Featured Faculty – Professor Emeritus David Needham

11 comments Written on July 7th, 2011 by
Categories: General

Since there are no chapels in the summer time, the Alumni Department is responding to your interest in hearing more about the professors who have worked at Multnomah and have special places in your hearts. Below is a short synopsis from one of our former faculty members, Professor David Needham who worked at Multnomah for 44 years and deeply changed the lives of many.

Professor Needham has recently traveled with Director of Alumni Relations, Michelle Peel, to be the speaker at our Southern California alumni regional event.

What is Professor Needham doing now?

Since his retirement from Multnomah University, Professor Needham has continued to be quite involved teaching an adult class at Hinson Baptist Church.  He enjoys the extra time that retirement has afforded him to prepare for teaching and write another book which he has just finished called, "How Does It Look From the Top of the Wall?". In this book, he expresses what he believes to be the most significant things found in the book of Isaiah. He also enjoys travelling, spending time with family and his wife, Mary Jo whom he will have shared 57 years with this summer (pictured to the right).  They have two children and three grandchildren. When time allows, he also looks forward to an occasional visit back to campus to maintain dear friendships here, and he has access to the Library!

When we asked him what he has been learning since retirement, he responded that  after all his years of study, he is continually amazed by the truth that God loves us.  There are so many things in life that challenge this seemingly simple statement,  and yet there are so many facets to this truth that he is still learning ever more and more deeply. When asked about what counsel that he would give in order to encourage alumni, he said "Never weary of being good receivers of the grace and love of God.  Though the Bible says "It is required of a steward that he/she be found faithful," I am convinced that the most crucial "faithfulness" issue is in faithfully living in dependency upon the Holy Spirit to release through us the risen life and love of Christ, keeping in mind that we are moving ever closer to an awesome destiny."

About the Professor

David C. Needham was raised as one of four children in an authentic Christian home in a rural, ranch environment in Southern California.  Graduating from both Westmont College and Dallas Theological Seminary with BA and ThM degrees, he accepted a youth and Christian education ministry position in his home church, the Community Church of Vista, California.  Four years later he became pastor of the Laguna Beach Calvary Evangelical Free Church.  Another four years later he was invited to join the faculty at Multnomah University where he eventually became Distinguished Professor of Theology. Presently in print are two books he has written titled, Close to His Majesty and Birthright, Christian Do You Know Who You Are? These books strive to encourage others to live as receivers, responders, and displayers of God’s love, is his passion, encouraging fellow believers in an enthusiastic, relational response to God and his Word.


11 comments “Featured Faculty – Professor Emeritus David Needham”

Please tell Dr. Needham that I only attended Multnomah for 1 year, but that year was pivital in my life. I had never really known in my heart that God loved me so very dearly and that He was ‘crazy’ about me until I went thru the doctrine of God class with Dr. Needham. That class gave me a clear understanding of who He was and how He loved me and those with whom I walk thru life; my life has never been the same since. I thank God for Dr. Needham’s ministry and I thank Dr. Needham for making himself available to touch the lives of countless students.

Count me as another one who was profoundly and permanently impacted by the ministry of this wonderful man. Many of his sermons and lectures (and prayers!) still resonate in my heart some 25 years later! Just reading this article brought tears to my eyes as it reminded me of the many profound truths that God used Professor Needham to drill deeply into my heart. I am eternally grateful for your faithful, passionate ministry, David!

Thanks for the memories. David Needham was my favorite back in the day when I attended Multnomah in the 70’s. His passion for Jesus and sympathetic understanding of the struggles concerns of his students marked his charactor and his life. I credit his book “Birthright” for giving me the perspective necessary to begin seeing my full potential as a child of God. Thanks again Dave!

I will never forget sitting just two rows back from Professor Needham as he taught. From my vantage point I was looking somewhat up to him as his gazed fixed into the heavenlies as he spoke on his friend, God.

Honesty and passion come to mind when I think of Mr. Needham….and a resonating and vibrant love of God.

I very much enjoyed getting to know such a fine person.

I remember sitting in Dr. Needham’s class and feeling a bit like we were near one who like Moses had been in the presence of God and his face was still glowing. His love for God was inspiring. Thank you Dr. Neeham and Multnomah for your influence on my life.

My connection with Multnomah goes back even before I became a Christian; in fact it was very much the witness of MSB students then attending the old Staub Memorial Church in Portland which led me to realize my need of Christ. My first stab at “Christian service” was to join the Staub choir, then directed by Dr. Roger Congdon of MSB, who I soon came to admire and respect and whose memory is close to my heart. I was later privileged to attend evening classes at Multnomah, and then to attend as a regular student. Although circumstances dictated that I was not able to graduate from MSB. my time there, and the life/spiritual preparation I received there have been instrumental in carrying me, over the years, through some very difficult and trying times. I am eternally grateful to each and every member of the MSB staff and faculty I encountered as an MSB student. I am still excited about the way the instructors brought God’s word alive for me. More than just the instruction in the things of God, however, I remain impressed and challenged by the personal example and integrity of all my instructors. As for Dr Needham, how I enjoyed his enthusiasm for God’s word. Especially I am grateful to him for introducing me to the Old Testament Prophets, and the insight into their relationship to the N.T. that he instilled to his students. In my opinion Multnomah was as blessed these many years to have had him on the faculty as I was in having him (and this goes for all my MSB instuctors) as my teacher. Thank you, Dr Needham, for your committment to our Savior and His word.

If there is anyone else, other than Prof. Needham, who better embodies living in relationship with our Lord, I do not know who it is. I routinely use his ilustrations in speaking about eternity to others, as well as other truths I learned in his classes. But more than doctrine, more than prophetic writings class, I have been impacted by his willingess to share intimate conversations he has had while wrestling with God. I am glad he is still working to advance the ministry of Multnomah.

Professor Needham was one of my favorite professors during my experience at Multnomah. I still remember the enlightening class discussions and the discussion I had with David Needham at a retreat. His love and passion for Jesus Christ truly is an encouragement and example to all of us as followers of Christ.

Classes with Dr. Needham always led us right into the presence of God. I can still hear him leading us in singing: “Teach me Thy way, O Lord, Teach me Thy way…”

Rev. Needham was my favorite professor. What a man of God he is. Thank you for publishing this about him, his wife & ongoing ministry. PTL.

Count me as another one who was profoundly and permanently impacted by the ministry of this wonderful man. Many of his lectures (and prayers!) from my Old Testament Prophets class still resonate in my heart some 32 years later! I am often reminded of Professor Needham’s many tears as he shared the many profound truths in the book of Hosea drilled deeply into my heart. I am eternally grateful for your faithful, passionate ministry, Professor Needham!