John Sailhamer’s book collection has arrived at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. This book collection reflects a lifetime of travel and acquisition attributed to the former Southeastern Old Testament professor and scholar.
“Bringing the John Sailhamer library to Southeastern allows us to honor a premiere Old Testament scholar whose contribution to evangelical scholarship is significant,” said Daniel Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. “Our school was graced to have him on this faculty for a number of years and this gift from the Sailhamer family will continue the legacy of a wonderful man of God.”
Sailhamer’s degrees in language and Old Testament Studies are a B.A. from State University at Long Beach; M.A. at University of California, Los Angeles; Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary; and Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles. Sailhamer’s teaching career includes service at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Brea, Calif.; Trinity Divinity Evangelical Seminary in Chicago, Ill.; Bethel College and Seminary in St. Paul, Minn.; Biola University in La Mirada, Calif.; Northwestern College in St. Paul, Minn.; Western Conservative Baptist Theological Seminary in Portland, Ore.; and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC.
Sailhamer served as professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Southeastern from 1999-2006.
“Dr. John Sailhamer has been a major scholastic force in the evangelical community for a very long time,” said Shawn Madden, associate professor of Old Testament and Hebrew and director of library services at Southeastern. “Dr. Sailhamer had a great concern and interest in the scholastic responsibilities of the evangelical community, imbuing in his students an intentional devotion to God’s Word and its proper understanding, interpretation and teaching.”
Sailhamer’s book collection, which arrived the last week of April, will be housed in a specially constructed room on the second floor of Denny Library in the scholar’s name. The collection is comprised of Old Testament studies and language studies in Hebrew, Greek, Latin, German, French, as well as other languages. These works cover a wide gamut of fields such as theological studies, reference works, philosophical studies, cultural studies, historical studies, monographs, syntaxical studies, exegetical studies, grammars, commentaries, textual studies, dictionaries, theses, dissertations, facsimiles, archaeological studies and New Testament studies.
“Dr. Sailhamer’s linguistic thinking and work,” Madden said, “is best reflected in the dissertations and writings of his students who have carried away from his classes a deep devotion to the proper understanding of inter- and intra-textual relationships found in the Bible.”
Sailhamer has taught and influenced hundreds of students, including Benjamin Quinn, who is currently an instructor of theology and history of ideas at Southeastern.
“Dr. Sailhamer was one of the best teachers I ever had the privilege of sitting under,” Quinn said. “The truth is, however, that he was light years ahead in his understanding of Scripture and his insight into the original text. Dr. Sailhamer was humble, gracious and brilliant in the classroom. In 25 years of formal education, I cannot recall any other class where I learned so much.”
Sailhamer has most recently taught at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary but due to health issues has not been in the classroom.
The John Sailhamer Library will open this fall.