Skip to Main Content

Archives and Special Collections at Southeastern: Culver, Robert D. papers

This guide is designed to introduce researchers to Archives and Special Collections at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Robert D. Culver papers, 1971-1996

Date(s): 1971-1996
Extent: 1.0 cu.ft.
Biographical Note: Robert Duncan Culver (1916-2015) was a professor who taught Old Testament and Theology at Grace Theological Seminary in Winona Lake, Indiana (1945-1951), Trinity Seminary in Deerfield, Illinois (1951-1954), Wheaton College and Graduate School in Wheaton, Illinois (1953-1962), and finally the renamed Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (1963-1974). He was also annual Director of the Near-East School of Archaeology at Jerusalem in 1969. When not teaching, he served as minister in the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches and the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA). He pastored in Washington state (1937-1939), Fremont, Ohio (1942-1945), and Lincoln, Ohio (1974-1977). Culver was one of the founding members of the Evangelical Theological Society.

After doing irregular work as a visiting professor following his retirement, he dedicated himself from 1990 to 2003 to writing his 1,300 page magnum opus, "Systematic Theology: Biblical and Historical," which was published in 2005. He was involved in a theological controversy during the 1980s and 1990s concerning the teaching of Trinity's Murray J. Harris on believers' and Christ's resurrection bodies. Desipite Culver's efforts and his 1993 book "A Wake Up Call," Trinity and the EFCA accepted Harris' views as orthodox. Culver's numerous publications also include a major commentary on the book of Daniel entitled "Daniel and the Latter Days," "The Earthly Career of Jesus, the Christ: A Life in Chronological, Geographical and Social Context," and "Civil Government: A Biblical View."

Scope and Contents: This collection contains correspondence, annotated manuscripts, newsletters, articles, book excerpts, and other materials ranging from 1971 to 1996 (predominantly 1988-1995) that were created or collected by Robert D. Culver. It relates to the controversy over the orthodoxy and professorship of Murray J. Harris at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. This collection primarily consists of correspondence with the leadership at TEDS, officers of the Evangelical Free Church of America, and many leading Evangelical voices. Two annotated manuscripts written by Culver, "A Wakeup Call" and "Some Middle Chapters," outline in detail his serious critique of Harris and the lack of response to his teaching. Some of these materials are also Norman L. Geisler's files on the controversy, containing mostly correspondence, which were shared with Robert Culver. 

Language(s): English
Conditions Governing Access: This collection is open for research.
Processing History: Arranged and described by Jonathan Shelton on 03-16-2018.
Preferred Citation: Robert D. Culver Papers, Archives and Special Collections, Library at Southeastern, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, NC.
Repository: Archives and Special Collections, Library at Southeastern, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, NC
Resource Identifier: ARC.075