1 December, 2022

Longtime Seminary Professor Robert Hull Dies (Plus News Briefs)

by | 19 January, 2022 | 1 comment

Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan reported via Facebook that longtime professor of Greek and New Testament Dr. Robert F. Hull Jr. died on Saturday. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. followed by a 3 p.m. funeral service Sunday at Grandview Christian Church in Johnson City, Tenn.


According to information from one of the many articles he wrote for Christian Standard, Hull was born in Welch, W. Va., the son of a coal miner and lay preacher. In 1965, Hull graduated from Milligan College and joined the first entering class at Emmanuel School of Religion in Johnson City, Tenn., where he earned an MDiv in 1971. Hull went on to study with Bruce M. Metzger at Princeton Theological Seminary, where he finished his PhD in 1977. Hull also served as minister with the Loyall (Ky.) Church of Christ, 1964-71, and as minister of youth and education with Mountain Christian Church, Joppa, Md., 1972-77.

After earning his doctorate, Hull taught full-time at Emmanuel until retirement in 2010. 

Hull married his former Milligan classmate, Loretta (Pennington), 57 years ago; she survives, along with their three children and several grandchildren.

A complete obituary is posted here.

In 2014, Hull told Christian Standard the best advice he ever received was “Don’t get above your raising” (akin to “Don’t get too big for your britches” and “Remember where you came from”)—that advice came from his mother and many others as he was leaving the hills of West Virginia for college.

“These are reminders that education and social position don’t make me better than the person who bags my groceries,” Hull wrote. “I didn’t go off and ‘become somebody’; I was already ‘somebody’ in the eyes of God when I bagged groceries at my first job. ‘I, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet’ (John 13:14).”

We will share Hull’s article “My Theology and My Approach to Aging” (from 2016) for tomorrow’s “Throwback Thursday” feature, plus provide links to several other essays he penned through the years.

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News Briefs

It appears almost all of the 20-plus Christian colleges and universities supported by our fellowship of churches are pressing on with in-person instruction during the spring semester, despite surging cases of COVID-19 largely attributable to the virus’s Omicron variant. A survey of college websites and Facebook pages indicates colleges are resuming on-campus instruction this month as planned.

Alberta Bible College in Canada seems to be the only outlier, with all classes switched to fully online through Jan. 31. 

Other colleges providing spring semester COVID-19 updates were Johnson University (Knoxville, Tenn., and Kissimmee, Fla.), Manhattan Christian College (Kansas), Ozark Christian College (Joplin, Mo.), and St. Louis Christian College (Florissant, Mo.).

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Ability Ministry CEO Ryan Wolfe was featured in the “Five Questions with” weekly feature in the Canton Repository on Sunday. Wolfe grew up in Canton, Ohio, and now lives in North Canton; he worked with First Christian Church from 2002 to 2017, serving as full-time disability ministry pastor for many years. Wolfe transitioned to his role with Ability Ministry (formerly Christian Churches Foundation for the Handicapped) five years ago. Among other topics, Wolfe discussed the start of Café Disco at FCC, which grew out of discussions with the Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities for “how we can be a blessing, no strings attached.” (Café Disco is similar to—but predates—Tim Tebow Night to Shine events.)

Wolfe wrote the article “Transforming Ability” for us in 2019, and we shared information on Ability Ministry’s origins in a Throwback Thursday feature around that same time.

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Lincoln Christian University’s Church Leaders’ Conference focusing on “Developing a Winning Game Plan” will feature Andrew Fitzgibbon, Mark Scott, and Brian Lowery. Cost is $35 per person through Feb. 10 (and free to high school students). Learn more and register at lincolnchristian.edu.

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Tyson Chastain interviews a different alumnus of Johnson University for each episode of his Sojournal podcast. For the 50th episode on Jan. 3, Chastain interviewed former president David Eubanks, who has been part of the Johnson community for more than 60 years.

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Bob Allen, 85, a graduate of Ozark Christian College and a longtime Christian minister who served as church relations director at Milligan University from 1986 to 2000, died at his home in Bluff City, Tenn., on Jan. 6. A full obituary is available here.

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At William Jessup University in Rocklin, Calif., the 2022 Faculty of Theology’s Annual Spring Lecture is set for 7 p.m. Feb. 10. The theme is “Belonging Together: Disability, Hospitality and the Church. Speaker will be Dr. Tom Reynolds, associate professor of theology at Emmanuel College at the University of Toronto. He is a parent and advocate with a son diagnosed on the autism spectrum. He also is the author of Vulnerable Communion: A Theology of Disability and Hospitality. Lecture tickets are $10. Learn more at Jessup.edu.

The purpose of the series is to engage the community in a deeper theological reflection on important biblical and cultural topics.

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A Christianity Today article about the loss of volunteers in religious organizations due to COVID-19 included a recommendation from Tom Pounder of New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, Va., that pastors “individually reconnect with volunteers who dropped off the schedule during the pandemic.”

“If we, as ministry leaders, are not connecting with people and letting them know of the variety of different options out there, then we will continue to have a lack of lay/volunteer leaders,” Pounder told the magazine.

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Belmont Christian Church, Christiansburg, Va., hosted a dress drive Saturday so teens could find the dress of their dreams. Proceeds benefited Tim Tebow’s Night to Shine Foundation. Melissa Poole planned the event in memory of her daughter, Ashlyn, who died in an automobile accident at age 16 in 2018. Teens were asked to make a $20 donation. There were more than 500 dress choices plus accessories, www.wsls.com reported. The church’s Night to Shine drive-through event is slated for 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Feb. 11.

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Traders Point Christian Church teamed with Wheeler Mission—which serves people who are homeless, hungry, and addicted—for a prayer walk and vigil in Indianapolis Monday to honor Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy, www.wthr reported.

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Send news to cs@christianstandardmedia.com.

Christian Standard

Contact us at cs@christianstandardmedia.com

1 Comment

  1. Mark Krause

    I am sad to learn of Dr. Hull’s death. He had a great positive influence on me and my understanding of the Bible.

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