Eric D. Barreto

Eric Barreto joined Luther Seminary in July 2009. Prior to joining Luther Seminary, Barreto served in Atlanta as an adjunct professor at the Candler School of Theology and McAfee School of Theology. He also gained experience teaching in Sankor, Ghana, through Coast for Christ Ministries. In addition, he worked as a teaching assistant at Candler School of Theology and at Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) in Princeton, N.J.

Barreto was ordained into the Gospel Ministry by Peachtree Baptist Church in Atlanta, in July 2006. He completed a doctorate in New Testament from Emory University in Atlanta and holds a master of divinity from PTS and a bachelor of arts in religion, magna cum laude, from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Okla.

Barreto has received numerous academic honors. His most recent include the George W. Woodruff Fellowship, the Emory Minority Fellowship Grant, and several grants from the Hispanic Theological Initiative and the Fund for Theological Education. He is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) and the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion.


What you should know

Ethnic Negotiations: The Function of

   Race and Ethnicity in Acts 16

   (Mohr Siebeck, 2010)

Revelation, Book of Faith Bible Study Series (Augsburg Fortress, 2012)

Regular contributor at Huffington Post and ON Scripture - The Bible

on my bookshelf


Luther Seminary Profile


Brief Biography

Even as a little boy, Eric Barreto loved school so much that he was upset if heavy rains in his native Puerto Rico prevented attendance. "I would cry those days," he said.

That passion for learning ultimately inspired him to teach others. As a college student teaching English in China, he learned that he finds the "moment of understanding" — when students have learned something new — to be hugely rewarding.

Barreto is pleased to be part of Luther Seminary. "I really like the community of scholars and teachers who are gathered here," he said. "I think that's a relatively rare combination to have in a faculty: people who are both committed to the continuing education of the church and to really excellent classroom education."

A native Spanish speaker, Barreto was immersed in an all-English classroom at age 5. He remembers the challenges of learning a new language. "I think that shapes the way I teach Greek," he said. "I always try to remember when I'm teaching Greek to students that learning a new language as an adult is an incredibly difficult task."

Barreto moved to the United States at age 9 leaving him familiar with a newcomer's experience. Coming from the Baptist tradition, he has often studied and now teaches other traditions. These experiences color his approach to the New Testament. "I try to pay really close attention to modern context and how issues like gender, race, ethnicity and denominational differences make a difference in how we read."

In the classroom, Barreto finds that his students learn best while reading the text together. "My goal isn't to tell them what the text is, or to tell them what Paul's message is or what Jesus' message is in a particular parable. My goal is to ask the right questions, show them the right paths in order that together we can come up with answers to the questions. I'm not a guru of the Bible; I'm a guide."