Remembering Dave Rogstad

Dave Rogstad was the first serious Christian I got to know, eight years after committing my life to Christ. We met at Caltech in the astronomy department where I arrived to serve as a research fellow alongside Dave, a senior research fellow in radio astronomy. What struck me about Dave was that he not only believed the Bible, he lived it.

The Holy Spirit used Dave to transform my walk with Christ. Dave introduced me to other Bible-believing Christians, and he helped me find a church where the pastors and leaders also believed and taught that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant Word of God. Just as importantly, Dave encouraged me to share my reasons for faith in Jesus Christ with people beyond the Caltech campus, not just on it.

Dave also somehow persuaded the pastors and leaders of the church we attended to take me on as part of the pastoral team. My specific assignment was to train fellow Christians in how to use the book of nature to bring people to the book of Scripture and into a relationship with Christ. When this outreach endeavor brought more than a hundred people to faith, it was Dave who stepped up to help teach Bible studies for these adults and their children. Later, when a new church was formed from this group, Dave became one of the young congregation’s teaching pastors.

In 1985, as Kathy and I were being challenged by pastors and friends to launch Reasons to Believe (RTB), Dave was the first one I called to ask if he would serve on our board of directors. A decade later, when the ministry needed his executive skills, Dave joined our staff, first as a COO and then later as a part-time scholar. He remained a faithful, valued member of the RTB team until the day of his death. 

I am eternally grateful to God for bringing Dave Rogstad into my life. I will miss him greatly.