Matthew Westerholm, Ph.D.



Assistant Professor of Music and Worship

Matthew serves as Assistant Professor of Music and Worship at Bethlehem College & Seminary and as the Pastor for Music and Worship at Bethlehem Baptist Church, downtown campus. Prior to this, he served as a worship pastor at Harvest Bible Chapel in Rolling Meadows, Illinois (1998–2008) and as Dean of the Chapel and director of the worship arts program at Cornerstone University (2008–2013). Matthew’s dissertation examined the eschatological views within contemporary worship music. He has written congregational songs and blog posts on worship for the DesiringGod, Gospel Coalition, and Doxology & Theology websites.

Matthew enjoys Christian Hedonism, classic and modern jazz, comic books, and Chicago sports. He feels comfortable behind a piano, but makes his home in the Phillips neighborhood of Minneapolis with his wife, Lisa, and their three sons.


Academic Credentials

  • B.A., Trinity International University (Church Music)
  • M.A., Grand Rapids Theological Seminary (Systematic Theology)
  • Ph.D., The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Christian Worship)



  • Contributor to A Skeptic’s Guide to Arts in the Church: Ruminations on 20 Reservations. Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, forthcoming.
  • Review of Worship and Mission for the Global Church, edited by James Krabill. Journal of Global Christianity. Forthcoming.
  • Review of You Are What You Love, James K. A. Smith. Themelios 41, no. 3 (2016): 566–68.
  • “‘The Hour is Coming and is Now Here’: The Doctrine of Inaugurated Eschatology in Contemporary Evangelical Worship Music.” PhD diss., The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 2016. (
  • Review of Rhythms of Grace: How the Church’s Worship Tells the Story of the Gospel, Mike Cosper. Themelios 38, no. 3 (November 2013): 524–25.
  • With Joel R. Beeke, “The Puritans on the Lord’s Supper.” In A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life, edited by Joel R. Beeke and Mark Jones, 743–59. Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage Books, 2012;
  • “The ‘Cream of Creation’ and the ‘Cream of Faith’: The Lord’s Supper as a Means of Assurance in Puritan Thought.” Puritan Reformed Journal 3, no. 1 (January 2011): 205–22; (co-written with Joel Beeke).