on the occasion of Ralph P. Martin’s birthday

Ralph Martin is my doktorvater, the teacher who guided my study and research as I pursued my doctoral studies at Fuller Seminary. That, however, is not likely to be something that appears in his memoirs, should he write them, or his list of accomplishments when his influence on biblical studies is tallied.

Dr. Martin attracted me as a teacher because of his obvious commitment to the life of the church through his study and writings on the New Testament. His academic career was never isolated from church ministry, including serving as a pastor or teacher in the churches where he lived, both in England and in the United States.

His exegesis and exposition of Scripture is consistently thorough and exacting, but not because he viewed it as an academic exercise. It matters to God’s people to understand God’s word well. That’s a commitment I strive to bring to my own study and teaching, and for such a valuable lesson I am very grateful on his birthday.

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