Joel became a Christian at the age of seven after his father, a pastor, shared the Gospel with him. Ever since, he has been interested in apologetics and the defense of the faith, and in particular how evolution affects Christian theology.
In 2001, He graduated with a Diploma in Biotechnology (equivalent to a 3 year Associate Degree) from Ngee Ann Polytechnic (Singapore) with an emphasis on the commercial viability of rooftop hydroponics in Singapore. During his studies, he also completed a student internship with the Pediatrics Cytogenetics laboratory at the National University Hospital. He was also very active with his church’s youth ministry as well as Cru (formerly known as Campus Crusade for Christ). It was around this time that Joel first attended a CMI talk by Dr. Carl Wieland of CMI and was blown away to hear, for the first time, answers to some of his nagging questions about creation and evolution. This ignited a passion to share the Gospel using creation apologetics.
In 2008, Joel completed a Bachelor of Science from the University of Queensland (Australia), majoring in two fields of studies: Evolutionary Biology and Genetics, with the sole purpose of increasing his own apologetics arsenal to the non-believer. He was also actively involved with Campus Christian Movement, as well as an open air preaching ministry (Operation 513). Joel volunteered as an active Support Group volunteer with CMI from 2004–2008 where he attended some 150 plus talks from well-established creation speakers.
Due to his street evangelism ministry Joel has serious ‘street cred!’ As he would often say, “There were two questions that would be raised every single week as objections against the Christian faith. 1) Creation vs. Evolution. 2) If God is good, how can there be so much evil in the world?” Answering both questions requires going back to the biblical foundation of Genesis. Joel has a desire to see Christians equipped and strengthened in their faith by showing them how the scientific evidence makes more sense when correctly interpreted through a biblical lens.
In 2011, Joel obtained a Master of Divinity (Theology) from Trinity Theological College in Singapore. During this period, he also interned with Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (Singapore), pastored a Youth Ministry at Sembawang Presbyterian Church, and completed a 1.5 year internship with Redemption Hill Church. Upon graduation, he was employed by Redemption Hill Church where he was largely responsible for researching and writing articles for an apologetics website/project, writing commentary and devotional guides, exegetical research, and teaching.
In 2014, Joel moved to Fort Worth, Texas, USA. He graduated in 2016 with a Master of Theology in Systematic Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, with an emphasis on philosophical theology especially as it relates to the subject of Christian Theodicy.
Joel is now part of CMI’s team of specialists where he speaks, researches and writes on science/theology/creation based subjects. In his spare time he is an avid fossil collector and loves entertaining children. He is a previous winner of Singapore’s largest street illusionist competition. Currently, Joel and his American wife have one young daughter.