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Rev Professor W Gordon Campbell

Professor of New Testament

Rev Professor W Gordon Campbell



ResearchGate Academia Revue Reformee EXCELSIS


Gordon began working life as a modern languages teacher. Following theological studies at Union, he was successively assistant minister in Ulsterville Presbyterian Church, Belfast (1986–89) and minister of Cognac and Segonzac Reformed Churches (1989–1994) and Marseilles South–East Reformed Church (1995–97), in the Reformed Church of France. Gordon was Professor of New Testament at  Faculté Jean Calvin (FJC) in Aix–en–Provence, France (1998–2005), as well as vice–principal and then principal of the College; as Associate Professor since 2005, he continues to help deliver the curriculum at FJC on an annual basis and will inaugurate a new module on Hebrews in 2019. Gordon is also visiting Professor of New Testament at Baltic Reformed Theological Seminary inRiga, Latvia.

Gordon became Professor of New Testament Studies at Union in 2007 and more recently Head of Biblical Studies. He has been Assistant Director (undergraduate affairs) in the Institute of Theology, Queen’s University (2010–17) and Adviser of Studies for all undergraduate students. As staff reference person, in Union, for mentoring and the general support of students, Gordon oversees the student experience, is lead personal tutor and also has responsibility for Erasmus and Study Abroad opportunities.

Gordon favours approaches to Scripture which respect the integrity of texts and which also investigate their contribution to larger corpora and to the Canon as a whole. Gordon’s publications, reflecting various interests or commissions, include for example (1999) the motif of progress in the Pauline mission; (2002) covenant and family in New Testament perspective; (2003) the cult of the body and body of Christ in Corinth; (2004) the synoptic problem; (2006) death and resurrection; or Luke 1–2 and ancient historiography; (2010; 2016) the Jesus of Calvin’s Gospels commentary; or the Pilgrim Leader and the pilgrims in Hebrews; (2019) Luther, the Letter of James and ‘all Scripture’ (2 Tim 3.16): when faith that justifies works to critique the canon.

Gordon’s area  of special expertise is the Book of Revelation. His PhD dissertation on Parody in the Apocalypse (2002) reworked into a unique thematic study of Revelation and published first in French (2007), then in English (Reading Revelation: A Thematic Approach, Cambs, Jas, Clarke, 2012). Diverse other contributions on Revelation include the following topics: (2001) story and interpretation; (2003) apocalypse and extermination; or true and false proclamation; (2004) feminine–urban imagery; covenant rupture and restoration; or rival identities; (2005) the royalty of God, the Lamb and his followers; (2006) perseverance of the saints; (2015) a reading of Revelation’s violence; (2016) Revelation’s implied worshipper; or the Book of Revelation and New Testament Theology.

Several contributions have come from Gordon’s recent research project on the role played by the Book of Revelation in Martin Luther’s Bible publishing: (2017) Luther, Revelation and the New Testament Canon; Collaborative verbal and visual interpretation of Revelation in Luther’s September Testament (1522) and revised New Testament (1530); Visual exegesis of the Book of Revelation in Martin Luther’s September Testament (1522); (2019) Visualising Revelation for Luther’s New Testament (1522–1546): debt, design and development. A commissioned piece, on Spirit, seven spirits and anti–spirits in the Book of Revelation, is also forthcoming.

Gordon is an elder in his local Church, where since 2012 he has been instrumental in developing and encouraging all–age worship; he is also on the rota of pianists.  Gordon likes meeting new people, exploring new places and attempting to communicate in new languages. Gordon’s wife Sandra is a nursery–school teacher: together they are parents to four young adults and have one grandchild.