Ian Randall was born in the north of Scotland. At the University of Aberdeen he studied economics and history. He then worked in human resources for companies in the south of England. In the early 1980s he followed a sense of call to ordained Baptist ministry and studied at Regent’s Park College, Oxford. He had local church pastorates and then joined the teaching staff at Spurgeon’s College, London, in 1992. He was a tutor, College chaplain, later Deputy Principal, and then director of research. For two periods, from 1999 to 2002 and again from 2006 to 2008, he was seconded to teach at the International Baptist Theological Seminary (IBTS) in Prague, Czech Republic. He now lives in Cambridge and is a Senior Research Fellow of Spurgeon’s College and IBTS.
The history of renewal movements within Christianity, especially in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, has been a major field of interest for Ian. A particular focus has been on the relationship between spirituality, mission and society. His PhD looked at these issues in England in the period between the first and second world wars. Ian has written several books and many articles, and has edited a number of volumes. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He has supervised a considerable number of PhD students, particularly in the area of Eastern European studies.
Ian became interested in Charles Raven a number of years ago, and in 2014, fifty years after Raven’s death, it seemed appropriate to examine more closely the wide-ranging contribution of this Cambridge figure, not least as both a Professor of Divinity and a promoter of science.