Gentry receives research grant for third time

Communications Staff — April 28, 2008

For the third time, Peter Gentry, professor of Old Testament interpretation at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has received a Lilly Theological Research Grant.

The grant, administered by the Association of Theological Schools (ATS) and funded by the Lilly Foundation, is awarded after a team of scholars evaluates applicants’ research proposals. ATS is the main accrediting agency for theological schools in North America.

Gentry plans to use the $12,000 award to fund research in Germany during a sabbatical from January through June 2009. The research will allow Gentry to finish a critical edition of the Greek text of Ecclesiastes for the Goettingen Septuagint Series.

The Septuagint is a Greek translation of the Old Testament, which was originally written in Hebrew and Aramaic. Biblical scholars regard the Septuagint as important because some of the earliest texts of the Old Testament were written in Greek and because the New Testament writers quote from the Septuagint frequently.

“I am full of gratitude to God for providing funds necessary to complete my research and therefore fulfill my calling and ministry to give the church a better text of Ecclesiastes,” Gentry said. “The honor belongs to God.”

“The Lilly Grant is a prestigious award given to those of the highest level of scholarship,” said Russell Moore, dean of the School of Theology and senior vice president for academic administration. “The School of Theology is proud to have Dr. Gentry as a member of its faculty and we congratulate him in this most distinguished honor.”

Previously Gentry received a $5,000 Lilly Theological Research Grant in 2002-2003 and a $10,000 grant in 2005-2006.

Gentry said receiving this latest grant will give him opportunities to show others what Christian scholarship should look like.

“Recipients of the grant must attend a conference in Pittsburgh,” he said. “This is a great opportunity to demonstrate before others who come from other institutions accredited by ATS what Christian scholarship entails. I have also had many opportunities to lecture in Germany as a result of these grants.”

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