George Raymond Beasley-Murray, professor of New Testament 1973-1980, was born on October 10, 1916 in London, England. Beasley-Murray became a Christian in 1932 through the preaching of a student from Spurgeon’s College in South London. As a youth, his interests lay in music, and he developed into an accomplished pianist. His talent for piano took a backseat when Beasley-Murray discovered New Testament Greek. He enrolled in Spurgeon’s College in 1936 to study the subject and quickly became a leader among his peers.
After college, Beasley-Murray became a minister in Ashurst Drive Baptist Church in East London. He guided the church through the tumultuous times of the Second World War and led it in sustained evangelistic mission to a broken country. During this pastorate, Beasley-Murray married Ruth Weston and pursued his Master’s in Theology in New Testament Studies at King’s College, London. Prior to serving as the Principal of Spurgeon’s College from 1958 to 1973, he labored in another pastorate and worked as a tutor at Spurgeon’s College. He also taught New Testament at the International Baptist Theological Seminary in Rüschlikon, Switzerland. Beasley-Murray established a reputation through this body of work as a scholar marked by evangelical conviction and openness to conversation with the ecumenical movements of his day.
From 1973 to 1980 he served as James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament at Southern. While at the seminary, Beasley-Murray was able to resume his writing career, which had fallen dormant during his tenure at Spurgeon’s College. He was the author of a number of works on the New Testament, most notably Baptism in the New Testament and The Book of Revelation (New Century Bible Commentary.) Beasley-Murray died on February 23, 2000 in Brighton, England.
Sources: Paul Beasley-Murray, Fearless for Truth: A Personal Portrait of the Life of George Raymond Beasley-Murray, UK: Paternoster, 2002.