Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Passing of Walter Wink

Mark Goodacre and Brice Jones are reporting that Walter Wink has died. Wink is well-known from his numerous books and his integration of social justice topics with biblical studies. I found the following biographical piece about him on Amazon

Walter Wink (born May 21, 1935) is a professor emeritus at Auburn Theological Seminary in New York City. His faculty discipline is Biblical interpretation. Wink earned his 1959 Master of Divinity and his 1963 Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary in New York City. Ordained a Methodist minister in 1961, he served as Pastor of First United Methodist Church, in Hitchcock, Texas from 1962–67. He then returned to Union Seminary as first Assistant, then Associate Professor of New Testament. In 1989–1990, he was a Peace Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace. He is known for his work on power structures, with a progressive Christianity view on current political and cultural matters. He coined the phrase "the myth of redemptive violence", and has contributed to discourse on homosexuality and religion, pacifism, psychology and Biblical Studies, and Jesus as a historical figure.

You can find a selection of wink's books at


  1. rev robert maury hundleyMay 11, 2012 at 10:05 AM

    WW could do what few in scholarship can do: walk w you into the room n show you that there was a light switch which you could to learn to use to see (light) the meaning of ancient Biblical stories.

  2. Walter probably lost his job at Union when he wrote and "posted to the door" his first little book, in which he presented the argument that the historical-critical method was bankrupt. That it couldn't deliver what it promised. It could tear down and dismantle the material but no offer one an opportunity for new meaning. He didn't mean it was worthless, he meant it could only do part of the job. He went on to spend many fruitful years at Auburn (which is on the Union campus) going out to lead bible studies at different seminaries and retreat centers. His books and nonviolent work in many countries is well known. But he also nourished himself and many of us through these in depth studies and encounters, specifically with the life and teachings of Jesus. This was the Spring to which he continually returned.