Academic journal article Theological Studies

Walter Wink: Collected Readings

Academic journal article Theological Studies

Walter Wink: Collected Readings

Article excerpt

Walter Wink: Collected Readings. Edited by Henry French. Minneapolis: Fortress, 2013. Pp. xxxii + 311. $34.

This judicious and substantial selection is an excellent introduction to the core works of Walter Wink. I highly recommend it for biblical, theological, or ethics courses at the seminary and collegiate level.

A warm foreword by Marcus Borg signals Wink's participation in the Jesus Seminar, to which his magisterial work, The Human Being, effectively responds. That remarkable book on the "son of man" sayings in the Gospels (which French himself assesses as the most important) is well represented in the final section. Its hermeneutical framing takes up themes from the very first selection, truly important and happily included, from The Bible in Human Transformation. That little tract, beginning with the declaration, "Historical biblical criticism is bankrupt" (3), assails the myth of objectivity, advocates an engaged reading of the text, and presages liberation hermeneutics. It also caused Wink's being denied tenure and blacklisted in the guild.

Others, myself included, regard the famous trilogy, Naming the Powers (1984), Unmasking the Powers (1986), and Engaging the Powers (1992)--republished here, as truly his most influential. They have brought the biblical language of power back on the map of theological ethics. …

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