Following on from my notice of the sad loss of the eminent New Testament scholar J. Louis (Lou) Martyn, the excellent Beverly Gaventa has written a lovely obituary on the SBL website here. It’s well worth reading. To give you a flavour, here are the last couple of paragraphs:
Lou’s life in all its parts reflected Christian commitment that was secure enough not to need publicity. In a statement he prepared for a class on I Corinthians in 1971, he wrote:
I believe that God is first and that his being first “makes all the difference.” It means that he is there before I think of him and that he is the one who speaks life and thought and hope into existence. He stands at the base of every arrow which points to life; and his doing that is a large part of my understanding of what life is. That is to say, because God is first, I know that life is a gift from him.
For Lou’s students, indeed for all who study the New Testament, Lou Martyn himself was a gift.
Amen to that indeed!