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Aug. 22, 2008

For Immediate Release



By Joan C. McKinney, news and publications coordinator

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Campbellsville University professor, Dr. Jarvis J. Williams, has had a book proposal, “The Cross and Racial Reconciliation in Paul’s Theology,” accepted for publication by Broadman & Holman Academic Press.

Williams, assistant professor of New Testament and Greek in CU’s School of Theology, said the book will be grounded in biblical exegesis. Its thesis is that sin is the fundamental reason why humans need to be reconciled first to God and secondly to one another and that Jesus’ vicarious death for sin is foundational to Paul’s theology of racial reconciliation. 

Williams said his book’s due date is June 1, 2009; it is scheduled to be released June 1, 2010.

“We are very pleased that Dr. Jarvis Williams is writing this important book on reconciliation in Christ,” said Dr. Michael V. Carter, president of Campbellsville University.

“The gospel of Jesus Christ brings people together across lines of race, ethnicity and other barriers that have separated us.  Dr. Williams’ work in this area is very important,” Carter said.

Dr. John Hurtgen, dean of the CU School of Theology, said, “Dr. Jarvis Williams is a rising Baptist New Testament scholar.  In the book he carefully ties together what for too many Christians has became untied, namely, the cross of Jesus and the message of racial reconciliation.     

“Dr. Williams gives a clarion call for the church to hear anew Paul’s words about what God has accomplished in the cross of Christ:  ‘You are all one in Christ Jesus’ (Gal. 3:28).”

Williams said he thinks that the various cultural and sociological contexts in which Christians currently live unfortunately inform the way in which they view race and race relations instead of the biblical text. 

“I hope this book will give Christians a biblical worldview of race and race relations and that it would enable them to see that everyone (regardless of race) is on the same spiritual platform before God, for they are alienated from God (and secondarily from one another) because of sin, but Jesus’ vicarious death for sin can reconcile them by faith first to God and secondly to one another according to Paul the Apostle,” Williams said.

Williams, who is 30, started teaching at Campbellsville University as an adjunct professor of New Testament Study when he was 28.  He also serves as a visiting professor of New Testament Interpretation at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and has been invited to serve as a guest lecturer at other academic institutions of higher learning. 

He holds a bachelor of science in biblical studies (2000), a master of divinity in biblical and theological studies (2003), a master of theology in New Testament Greek Exegesis (2004), and a doctor of philosophy (2007) in New Testament with emphases in New Testament Theology, New Testament Greek and Old Testament Hebrew from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. 

Williams’ research interests pertain to issues related to Pauline theology, especially atonement and justification.  He has already published a scholarly article and a book review on the atonement in the Princeton Theological Review’s December 2007 edition on atonement. 

He is writing other scholarly articles and book proposals to be considered for publication by respected journals and publishers.  His 2007 dissertation “Maccabean Martyr Traditions in Paul’s Theology of Atonement” is currently being peer-reviewed for publication.

Williams is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society of Biblical Literature.

Williams is married to Ana Elba Williams, and they have an infant son, Jaden Alexander Williams. He and his family live in Louisville, where they are members of Clifton Baptist Church. 

Campbellsville University is a private, comprehensive institution located in South Central Kentucky. Founded in 1906, Campbellsville University is affiliated with the Kentucky Baptist Convention and has an enrollment of 2,405 students who represent 98 Kentucky counties, 25 states and 36 foreign nations. Listed in U.S.News & World Report’s 2009 “America’s Best Colleges,” CU is ranked 22nd in “Best Baccalaureate Colleges” in the South for the second consecutive year. CU has been ranked 16 consecutive years with U.S.News & World Report. The university has also been named to America’s Best Christian Colleges®. Campbellsville University is located 82 miles southwest of Lexington, Ky., and 80 miles southeast of Louisville, Ky. Dr. Michael V. Carter is in his tenth year as president.