David W. Bercot
In 1985, David Bercot was a successful attorney, practicing title law for the largest public utility in the state of Texas. The thought of ever becoming an author was the farthest thing from his mind. Nevertheless, despite being a career lawyer, Bercot's passion in life was Christ--not law. At the time, he was a member of a conservative evangelical church.
Although he enjoyed the fellowship at the church he was attending, it seemed to Bercot that some of the doctrines popularly taught by evangelicals--such as unconditional eternal security and their endorsement of war--contradicted the plain words of Scripture. When he questioned various ministers about these matters, he was told that the evangelical teaching on these doctrines was the "historical faith." Bercot certainly didn't want to put his own personal interpretations over the historical faith. Yet, he wasn't going to just take other people's word for it that these doctrines were truly the historical faith.
Bercot realized that the only way he could verify the historical faith was to read all of the existing writings of the early Christians who lived within a century or two after the apostles. So he purchased a set of the Ante-Nicene Fathers (which contain nearly all of the existing writings from Christians who wrote prior to the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325.) During 1985, he cut back his law practice as needed to devote the whole year to reading these ancient writings. These early Christian writings confirmed Bercot's views on eternal security and war. However, he was surprised to learn that most of the early Christian beliefs were different from his own beliefs--not only on theology but on lifestyle as well. Yet, when he went back and read the New Testament again, he realized that everything they taught was right there in the New Testament. But his preconceptions had blinded him to the plain language of Scripture.
Bercot immediately began sharing what he had discovered about the historical faith with various Christian friends. Soon these friends encouraged him to write a book about what he had discovered and how Christianity looked when it was still young. Bercot eventually followed up on their suggestion, and he wrote the book, "Will the Real Heretics Please Stand Up," which was published in 1989. That book contrasts early Christianity with modern Christianity.
Since then, Bercot has written a number of other books pertaining to early Christianity and committed Christian discipleship. He purposefully writes in a reader-friendly, conversational style, eschewing a more academic approach. As he said at one conference, "Scholars have had all of this information for centuries, and they have essentially done nothing with it. My goal is to get this information across to the average man or woman in the pews."
Bercot married Deborah Hart Darragh in 1972. They have three children and make their home in the Amberson Valley in Pennsylvania. On his personal website, www.davidbercot.com, Bercot has posted pictures of the beautiful Amberson Valley.