Today is the birthday of the late theologian Walter Wink, best known for his work on illuminating the biblical concept of the powers . In honor of the occasion, we offer this introductory guide to Walter Wink’s theology of the powers …
We’ve ordered this list in the order that we think the books should be read, and we offer a brief explanation of why each book was included. We’ve included excerpts of most the books via Google Books. At the end of the guide, we’ve included a video interview in which Walter Wink overviews his theology of the powers .
1) The Powers That Be: Theology for a New Millennium
A brief one-volume introduction (intended for general audiences) to Walter Wink’s theology of the powers. The Powers that Be is a great place to get oriented to Wink’s work on the powers.
In our fast-paced secular world, God and theology are second-class citizens. Money, politics, sports, and science seem better suited to the hard realities of our world. As the church steeple has been eclipsed by the skyscraper as the centerpiece of the urban landscape, so has the divine realm been set aside in favor of more immediate human experience. One sad consequence of this shift is the loss of spiritual and theological bearings, most clearly evident in our inability to understand or speak about such things. If the old way of viewing the universe no longer works, something else has to replace it.
The Powers That Be reclaims the divine realm as central to human existence by offering new ways of understanding our world in theological terms. Walter Wink reformulates ancient concepts, such as God and the devil, heaven and hell, angels and demons, principalities and powers, in light of our modern experience. He helps us see heaven and hell, sin and salvation, and the powers that shape our lives as tangible parts of our day-to-day experience, rather than as mysterious phantoms. Based on his reading of the Bible and analysis of the world around him, Wink creates a whole new language for talking about and to God. Equipped with this fresh world view, we can embark on a new relationship with God and our world into the next millennium.