David Wood (Christian apologist)

David Sharpe Wood (born April 7, 1976)[2][3] is an American evangelical missionary[4][5][6] known for his critique of Islam. He is head of the Acts 17 Apologetics Ministry.[7] He is a member of the Society of Christian Philosophers and the Evangelical Philosophical Society.[4]

David Sharpe Wood
Personal information
Born (1976-04-07) April 7, 1976
NationalityUnited States
EducationB.A. Old Dominion University
Ph.D., Fordham University
ResidenceBronx, New York
OccupationChristian Preacher, Apologist, and YouTuber
Spouse(s)Marie Wood
YouTube information
Also known asActs17Apologetics
Years active2008–present
GenreCriticism, commentary, satire
  • 402,000+
  • (as of December 03, 2019)
Total views
  • 92,094,921+
  • (as of December 03, 2019)
100,000 subscribers 2016[1]
Updated June 27, 2019

Early life and education

In a video testimony about Wood's conversion to Christianity he has stated that he was an atheist[2] in his youth, and that he had run-ins with the law by breaking into homes and later went as far as smashing his father's head in at the age of 18 in an attempt on his life, claiming a belief that morality was merely societal rules that were beneath him.[8][9][10] He also said that after the assault on his father, Wood was diagnosed with antisocial personality disorder (sociopathy) and was sentenced to ten years in prison for malicious wounding. While in prison, he said, he was confronted with a fellow prisoner named Randy[10] who was a devout Christian. Wood said he often challenged Randy's Christian beliefs, initially claiming that Randy was only a Christian because he was born into a primarily Christian society, specifically the United States.[9] Wood stated he began to read the Bible in order to respond to Randy's rebuttals but it eventually led Wood to convert to Christianity in 1996 himself.[10]

He said that after five years between jail and prison,[9] he was released in 2000 and went to college at Old Dominion University where he earned a bachelor's degree. He later earned a doctorate in philosophy in the philosophy of religion from Fordham University.[11][12][13] While studying at Old Dominion University, he was challenged to convert to Islam by his roommate, Nabeel Qureshi (an Ahmadi), and went about investigating the life of Muhammad using the earliest sources, including Ibn Ishaq's Life of Muhammad (the earliest extant biography of Muhammad); the hadith collections of Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim (considered by Sunni Muslims to be the two most reliable or sahih collections of Muhammad's statements, actions, and example); and the History of the Prophets and Kings by Al-Tabari (one of Islam's greatest historians).[11] Wood's investigation was conducted in translations of various books, as he is not literate in their original tongue, Arabic. Concluding that the Quran and Muhammad's example did not simply describe violence in the past (as in the Christian Bible per his assertion), but rather commanded ongoing violence, he then became a Christian apologist.[11] His roommate Nabeel eventually went on to become a Christian apologist as well.[2]

Christian apologetics

Wood has participated in numerous public debates with Muslims and atheists,[14][15][16] usually in a public hall or in front of a university audience,[17][18][19][20] including debates with Sunni Muslim apologist Mohammed Hijab.[4] Wood was invited on several ABN shows, in inter-religious discussions against atheism and Islam, where among other things he regularly appears on the Aramaic Broadcasting Network.[21] He has produced YouTube videos presenting his views on religion.[22]

Wood opposed the Park51 Islamic Center, arguing that it was not meant to honor the victims' families, but instead was a symbol of Islamic victory and named Cordoba House in memory of the Islamic conquest of Spain by the Umayyad Caliphate which later formed the Caliphate of Córdoba.[23] Wood disagreed with Pastor Terry Jones in the 2010 Qur'an-burning controversy, comparing it to the Uthman Qur'an burning.[24]

Wood was arrested outside Dearborn, Michigan, after preaching at an Arab festival and being charged with a misdemeanor of disturbing the peace, but was later acquitted.[25][26] In May 2013, the City of Dearborn was required to post a public apology[27] to be maintained on the City's website for three years and pay $300,000 to Wood and his three compatriots.[28]

Wood wrote a polemic regarding the work of Richard Carrier which he titled "Good 'n' Senseless Without God: A Critical Review of Richard Carrier's New Book, Sense & Goodness Without God". Richard Carrier responded to the review with an essay entitled "On the Deceptions of David Wood", in which he wrote that Wood misrepresented his arguments and that his review was full of diatribes.[29][30] Wood has also written journals arguing against the views of Dan Barker.[31]

Personal life

He met his wife Marie, then an agnostic while in university; she also became a Christian.[9] They have five sons: Blaise, Luke, Reid, Paley, and Kepler. Two of the five sons, Reid and Paley, suffer Centronuclear myopathy.[11][32]

See also


  1. https://socialblade.com/youtube/user/acts17apologetics/monthly
  2. Dearborn Free Press: "Amazing Grace Amid Profound Controversy" by Jonathan Light August 31, 2010
  3. Degrasse. 21st century Christian debaters (2015) p. XVIII
  4. Chattanooga Times Free Press: "Scholars will debate whether Bible, Quran are books of peace" October 3, 2015 |"These men are recognized for being two of the best in the field of religious apologetics,..."
  5. The American Evangelical Christian/Muslim Debate Series
  6. Conversation between Shadid Lewis and David Wood
  7. Acts 17 Apologetics
  8. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kS8aUSygJM0&t=0s
  9. CBN: "Misguided Man Assaults Father with Hammer" retrieved August 3, 2016
  10. Dagen: "Den umulige snuoperasjonen" by Eivind Algrøy 22 mai 2016 (in Norwegian)
  11. Chattanooga Times Free Press: "Wood: Holy Books of Peace? - Religious scholars will debate whether the Bible and Quran promote peace or violence" by David Wood October 4, 2015
  12. Feldman, Kiera (November 1, 2010). "Killing the Buddha: The anti-Muslim Machine". Killing the Buddha. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  13. David Wood, Blogger profile
  14. Evidence for God: 50 Arguments for Faith from the Bible, History, Philosophy By William A. Dembski, Michael R. Licona
  15. An Open Debate Challenge to Shabir Ally, Jamal Badawi, and Zakir Naik
  16. David Wood, Muslim-responses.com
  17. battle of religions Retrieved 26 January 2011
  18. Rebuttal to David Wood
  19. Big list of Christian Vs. Muslim debates This article contains links to several David Wood video debates
  20. Debates Look At Islam, Christianity Daily Press (Virginia) newspaper
  21. "MUST SEE ISLAMIC TV MINISTRY: Promoting ABN (The Aramaic Broadcasting Network) at ABNsat.com « The Religion of Conquest". Archived from the original on 2011-01-13. Retrieved 2011-01-22.
  22. Mosque plans near Ground Zero Archived 2012-09-07 at Archive.today By Pittsburgh Tribine-Review
  23. Original Quran-Burning Took Place in the Mid-Seventh Century Archived September 19, 2010, at the Wayback Machine CNS News Cybercast News Service
  24. Jury acquits 4 arrested for behavior at Arab fest Associated Press re-print
  25. Dispute in Dearborn Christianity Today magazine
  26. Michigan Live: "Dearborn ordered to apologize for arrests of Christian missionaries at Arab Fest" by Gus Burns May 6, 2013
  27. Christian Post: "Michigan City Paid Evangelists $300,000 in Lawsuit Settlement" by Anugrah Kumar May 25, 2013
  28. Wood, David. "Good 'n' Senseless Without God: A Critical Review of Richard Carrier's new book, Sense & Goodness Without God". AnsweringInfidels.com. Archived from the original on 2006-02-11. Retrieved 2013-10-23.
  29. Richard Carrier. On the Deceptions of David Wood
  30. Defending the Resurrection By Ed James Patrick Holding
  31. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_H8IOTvD63M
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