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First of all, I want to thank Justin for the privilege of being a guest blogger on the famous “Between Two World’s” blog. You will be missed this week my friend. We are all praying that you have a thoroughly enjoyable vacation with your family. Secondly, if I don’t give at least a brief explanation of my tedious, scarring name, I’m afraid anything I might post this week will be radically overshadowed by the readers preoccupation with trying to pronounce my name. So here it is. My full name (get this) is William Graham Tullian Tchividjian. Phew! It’s a name that is actually packed with meaning. Let me explain.

The “William Graham” is after my grandfather, Billy Graham. The “Tullian” is after the early church father Tertullian. My mom was taking a church history class while she was pregnant with me and was most captivated with Tertullian and his unwavering committment to expounding and defending God’s truth. She prayed, “Lord, if this child happens to be a boy, please make him an ardent defender of your truth like Tertullian was.” And lo and behold, out I came, July 13, 1972–a boy! Rumor has it that for the first day or so my name was the full “Tertullian.” Thankfully my mom came to her senses and dropped the “Ter.” Can you imagine if my name were Tertullian Tchividjian? I mean seriously! Moving on.

My last name is pronounced “cha-vi-jin.” It rhymes with religion (that usually helps people). It’s an Armenian name. Not “Arminian”, but “Armenian.” Armenia is a country that borders Turkey. Arminius was a man. In fact, in seminary I was known as the Armenian Calvinist. Oh well! My dad is half Armenian, half Swiss. My mom was born and raised in Western North Carolina. I’m a Florida native!

So there you have it. It’s not that bad, now is it? Amazingly, given the names of the men I have to live up to, I’m still sane. Anyway, I look forward to posting over the next week or so with my fellow “guest bloggers.” Take it away guys…

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12 thoughts on “Tullian Who??”

  1. Bryan C. McWhite says:

    Sweet name. Looking forward to your thoughts, Tullian.

  2. familydale says:

    What a riot! And what a great story behind your name. I think as parents we are often far too flippant (and not very prayerful) in the names we choose for our children.

  3. Pastor Erik says:

    You failed to mention that you were one of only a handful of metrosexual reformed pastors (not reformed metrosexual- which is something different). This term might seems derogatory, but I mean it as a compliment. To be metrosexual amongst the mass of reformed dorks circulating about may simply refer to the ability to match one’s shirt with one’s socks, and know the difference between cordovan and brown.

    Nonetheless, you’re a handsome devil and I mean that in the most metrosexual, heterosexual, way possible.

  4. el gordo says:

    weren’t you also a “guest dogger” this last season on Dog: Bounty Hunter? That was a cool thing you did with that guy with the thing.

  5. Robert N. Landrum says:

    I like the fact that you were named after someone great. I got a little carried away naming my children–Samuel Hadden, Nathanael Owen, Joshua Knox, and Hannah Elizabeth.

  6. TIm says:

    Great to ‘meet’ you! Thanks for sharing with us on the blog, looking forward to you posts.

  7. Bryce says:


    maybe i’m just from a cool town, evansville, indiana…(its like kentucky’s hat) but every reformed guy i know is metro.

  8. Pastor Erik says:

    It must be that you’re from Indiana. All I can say is, I’m sorry.

    Just kidding. Good to meet you. Great blog.


  9. Philip says:

    Love the name….now if only Tertullian remained within the orthodox faith and did not defect to the Montanist heresy in the end. If only!

    God bless,


  10. Tullian Tchividjian says:


    Yea, Tertullian didn’t exactly finish well, did he? Let’s hope I’ll fare better.

    But, as my systematic theology professor at RTS, Doug Kelly, once said when we were studying the early church fathers, “We have to cut these guys some slack because they were pioneers. They didn’t have the benefit we do of centuries of fine tuning as a result of theological debate and council’s. They got the ball rolling.”

    I dare say, my boy Tertullian did more good than harm.

  11. Philip says:

    Mr. Tchividjian,

    Yes indeed; we are so blessed with a much deeper understanding of so many doctrines thanks to great men like Tertullian.

    Though I find myself not able to sympathize too strongly with his later heresy. It was not as though these great Church Fathers were standing alone with a text: they had a firm understanding and unifying sense of the Traditions of the Apostles (their writings are teeming with references not only the Scripture but to their office and the Apostolic Traditions which were passed on to them) which in turn interpret the Scriptures (that way we avoid the traditions of men). With the Apostolic voice so deafeningly clear in the consensus of the early Bishops, Tertullian’s defection was more akin to abandoning Christ altogether than a respectable academic decision to convert to Montanism. Yet I must agree with you that his contributions to the development and clarificaiton of the doctrine of the Blessed Trinity cannot be measured.

    Alas, how thankful we should be that the Word of God has been so faithfully preserved throughout the ages, and that no one man has the ability to cause Christendom to depart from it.

    Blessings to you,


  12. jazzmanerism says:

    You should look to your Armenian roots for the truth about Christ. The Armenian Orthodox Church is a 1700 year old insitution that is descended directly from the apostles.

    Also, “cha-vij-in” (Չավիճեան)is not the proper pronounciation of your last name – that’s the Americanized/Anglicized way of saying it. The proper Armenian way of saying it is “Chuh-veedj-yan“.

    In faith,
    T. Aznavourian

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Tullian Tchividjian serves as the Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Tullian is author of the forthcoming, "Surprised by Grace: God's Relentless Pursuit of Rebels" (Crossway: May 31, 2010).