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Faculty Profiles

Daniel Block, Ph.D. Wheaton College (IL)

Daniel Block, D.Phil.

Gunther H. Knoedler Professor Emeritus of Old Testament

On Faculty since 2005
BGC 543

My interest in the Old Testament was sparked by the ministry of a pastor during my days as a university student. This man had left a seminary professorship in Old Testament in California to pastor our church of about 300 members in northern Saskatchewan. He was God's instrument, inspiring me to devote my life to the study of the Scriptures for the glory of God and for the advance of biblical knowledge. For the past thirty years, I have had the supreme delight of sharing the word of God with students, seeking to challenge them to fulfill in their own lives the motto of Wheaton College: "For Christ and His Kingdom." It has been a special joy to watch as students, who often take introductory courses in Old Testament only because they are required to do so by the curriculum, suddenly awaken to the fact that the Old Testament is understandable and that its message is both life-giving and relevant to for everyday life, even in the 21st century.

The paradigm for my own research and ministry is set by Ezra, as described in Ezra 7:10: "He committed himself to the study the Torah of Yahweh, to put it into practice, and to teach his revealed will in Israel." This statement requires us to constantly ask serious questions of the Scriptures: What does the text say? Why does the text say it like that? What did the text mean to the original audience? What does the text have to say to me today? In order to answer these questions, we need to understand both the worlds out of which the biblical texts arose and the worlds in which we moderns live.

Although I was nurtured in the faith in a Mennonite Brethren context, for the last four decades my wife Ellen and I have had the joy of fellowship and ministry in Evangelical Free, Plymouth Brethren, Baptist General Conference, Evangelical Covenant, and Southern Baptist, and independent congregations. We have learned that everywhere there are people eager to please God and serious about integrating their faith with their daily lives. We are honored to be part of the faculty of Wheaton College, and to expend our energies training young people for this very purpose.

In addition to teaching in formal classroom situations, we have had the delight of preaching and teaching in many churches across the country and around the world. Weekend seminars on "Recovering a Biblical Theology of Worship" or "Resurrecting the Old Testament" have been particularly satisfying. Ellen and I are also concerned about the broader world. In recent years I have lectured and preached in Russia, England, Denmark, China, Greece, Singapore, Hong Kong, Kenya, and of course, my home country, Canada. When I need a break from my studies or the pressures of teaching, I visit my children and grandchildren in British Columbia and Germany and also do home improvement projects around the house. But nothing is more therapeutic than gardening, creating a miniature paradise in the little corner of the world in which we live. This too is an expression of worship and devotion to God.

School of Archaeology and Oriental Studies, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, England
D.Phil., Semitics: Classical Hebrew, 1982
Dissertation: The Foundations of National Identity: A Study in Ancient Northwest Semitic Perceptions

Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Deerfield, Illinois
D.Phil., Semitics: Classical Hebrew, 1982

University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
B.A., History/German, 1969

Friedrich Alexander University, Erlangen, Germany
Foreign Studies in German and Geistesgeschichte, 1968-1968

University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
B.Ed. General Education, 1968

Bethany Bible Institute, Hepburn, Saskatchewan
Diploma in Biblical Studies, 1965


  • Introduction to the Old Testament
  • Old Testament Theology
  • Old Testament Ethics
  • Old Testament Book Studies: Genesis, Deuteronomy, Judges and Ruth, Job, the Wisdom Literature, Ezekiel, Amos
  • Hebrew Grammar and Exegesis
  • A Biblical Theology of Worship
  • Expository Preaching from the Old Testament
  • Homiletics
  • Society of Biblical Literature
  • Evangelical Theological Society
  • Institute for Biblical Research

My areas of interest span most of the Old Testament. After spending fourteen years on Ezekiel and four on Judges and Ruth, for the past five years I have been absorbed by the Gospel according to Moses as set out for us in the book of Deuteronomy. In the meantime, I have also been heavily involved in the production of the New Living Translation of the Bible. My most recent project has been a manuscript, For the Glory of God: A Biblical Theology of Worship (Baker, fall 2016).

Ruth—The King is Coming. Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the Old Testament 8. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2015.

Bind Up the Testimony: Explorations in the Genesis of the Book of Isaiah. Edited with Richard L. Schultz. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 2015.

For the Glory of God: Recovering a Biblical Theology of Worship. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2014.

Obadiah: The Kingship Belongs to YHWH. Hearing the Message of Scripture. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2013.

Beyond the River Chebar: Studies in Kingship and Eschatology in the Book of Ezekiel. Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2013.

By the River Chebar: Historical, Literary, and Theological Studies in the Book of Ezekiel. Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2013.

Ezekiel’s Hope: A Commentary on Ezekiel 38-48. Jacob Milgrom and Daniel Block in Conversation. Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2012.

Deuteronomy. NIV Application Commentary. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2012.

The Gospel According to Moses: Theological and Ethical Reflections on the Book of Deuteronomy. Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2012.

How I Love Your Torah O LORD! Studies in the Book of Deuteronomy. Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2012.

Keeping God’s Earth: The Global Environment in Biblical Perspective. Ed. Daniel I. Block & Noah J. Toly. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2010.

“Judges.” In Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary. John H. Walton, ed. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2009). Volume 2, pages 94-241.

Israel: Ancient Kingdom or Late Invention. D. I. Block, ed. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2008.

The New Living Translation. Revised Edition. Wheaton: Tyndale House Publishers, 2004. Senior Translator with primary responsibility for the Pentateuch.

Judges, Ruth. New American Commentary 6. Nashville: Broadman and Holman, 1999.

The Book of Ezekiel, 2 vols. New International Commentary on the Old Testament. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1997/1998.

The Gods of the Nations: Studies in Ancient Near Eastern National Theology. Revised Edition. ETS Monograph. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House; reprint Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2013.

Essays in Edited Volumes

“Eden: A Temple? A Reassessment of the Biblical Evidence.” In From Creation to New Creation: Biblical Theology and Exegesis.
Essays in honor of G. K. Beale. Ed. D. M. Gurtner and B. L. Gladd. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 2013. Pp. 3–32.

“The Decalogue in the Hebrew Scriptures.” In Reading the Decalogue through the Centuries. 
Ed. J. Greenman. Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2012. Pp. 1-28.

“Who do Commentators say ‘the Lord’ is? The Scandalous Rock of Romans 10:13.” On the Writing of New Testament Commentaries: Festschrift for Grant R. Osborne on the Occasion of his 70th Birthday. 
Ed. S. E. Porter and E. J. Schnabel. Texts and Editions of New Testament Study 8. Leiden: Brill, 2012. Pp. 173-92.

“Worship.” In Dictionary of the Old Testament: Prophets. 
Ed. By Mark J. Boda and J. Gordon McConville. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2012. Pp. 867-78.

“The View from the Top: The Holy Spirit in the Prophets.” In Presence, Power and Promise: The Role of the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament. 
Ed. David G. Firth and Paul D. Wegner. Nottingham: Apollos, 2011. Pp. 175-207.

“Preaching Ezekiel.” In Reclaiming the Old Testament for Christian Preaching. 
Ed. G. J. R. Kent and P. J. Kissling. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2010. Pp. 157-78.

“Leader, Leadership, OT.” In The New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible.
Ed. K. D. Sakenfeld Nashville: Abingdon, 2008. Vol. 3. Pp. 621-26.

“Ruth 1: Book of.” In Dictionary of the Old Testament: Wisdom, Poetry & Writings. 
Ed. Tremper Longman III and Peter Enns. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2008. Pp. 672-87.

“Transformation of Royal Ideology in the Book of Ezekiel.” In Transforming Visions: Transformations of Text, Tradition, and Theology in Ezekiel.
Princeton Theological Monograph Series. Eds. M. Lyons and W. Tooman. Eugene, OR: Pickwick, 2010. Pp. 208-46.

“Preaching Ezekiel.” In Reclaiming the Old Testament for Christian Preaching. 
Ed. G. J. R. Kent and P. J. Kissling. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2010. Pp. 157-78.

“All Creatures Great and Small: Recovering a Deuteronomic Theology of Animals.” In The Old Testament in the Life of God’s People: Essays in Honor of Elmer A. Martens. 
Ed. J. Isaak. Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns, 2009. Pp. 283-305.

“What has Delphi to do with Samaria? Ambiguity and Delusion in Israelite Prophecy.” In Writing and Ancient Near Eastern Society: Papers in Honour of Alan R. Millard. Ed. P. Bienkowski, C. Mee, and E. Slater. 
New York/London: T & T Clark, 2005. Pp. 189-216.

“God.” In Dictionary of the Old Testament Historical Books. 
Ed. B. T. Arnold and H. G. M. Williamson. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2005. Pp. 336-55.

“Other Religions in Old Testament Theology.” In Biblical Faith and Other Religions: An Evangelical Assessment. 
Ed. D. W. Baker. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2004. Pp. 43-78.

“The Old Testament on Hell?” In Hell Under Fire. 
Ed. C. W. Morgan and R. A. Peterson. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004. Pp. 43-65.

“Marriage and Family in Ancient Israel.” In Marriage and Family in the Biblical World. 
Ed. K. Campbell. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2003. Pp. 33-102.

“My Servant David: Ancient Israel's Vision of the Messiah,” in Israel's Messiah in the Bible and the Dead Sea Scrolls. 
Ed. R. S. Hess and M. D. Carroll R. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2003. Pp. 17-56.

“Divine Abandonment: Ezekiel’s Adaptation of an Ancient Near Eastern Motif,” in Perspectives on Ezekiel: Theology and Anthropology.
SBL Symposium Series 9, Margaret S. Odell and John T. Strong, eds. Atlanta: Scholars Press, 2000. Pp. 15-42.

“Gog and Magog in Ezekiel’s Eschatological Vision.” In “The Reader Must Understand”: Eschatology in Bible and Theology
Eds. K. Brower and M. Elliott. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1997. Pp. 85-116.

Essays in Scholarly Journals

“Ruth and Work.” Contribution to The Theology of Work Projecthttp://theologyofwork.org/old-testament/ruth-and-work. 2013.

“What do these stones mean? The Riddle of Deuteronomy 27.” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 56 (2013): 17-41.

“The Tender Cedar Sprig: Ezekiel on Jehoiachin.” Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel 1 (2012): 173-202.

“Preaching Old Testament Law to New Testament Christians.” Southeastern Theological Review 3/2 (2012): 195-221; reprint of article in three parts. Ministry 78/5 (2006): 5-11; 78/7 (2006): 12-16; 78/9 (2006): 15-18.

“Preaching Old Testament Apocalyptic to a New Testament Church.” Calvin Theological Journal 41 (2006): 17-52.

“The Joy of Worship: The Mosaic Invitation to the Presence of God (Deut. 12:1-14).” Bibliotheca Sacra 162 (2005): 131-49.

“The Grace of Torah: The Mosaic Prescription for Life (Deut. 4:1-8; 6:20-25).” Bibliotheca Sacra 162 (2005): 3-22.

“How Many Is God? An Investigation into the Meaning of Deuteronomy 6:4-5.” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 47 (2004): 193-212.

“Why Deborah's Different.” Bible Review. 17/3 (June, 2002): 34-40,49-52.

“Handel’s Messiah: Biblical and Theological Perspectives.” Didaskalia 12 (2001): 1-23.

“Unspeakable Crimes: The Abuse of Women in the Book of Judges.” The Southern Baptist Theological Journal 2 (1998): 46-55.

“Empowered by the Spirit of God: The Holy Spirit in the Historiographic Writings of the Old Testament.” The Southern Baptist Theological Journal 1 (1997): 42-61.

“Will the Real Gideon Please Stand Up? Narrative Style and Intention in Judges 6-9.” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 40 (1997): 353-66.

“Reviving God’s Covenant: Reflections on Malachi 2:1-9.” Reformation and Revival Journal 3 (1995).

“Beyond the Grave: Ezekiel’s Vision of Death and Afterlife.” Bulletin for Biblical Research 2 (1993): 13-41.

“Chasing a Phantom: The Search for the Historical Marduk.” Archaeology in the Biblical World 2 (1992): 20-43.

“Gog in Prophetic Tradition: A New Look at Ezekiel XXXVIII 17.” Vetus Testamentum 42 (1992): 154-72.

“Ezekiel’s Boiling Cauldron: A Form Critical Solution to Ezekiel XXIV 1-14.” Vetus Testamentum 41 (1991): 12-37.

“Echo Narrative Technique: The Rhetorical Use of Genesis 19:1-11 in Judges 9:22-26.” Westminster Theological Journal 52 (1990): 325-36.

“The Prophet of the Spirit: The Use of rwh in the Book of Ezekiel.” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 32 (1988): 27-50.

“Text and Emotion: A Study in the ‘Corruptions’ in the Text of Ezekiel’s Inaugural Vision.” Catholic Biblical Quarterly 50 (1988): 1-25.

“Gog and the Pouring Out of the Spirit: Reflections on Ezekiel 39:21-29.”Vetus Testamentum 37 (1997): 257-70.

“The Role of Language in Ancient Perceptions of National Identity.” Journal of Biblical Literature 103 (1984): 321-40.

“‘Israel’ - ‘Sons of Israel’: A Study in Hebrew Eponymic Usage.” Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses 13 (1984): 301-26.

“Bny 'mwn: The Sons of Ammon.” Andrews University Seminary Studies 22 (1984): 197-212.