Noted New Testament scholar and theologian Gordon Fee has died at the age of 88.
He died on Tuesday, October 25, at his home in New York City.
Fee was born in Ashland, Oregon, in 1934 to a Pentecostal preacher, Donald Horace Fee, and Gracy Irene Jacobson. He would become an ordained minister in the Pentecostal denomination, Assemblies of God. After a few teaching stints at Christian universities in the USA, he and his wife, Maudine, moved to Vancouver where he taught at Regent College for 16 years. Fee was named Professor Emeritus of New Testament at Regent.
He was well known for his many writings, including several New Testament commentaries. He was also considered an expert in Pneumatology (the study of the Holy Spirit) and textual criticism of the New Testament. Among his notable works includes the book, How To Read The Bible For All Its Worth. That book has 2,000 reviews on Amazon with 75 per cent of them being five-star reviews. The book opens up New Testament interpretation to the average person, discussing topics such as genre, exegesis, and hermeneutics.
"He was a treasured colleague, teacher, friend, and pastor to many."
Fee served as the general editor of the New International Commentary series until 2012, and was on the NIV revision committee that produced the Today's New International Version translation of the Bible.
"Besides his ability as a biblical scholar, he is a noted teacher and conference speaker," Regent College says on their faculty page for Fee.
"He has given the Staley Distinguished Christian Scholar lectures on fifteen college campuses as well as the annual NT lectures at Southwestern Baptist Seminary, North Park Seminary, the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary, the Canadian Theological Seminary, Duke Divinity School, Golden Gate Baptist, Anderson School of Theology, Asbury Seminary, and Chrichton College. An ordained minister with the Assemblies of God, Gordon Fee is well known for his manifest concern for the renewal of the church."
"This passion for Christ and for accurate understanding and communication of the Scripture marked all his service for the Lord.”
In a tribute to Fee on its website, Regent College called him "a treasured colleague, teacher, friend, and pastor to many."
Regent quotes another noted theologian, Dr. Douglas Moo, who worked closely with Fee on many issues, as saying, "Gordon Fee had an enormous influence on many aspects of biblical scholarship and the Christian life. Perhaps one of the least known, however, is his over thirty years of work on the Committee on Bible Translation, the team of scholars responsible for the New International Version of the Bible. Readers of that Bible, the widest read of all modern English Bibles, will encounter his translation suggestions on almost every page.
“If I might speak more personally, I have fond memories of Gordon announcing, about an issue we were debating, ‘I have no passion for this’—only to go on to argue passionately about the matter! This passion for Christ and for accurate understanding and communication of the Scripture marked all his service for the Lord.”
Regent's tribute also recounts a story from Pastor John Crosby, a student of Gordon’s at Wheaton and Gordon-Conwell. "(He) remembers his first day of New Testament Literature when Gordon boldly jumped up on the desk at the front of the class and announced, 'This is not a class on New Testament! This is a class on immortality! Some day you will hear "Fee is dead." Do not believe it! He is singing with his Lord and his King!' ”
Gordon then led the class in singing “O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing.”
His wife, Maureen, passed away in 2014. They have four adult children together, thirteen grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren (with two more on the way).