Published on December 17, 2015 by Kristen Padilla  
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Ian Howard Marshall, professor emeritus of New Testament at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, died December 12. He was 81.

Marshall was a friend of Beeson Divinity School having once taught a class during a January term. He was a respected scholar, prolific author, and dedicated Christian.

The following are small tributes offered by several Beeson faculty members who knew Marshall and benefited from his scholarship.

Timothy George

Dean and Professor of Divinity

I remember with gratitude Howard Marshall's teaching at Beeson as a visiting professor as well as other occasions when we labored together on behalf of the Gospel. He was a Christian scholar without peer in the academy, and his life and work made luminous both parts of that designation.

Osvaldo Padilla

Associate Professor of New Testament

Howard Marshall will be missed. This was a man of great erudition and intellectual capacity. Yet, I remember being struck as a student at Aberdeen when I saw the genuine humility of this man, who always asked you to call him Howard, not Professor Marshall. His observations and suggestions during student presentations in New Testament seminars at Aberdeen-often given privately to the student after the seminar was finished-were given with unusual modesty and gentleness. This does not mean that he had low standards of scholarship. On the contrary, he insisted on the highest levels of scholarship, being quite direct about it when necessary. Yet he did it with the gentleness of Jesus Christ, who he embodied so well.

Howard leaves a great legacy to evangelical scholars. He was a devoted man to his Methodist denomination, doing continuous preaching for its churches (and other denominations) in the northeast of Scotland. His scholarship was honest, always demanding that one not caricature those we disagree with. He was generous with his time, willing to read a chapter of your PhD thesis even if he was not your supervisor; then meeting with you to talk about it at length, as if he did not have numerous other projects to attend to! All the while he exuded deep devotion to Jesus Christ. Thanks be to God for Howard's life!

Frank Thielman

Professor of New Testament

Ian Howard Marshall was a giant in the field of New Testament scholarship and a gentle but demanding teacher. His scholarly writings, which were without exception meticulously researched and carefully written, will remain important contributions to the field for many years to come. In addition, he has left behind many Christian friends who will miss his sound scholarship and the example of his deep commitment to Christ.

Paul House

Professor of Old Testament

Howard Marshall provided scholarly resources to a whole generation of young evangelicals seeking to integrate robust academic research and deep Christian faith. He was a mentor to a steady stream of American doctoral students willing to brave Aberdeen winters to gain a good education. Marshall was a kind, soft-spoken man who could speak the truth in love. He endured his wife's passing with strength, thus showing his Christian character. His good books and students carry his ministry forward.

Gerald Bray

Research Professor of Divinity

Howard's death, one month short of his 82nd birthday, marks the end of an era in British Evangelical scholarship. Howard was a disciple of the late F. F. Bruce and represented his legacy in New Testament scholarship. It is also one of the main reasons why he was always closely associated with Tyndale House in Cambridge and the different Evangelical organisations associated with it. He was dedicated to their work and generous with his time and money, making it possible for generations of students to gain higher degrees in Biblical studies.

I worked closely with him for a long time, both in the Tyndale Fellowship and in the Fellowship of European Evangelical Theologians (FEET) of which he was president when I was secretary. He was always very businesslike but had a good sense of humour which got us through a number of potentially difficult situations.

Howard was known as a Scottish Methodist, but he was actually English by birth, which may explain his Methodism, which is not strong in Scotland. He was a devoted churchman and always insisted that prayer and worship should form an important part of our conferences. This made him a living example of how high academic standards and genuine Evangelical faith could (and should) go hand in hand. After the sudden death of his first wife he set an example of someone who carried on as she would have wished, and even after his retirement in 1999 he remained active in both university and church affairs.

Howard was a faithful supporter of Evangelical activities up to the very end, and there are many, including myself, who will miss him in the days ahead.