Jon Denney – Senior Pastor

Jon Denney has served as the Senior Pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church since 2013. His ministry is grounded in a two-fold commitment: expository preaching that explains the text of Scripture, and practical ministry that depends on the sufficiency of Scripture.

Jon has served in pastoral ministry since 1993. He also served for six years at City Union Mission. Before entering the ministry, he was an EMT and served as a medic in the Army National Guard.

Jon’s training has included a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min) in Expository Preaching from The Master’s Seminary, a Master of Divinity (M.Div) from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Certification as a Biblical Counselor from the International Association of Biblical Counselors.

Jon and his wife, Sharon were married in 1992 and they have two children: Stephen and Rachel. Their great joy in life is being able to serve the Lord together.

A Brief Testimony from Jon

My life was forever changed in 1991 when I read a book titled The Seduction of Christianity. I thought that the title implied that it was mocking Christianity as a seducing influence on the gullible. However, it was not what I expected. I quickly realized that it was confronting gullible Christians who were being seduced by ideas that contradicted what Jesus had taught. Nevertheless, I was pulled in by the subject matter, because the contradictory ideas that were seducing Christians, were ideas that I had embraced myself–ideas that are commonly labelled as “New Age.” As I began reading, I soon found myself being challenged by some simple, yet profound questions that I had never asked myself before: How do I know that the things I believe are actually true? Have I believed things simply because I want to believe them? Have I listened only to those who tell me what I want to hear? Then, as I considered the answers to those questions, I was startled to realize that I had no basis for the things I believed; I simply believed them because I wanted to believe them. My beliefs allowed me to live as I pleased. For the first time in my life, I started to see that I only listened to those who reinforced, and did not challenge, my comfortable views. It then began to dawn on me that I was not going to be able to continue going through life as if these realizations had not happened. To do so would be to live in fantasy, rather than reality. All of these thoughts were occurring as I was continuing to read the book, which then began to explain what biblical Christianity is. And the more that I read, the more I became persuaded that what I was reading was true. Just as it had revealed the state of my own heart, it began to reveal the heart of God–that He is loving and merciful. There is hope for forgiveness for “sin,” which was a term that I had often heard of, but had never understood. Sin is rebellion against God, which happens when a choice is made with no consideration of God and whether the choice is good and right in His eyes. The main (and usually only) consideration is how my choices effect me. Sin bears the penalty of death. This is why God sent Jesus, His Son, into the world: Jesus’ death paid the penalty for sin and is available for everyone who will turn from sin and believe in Him. Before I could finish reading the book, I became convinced of my need for God’s forgiveness and I placed my faith in Jesus Christ. Since that day in 1991, my desire has been to share what I received with anyone who will listen.