theologian and scholar of Martin Luther
James Atkinson, who died at age 97, was one of the most colorful displays, depth warm, dedicated and spiritual Martin Luther and biblical theology of the Reformation. Many of his most characteristic habits and gestures called to the spirit of Luther, whose views he shared love of writing and learning from the heat, the passion for truth, a refusal to compromise a system that could sometimes be devastating, especially a commitment to live the evangelical maxim, "You have received, freely give."
over the years, James had many distinguished appointments, including the positions of professor of biblical studies at the University of Sheffield (1967-1979) and founding director of the Center for the study of the Reformation (1983-2006). Luther was a professor of biblical studies, and considered the study of the Bible as the source of his vision of truth and life. James describes his own appointment as professor of Sheffield as "the most beautiful moment of my life."
Martin Luther: Prophet of the Catholic Church (1983), argued that Luther would have relied heavily on the Second Vatican Council - Council from 1962 to reconsider the relations between the Church and the rest the world - his message was one of the reform of the Church from within, not to start something new. He has always strongly recommended that the reformists maintain the utmost respect for the ancient patristic tradition and believed in the importance of respect for authority. Luther said that the disappointment suffered no less than "left exalted" or "radical reformers" in the reform of the inflexibility of the Pope.
James was born in Northumberland, and studied at the school and Tynemouth College St. John's, Durham. Ordained in 1938, and during the Second World War he served as cantor of the Cathedral of Sheffield, and as vicar of St. Jacques, in Sheffield. Working under the supervision of Michael (later Archbishop) of Ramsey for his MLitt Durham, found a special relationship with the work of early Christian scholar Origen in the Gospel of John. In 1951, he became the first Sir Henry Stephenson colleagues at the University of Sheffield, where he started working for Luther that ultimately lead to the production DTheol magna cum laude from the University of Münster.
James had full participation in the life of the church. He was a theologian, a canon of the Cathedral of Leicester (1954-1970) and Sheffield Cathedral (1971-1993). Participated in the talks Catholic Anglican / Roman in Rome, represented universities in the North during the General Synod of the Church of England, and was president of the Society for the study of theology after his retirement from Sheffield in 1979. He continued to work tirelessly, with great energy in evening classes and tours in Germany of Luther. From 1994 to 2002, he served as professor of theology of the Reformation, especially at the University of Nottingham.
Despite his election to the synod, James did not like politics and the Church of the bombast that sometimes went to church function. He told many anecdotes about bishops who seemed to care more about purple socks on God, and gave a presentation to the Synod on the incisive words of Jesus on the revelation of truth, "children", and retained the source of the truth of those who pose as "wise."
James was loved and respected by his colleagues and students. He lived his passionate belief in the truth of the gospel, and a deep concern for others that entails. In 1994, his colleagues gave him a pot-Law The Bible, the Reformation and the Church, edited by Peter Stephens. Until the last, James struggled with impending blindness, continuing to study and write. From beginning to end, was a man of integrity, warmth and sincerity.
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