Dayton, Ohio
Occupation Pastor, author
Nationality American
Spouse Shannon Harris
Children 3

Joshua Eugene Harris (born December 30, 1974 in Dayton, Ohio) is an American pastor and author, and is widely known as the author of I Kissed Dating Goodbye (1997), in which he explains what he believes to be the biblical approach to dating and relationships. Harris was lead pastor of Covenant Life Church, the founding church of Sovereign Grace Ministries, in Gaithersburg, Maryland from 2004 until 2015, when he stepped down to become a student at Regent College, Vancouver.[1] [2]


Harris is the first of seven children born to Gregg and Sono Harris, pioneers in the Christian homeschooling movement. He is of Japanese descent on his mother's side.[3]

He published New Attitude, a magazine aimed at fellow homeschoolers, from 1994 to 1997. His first book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye was published in 1997 and has sold nearly one million copies worldwide.[4] Subsequent publications include Boy Meets Girl (2000), in part describing his engagement to his wife, Shannon; Not Even a Hint: Guarding Your Heart Against Lust, released in 2003 and renamed Sex Is Not the Problem (Lust Is) in 2005; and Stop Dating the Church!: Fall in Love with the Family of God (2004).

Harris' book, Dug Down Deep highlights his passion for what he calls "Humble Orthodoxy." It was released in early 2010. In it, Harris shares his own journey towards a love for theology, and theological concepts that changed his life.

In 1997 Harris moved from Oregon to Gaithersberg, MD to be a "pastoral intern." [5] [6]Here "C. J. Mahaney, a charismatic Calvinist and founding pastor of megachurch Covenant Life Church, took Harris under his wing and groomed him to take over the church."[7]

Harris started Sovereign Grace Ministries' New Attitude Conference for Christian singles in 1999, with inspiration and guidance from Louie Giglio, founder of Passion Conferences. [7] From 1999 until 2011 he continued frequently to organize and lead this conference, although in 2009 it was renamed "Next." [8]The primary focus of New Attitude was to equip young Christians with what organizers believe is the biblical truth of the gospel, and to stress the importance of the church in the lives of all Christians. New Attitude's focus is that the truth should be conveyed with humility and uses the term Humble Orthodoxy to represent this.

Harris assumed the role of senior pastor for Covenant Life Church in 2004 at the age of 30. [5] In January, 2015 he announced his resignation from that role due to a desire to broaden his views and connect to other parts of Christianity. "Harris said the isolation of Covenant Life, and of a small cluster of churches of which it was a part, may have fed leadership mistakes, including the decision of pastors — himself among them — to handle a child sexual abuse case internally instead of going to police." [2]

His brothers, twins Alex and Brett, lead the youth movement The Rebelution. Rebelution is a neologism defined by its creators as "a teenage rebellion against low expectations."



  1. Lee, Morgan (5 February 2015). "Why Joshua Harris Kissed His Megachurch Goodbye". Christianity Today. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  2. 1 2 Boorstein, Michelle (January 30, 2015). "Pastor Joshua Harris, an evangelical outlier, heads to mainstream seminary". Washington Post.
  3. "Trip to Japan". Retrieved June 9, 2010.
  4. Tom Heinen (March 28, 2007). "In conservative courtship, dating's outdated". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved March 28, 2008.
  5. 1 2 Wishall, Garrett (August 17, 2009). "'It's a role of service:' Joshua Harris on being senior pastor of Covenant Life Church". Towers. Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  6. "Joshua Harris Author Profile". Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  7. 1 2 Hansen, Colllin (September 22, 2006). "Young, Restless, Reformed Calvinism is making a comeback—and shaking up the church.". Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  8. Harris, Josh (January 2012). "New Attitude, Na, Next 1999-2012". Josh Harris. Retrieved May 19, 2014.

External links

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