English-born Canadian theologian and prolific, influential author J.I. Packer, whose classic evangelical title Knowing God has sold more than 1.2 million copies, died July 17, his publisher has announced. He was 93.
Jeff Crosby, publisher for IVP, which released many of Packer’s 47 titles across decades, including Knowing God in 1973, praised him as a man who indeed, “knew and loved God and helped others to do likewise.”
James Innell Packer, born in England in 1926, preached and lectured widely in Great Britain and North America, and served as general editor of the English Standard Version of the Bible published in 2001, and as theological editor of the Study Bible version. In 2014, Packer was named Author of the Year by the Association of Logos Bookstores, according to the publisher.
Packer was also a frequent contributor to and an executive editor of Christianity Today, and wrote numerous articles published in journals such as Churchman, SouthWestern Journal, Reformation & Revival Journal, and Touchstone. In addition to Knowing God, his books include Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God (1961), Keep in Step with the Spirit (1984), A Quest for Godliness: The Puritan Vision of the Christian Life(1994), and Weakness Is the Way (2013).
Once named to Time magazine’s list of the 25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America, Packer moved from his roots in the Church of England to become a founding theologian for the Anglican Church in North America in 2009 when the denomination broke from the Episcopal Church after it ratified a gay bishop