Rod Decker (1952-2014) -- By: Kevin Mungons
JMAT 18:2 (Fall 2014) p. 5
Rod Decker (1952-2014)
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Rod Decker1 was strong enough to finish two books and send them to the printer last winter—strong enough to write the introductions, strong enough to sign them the way he signed the others:
Soli Deo Gloria
With a sharp mind trapped inside a body that was slowly shutting down, Rod suffered through the roughest winter of his life. Unable to return to his classes at Baptist Bible Seminary, he invested his remaining energy writing at home, confined to a chair by the fire, warmed by wood he had chopped ahead of time. He was ready for what he called the “inescapable reality” of death.
“I’ve been ‘terminal’ for over 60 years,” he said with typical humor and theological precision.
Eight years earlier he had built his house across the road from the farm where he grew up. Despite his growing reputation as a NT Greek scholar, he never strayed too far from his rural roots.
“God took a farm boy and placed him in the ministry, eventually into graduate studies, and then into the classroom to train young pastors,” Rod had said, summarizing his life as “grace from the beginning.”
JMAT 18:2 (Fall 2014) p. 6
Rod Decker, author, seminary professor, and an internationally known NT scholar, died on May 25,
“He always cared about others more than himself, always deflected praise, and always gave God glory,” says Mark McGinniss, a faculty colleague who had seen the soli Deo gloria in action.
Rod grew up on a farm near Tunkhannock, PA, the son of Pastor Victor and Agnes Decker. His father, a
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