is a pastor in the Georgia-Cumberland Conference, serving the Knoxville Grace and Lenoir City Seventh-day Adventist Churches in eastern Tennessee. Formerly, he pastored the Lakeview and Hiram Seventh-day Adventist Churches near Atlanta, Georgia. Matthew grew up in the Chattanooga area of Tennessee and became a committed Seventh-day Adventist Christian at fifteen years old. He received his call to gospel ministry soon thereafter. His greatest passion in life is preaching and teaching the love of God, the good news of Jesus, and the three angels’ messages.
Matthew is pursuing a Ph.D. in Religion, Theological Studies, from the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Andrews University. He completed a M.Div. degree from the same institution in 2015. In 2010, he obtained B.A. degrees in Theology (Ministerial) and International Studies, Spanish Emphasis, at Southern Adventist University with one year fulfilled at Universidad Adventista del Plata in Argentina. Matthew continues involvement in several religious, theological, and philosophical societies. His academic areas of specialty are systematic and historical theology and New Testament studies. He has published and presented both nationally and internationally on the doctrines of God and salvation (see www.matthewtinkhamjr.com).
Matthew is married to Mariesa (Swisher) Tinkham, M.S.W. (Southern Adventist University), who is originally from the Dayton area of Ohio. She is a talented musician and caring licensed clinical social worker. Mariesa is pursuing a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Health Sciences at Western Michigan University. She is a life-long Seventh-day Adventist Christian and is passionate about music and youth ministries.
During free time, Matthew enjoys reading, language-learning, and wildflower identification. Mariesa loves all things music, swimming and staying active, and planning fun with friends. Together, they enjoy playing with their eight-year-old nephew, Kieran; caring for their two cats, Nestlee and Winter; international travel; and outdoor recreational activities—such as hiking, backpacking, and kayaking.
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