Cooper Librairy

 
 

The story of Dr. and Mrs. Cooper’s life, like the heroes of the faith listed in Hebrews 11, is the story of long struggles and many difficulties met and overcome; of privations endured by the entire family; of long hours of physical and mental work daily. And it is the story of God moving in mysterious ways to prepare them for His service in the work He called them to do. They simply ignored personal fatigue, inconveniences and hardships in order to be true to the trust the Lord had given them.

After five years of Bible school financed by part-time work and summer evangelistic services in country churches and tents in out-of-the-way places (which paid very small remuneration), he discovered one morning while preaching on prophecy that what he was propounding was in error. It so petrified him that he was ready to leave the ministry, but when he wrote his fiancée about it she responded that “the callings of God are not repented of, and God’s commands are His enablings… go to school again, and learn more truth.” They were married shortly thereafter and together David and Lita Cooper moved to Louisville, Kentucky, to continue his education.

His desire for truth led him to work his way through several universities and a seminary for another eight years. While straining to support not only himself but a growing family — four children in all and a wife whose health was most precarious, David Cooper earned, besides the usual college degrees, two Master’s degrees (a Master of Arts and a Master of Theology) and a Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) degree. During his lifetime he was also honored with a D.D. (Doctor of Divinity) and a Litt.D. (Doctor of Letters).

Never satisfied with having to accept translations of the Scriptures done by others, he majored in Hebrew and Greek, taking both at the same time-seven and a half years of each. His Greek professor was Dr. A.T. Robertson, still considered by many as the greatest Greek grammarian who ever lived.

Dr. Cooper became proficient in nine languages in all — English, Latin, Spanish, German and French, as well as those of Biblical times, Aramaic, Babylonian (cuneiform), Hebrew and Greek. He was an English professor at the university level for a time, and also taught Hebrew and Greek.

God permitted Dr. Cooper to visit the Holy Land three times, spending a total of seven months there in the first two trips before Israel became a State. “I got an accurate idea of the country and its development then,” he explained, so that when he was able to go again shortly after Israel became a State, he could evaluate the difference. “Lo and behold!” he wrote, “I found that everything, practically, had changed. That part of Palestine that now is incorporated in the State of Israel is different in every way from what it was when I was there on my two former visits.” He felt that God took him there to “see the present situation upon the background of the past.” He said, “Now I can understand how to approach His own people under the changed conditions.” Spending seventy more days there, “with an open Bible and with an open heart,” he was able to grasp the situation as it really was.

The Biblical Research Society made many claims upon his time. There was the Biblical Research Monthly and its many articles to be written and its outreach to be overseen; the many speaking engagements; the books of the Messianic Series which were sent (and still are being sent) free of charge to Jews not yet convinced as to the Messiahship of Jesus. There seemed always to be one more book to be written; letters to be answered. Then there was the building program that was forced upon him. Under his son’s managership many of these things could be handled by the staff, but it was Dr. Cooper’s pen and eye that kept things moving. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, he spent many hours each day in Bible study and prayer. More than anything else in his life, Dr. Cooper wanted to do God’s will. This was the motto of his life, which he often quoted: “God’s will-nothing less, nothing more, nothing else.” To accomplish that, he realized he would have to know God’s truth. For twenty years he would arise at 4 A.M. to study God’s Word. In the latter years of his life Mrs. Cooper insisted that he preserve his strength by not rising until 6 A.M. for his Bible study. Nevertheless, around four hours a day were given to studying God’s Word. Before looking at any other book he preferred to study the Bible. Then, when thoroughly convinced of the meaning and interpretation of a certain passage, he would see what truth God had given others on the subject.

Dr. Cooper was always willing to share his knowledge with young ministers. These young men were his “Timothy’s” about whom he cared deeply, feeling compelled to ground them in the Word with the same sense of responsibility that he felt about the 144,000 Jewish evangelists who will preach the Gospel all over the world during the Tribulation (Revelation 7). He was convinced that we are in the last days, and that the books of the Messianic Series would not only be used to bring today’s honest-hearted Jewish readers to a decision for Christ, but that they would be used of God to indoctrinate the 144,000 Jewish evangelists that will preach the Gospel after the Church has been taken up in the Rapture.

Dr. Cooper, in having studied the Old Testament so thoroughly to prepare himself for writing the books of the Messianic Series, had unusual insight into the prophetic plan of God for the ages. The recurring subject of his articles in the Biblical Research Monthly was prophecy. He felt that there was a great need for a proper understanding of this subject. “We have had entirely too much guessing and speculation in the field of prophecy,” he wrote. “It is time that we are studying the text accurately and finding out exactly what it says, and then interpreting it in the light of all other Scriptural facts and knowledge.”

He continually referred to The Golden Rule of Interpretation, quoted below:

When the plain sense of Scripture makes common sense, seek no other sense; therefore, take every word at its primary, ordinary, usual, literal meaning unless the facts of the immediate context, studied in the light of related passages and axiomatic and fundamental truths, indicate clearly otherwise.

“By following this rule we avoid the many pitfalls of attempting to read into the text something that is not there, and of failing to see what is actually expressed in the Sacred Word,” he would explain to his Bible classes. “Though there are those who do not realize the value of the study of prophecy, let me call attention to the fact that the Lord gave us the prophetic portions of His Word for our enlightenment and enrichment. ‘Every scripture [is*] inspired of God, is also profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction which is in righteousness: that the man of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every good work’ (2 Timothy 3:16,17). Without the proper knowledge of the prophetic Word no one can be adequately fitted or completed unto all the good works which God desires of His children.”

For a number of decades now, many well-known, conservative scholars have accepted and relied upon Dr. Cooper’s expositions of Scriptural truths. They have appreciated his intense study of the Old Testament and his unusual fluency in the old Biblical languages, coupled with his unwavering conviction that the Bible is God’s Word, inerrant in its original languages a saying exactly what God meant for it to say.

*A.S.V. alternate, footnote. See also K.J.V., N.A.S.V.

¹ Forward. Future Events Revealed (pp. xiv-xviii).

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