Jeff and Averil Coleman have been married 10 years and have 5 young children. They live in Timaru, New Zealand, and plan to move at end of 2018 to Dunedin, New Zealand. Jeff is from Salina, Kansas, and Averil is from Timaru. Together they run Firm Foundation New Zealand, an evangelical Christian ministry focused on conversational evangelism, inductive Bible study, expository Bible teaching, and biblical worldview training.
Jeff earned a B.A. in English from the University of Kansas in 2000, a J.D. from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2005, and a Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary in 2016. He is licensed to practice law in the State of Colorado and has served 10 years in the United States Air Force as a judge advocate attorney.
Averil earned a B.A. in Education from the University of Canterbury in 1999 and served 5 years as a teacher at an orphanage in Chiang Mai, Thailand, where she and Jeff met. In addition to her ministry with Firm Foundation New Zealand, Averil enjoys being a homeschool mum to she and Jeff's five young children.
Our Focus Areas
- We share the gospel in a conversational way at public locations in South Canterbury and Otago.
- We train believers how to share the gospel through seminars and workshops.
- We assist local churches in conducting evangelism campaigns in their own communities.
Inductive Bible Study
- We lead weekly inductive Bible studies through every book of the Bible, both in-person and online.
- We conduct five-day Bible schools for youth every school holiday.
- We train leaders and facilitators so that inductive Bible study may spread throughout churches on the South Island.
Expository Bible Teaching
- We preach and teach from the Old and New Testaments during Sunday and other services at evangelical churches throughout the South Island.
- We conduct seminars and workshops on books of the Bible and areas of theology.
- We serve as guest speakers at camps, conferences, and retreats.
Biblical Worldview Training
- We run biblical worldview and apologetic talks in Timaru and Dunedin, defending the biblical worldview in the public square of New Zealand.
- We train believers, especially young believers, how to think biblically in all areas of life through seminars and workshops.
- We hope to run a biblical worldview academy once we get established in Dunedin.
Our Doctrinal Statement
The Trinity. God exists eternally in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Mt 28:19; 2 Co 13:14; Re 1:4-6). The three persons are one God, not three (Dt 6:4; Mk 12:29; 1 Co 8:4-6). The persons of the Trinity are co-equal and co-eternal and are worthy of the same confidence, obedience, and worship (Jn 1:14; Heb 1:1-3, 8; Php 2:10-11). The Trinity exists in a category of its own and is totally distinct from the universe and all its creatures. No creature can or ever will be God. This truth is known as the Creator-creature distinction (Dt 4:39, Ac 17:24-29, Re 4:8-11).
The Attributes of God. The persons of the Trinity, individually and collectively, possess the following attributes to an infinite degree: (1) holiness (Le 11:44-45; Is 6:1-3; Re 15:4); (2) sovereignty (1 Ch 29:10-12; Da 4:34-35; 1 Ti 6:15-16); (3) righteousness (Dt 32:4; Ps 11:7; 1 Jn 1:5); (4) justice (Dt 32:4; Jer 9:24; Mt 12:18-21); (5) love (Ex 34:6-7, Ro 8:35-39, 1 Jn 4:7-12); (6) eternity (Dt 33:27; Ps 90:1-4; Re 1:8); (7) omnipresence (2 Ch 16:9; Ps 139:1-18; Ac 17:24-28); (8) omniscience (Is 55:8-9; Ro 11:33-36; Col 2:2-3); (9) omnipotence (Ge 18:14, Jer 32:17, Lk 1:37); (10) immutability (Ps 102:25-27, Jon 4:2; Jas 1:17); and (11) truth (Ps 119:151, Jn 3:33, 1 Jn 5:20). Additional attributes could be named.
Our Advisory Board
Dr. David Bochman, Montana
Matt Cameron, Timaru
Matt serves in a local Timaru church as a youth leader, preacher, and piano player. He is a born and bred New Zealander from Morrinsville. He has received training in electrical engineering, Bible and theology, education, and counseling. He currently has several part-time jobs--teacher, counsellor, tennis referee--but his ministry passion is education and discipleship. He advises us in the areas of evangelism, Bible teaching, and understanding of Kiwi culture. Matt and his wife Rachel live in Timaru with their two teenage boys.
Bruce Fraser, Christchurch
Bruce is the Christchurch Director for Thinking Matters New Zealand, a ministry that trains Christians to defend the faith with gentleness and respect. Bruce is from Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA, and has lived in New Zealand since 2011. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Physics and currently works as a Software Architect and Process Improvement consultant. His ministry passion is outreach, apologetics, and planting new churches. As our advisory board member, he counsels us in the areas of conversational evangelism and biblical worldview training. Bruce and his wife Lee and their two boys Liam and Julian live in Christchurch.
Barbara Kipfer, Auckland
Barbara is the national coordinator of Precept Ministries New Zealand, a Christian ministry dedicated to helping believers study the Bible inductively. Barbara is originally from Switzerland and has lived in New Zealand since the late 1990s. A trained secondary school teacher, her passion is to see people changed from the inside out as they study and understand God’s word. One area she sees that happen is inside prisons where she leads and is part of a team using workbooks published by Precept Ministries International. As an advisory board member of our ministry, she provides expertise in the area of inductive Bible study.
Jason Winslade, Christchurch
Jason lives in Darfield, New Zealand, with his wife, Claret, and their six children. He left a corporate career in 2009 to give his time more fully to serving the body of Christ as a pastor-elder at Redemption Church. Jason is passionate about seeing the local church built up through embracing the sufficiency of scripture, biblically-qualified leadership, expository bible teaching, along with biblically-functioning homes that thrive as hubs for both discipleship and evangelism. He provides advice to our ministry in the areas of conversation evangelism, expository Bible teaching, and administration.
Nathan Jordan, Texas
“God is really using you in powerful ways to do what I believe are exactly the most important things that we as Christians can be doing in the world of today. I am thankful to see how you are using your education, and more importantly, how you are cooperating with the empowering Holy Spirit in the world that God has prepared for you to be doing there in New Zealand."
David Bruce, Timaru
“What a wonderful asset you are to the Christian community and the whole of Timaru people—young and older. Your efforts, energy, and desire to serve the Lord is so encouraging to us—and I am sure to many.”