Here is my list of the top ten most influential Old Testament scholars since 1800.1 For the sake of my academic career, I will exclude my teachers from consideration.
- Julius Wellhausen-no one has been more influential in the last century-plus than him
- William F. Albright-the person who created “Biblical Archaeology”
- Martin Noth-ever heard of the Deuteronomistic History?
- Hermann Gunkel-form critical scholar
- Gerhard von Rad-brought Old Testament theology back to the forefront
- Frank Moore Cross-dean of epigraphy
- Norman Gottwald-integration of the social sciences into biblical studies
- Brevard Childs-canonical criticism
- John Van Seters and Thomas L. Thompson-”minimalism” is born
- William Dever-archaeologist extraordinaire
Agreements? Disagreements? Jilted because you’re not on the list?
- My thanks to Jake McCarty for the suggestion. [back]