RICHARD J. MURPHY
The Library in Jackson Hall is named in honor of Richard John Murphy. Born in Ireland on August 29, 1887, he was led to the Lord by a Salvation Army message.
He graduated from Cliff College in England (Wesleyan Methodist) in 1907. He was immersed by a Methodist preacher, and ordained a Baptist minister in England in 1910. As a member of the Irish Baptist Home Mission, he was presented with the opportunity to pastor churches in Poyntzpass and Tanderagee. He was also a member of the Baptist Union of Ireland. When Richard and Esther Murphy came to the U.S. he pastored a Baptist Church in Rippon, WI.
He completed a Moody Bible Institute correspondence course in 1919 and received a certificate from the Pastor's Department of the Bible Teacher's Training School in New York City in 1921. He also graduated from Northern Baptist Seminary, Chicago, in 1922, earning Bachelor of Theology and Bachelor of Divinity degrees.
After this, he pastored the First Baptist Church, Niles OH, and Wortley Road Baptist Church, London, Ontario (he might have met his friend T.T. Shields there). He came to the First Baptist Church, Johnson City, NY, in 1926. In 1928, he received an honorary doctorate from Northwestern Seminary.
While pastoring in Johnson City, he also taught Biblical Interpretation as an adjunct faculty at Practical Bible Training School. Practical's 1929 yearbook states, "Dr. Murphy has been a servant of God used mightily by Him to bring us many helpful Bible studies. He is intrepid but gentle, firm but kind, honest, beneficent and unselfish."
Also while in Johnson City, Dr. Murphy was Moderator for the Broome-Tioga Baptist Association, President of the Baptist Minister's Association in the Binghamton area, and was a member of the New York State Baptist Convention’s (NBC’s) Missionary Committee on Evangelism.
He was a founder of Baptist Bible Seminary, and its first official president from June 1933 to August 5, 1933, when he died from infection of the tonsils at age 42.
Dr. Emory Bancroft spoke at his funeral about, "Dr. Murphy's vision for a Baptist Seminary." Dr. Will H. Houghton, who eulogized him, stated that "his record was above reproach in every way."