Eagle Brook Pastor Jason Strand wins Bethel preaching award

For preaching in ways that transform lives, Eagle Brook Senior Pastor Jason Strand ’01, S’07 won Bethel Seminary’s first annual Preaching Excellence Award.

By Heather Schnese S’12, content specialist

June 20, 2024 | Noon

Bethel Seminary Dean Peter Vogt and Bethel President Ross Allen awarded Eagle Brook Senior Pastor Jason Strand ’01, S’07 the Preaching Excellence Award at the Preaching Showcase on May 1, 2024.

Bethel Seminary Dean Peter Vogt and Bethel President Ross Allen awarded Eagle Brook Senior Pastor Jason Strand ’01, S’07 the Preaching Excellence Award at the Preaching Showcase on May 1, 2024.

Using skills and knowledge gained during his time at Bethel Seminary, Eagle Brook Senior Pastor Jason Strand preaches to an estimated 51,000 people in person and online across 12 campuses—soon to be 14—each week. For boldly and effectively proclaiming the truth in ways that transform lives, he was awarded Bethel Seminary’s first annual Preaching Excellence Award at the Preaching Showcase on May 1, 2024. This included $500 to be donated to Strand’s ministry or organization of choice.

“We created this award to support the local church and encourage people who are serving their congregations well by dedicating themselves week in and week out to excellent preaching,” says Bethel Seminary Dean Peter Vogt. “Jason lives up to the ideal of understanding the truth of Scripture and being able to communicate that effectively while also demonstrating the relevance of Scripture for life in this complex and broken world.”

Strand says his time at Bethel Seminary was formative, and he’s grateful for the professors who worked to provide him with a solid biblical foundation. “I most appreciated my New Testament courses with Jeannine Brown and Dan Gurtner and Old Testament with Vogt. Those classes helped me dig deeper into the Word and have helped me as a pastor to this day,” he says. “I also had a few church ministries courses with Paul Johnson and John Cionca that helped shape some of my views about church and leadership.”

Strand received his Master of Divinity in 2007 and began working at Eagle Brook as a teaching pastor. He became lead pastor in 2020 and since then, the church—its mission: empowered by God to reach others for Christ—has continued to grow exponentially.

“There’s nothing more exciting to me than hearing a story about someone who applied God’s message and used it in their life.”

— Jason Strand ’01, S’07
On preaching, Strand says the biggest challenges are the time and effort it takes to study, write, edit, and practice. “But there’s nothing more exciting to me than hearing a story about someone who applied God’s message and used it in their life,” he says.

Since its founding in 1871, Bethel Seminary has been committed to preparing leaders like Strand for effective ministry leadership—part of that is biblically-grounded, theologically-sound, engaging, and relevant preaching. “Our passion is to advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ among all peoples in culturally sensitive ways,” says Vogt. “One of the ways we do that is by preparing people who can ‘rightly handle the word of truth.’”

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