Influential Canadian theologian: Alzheimer’s


An article in the Vancouver Sun recently released the news that Clark Pinnock, the provocative Canadian theologian behind “open theism,” has Alzheimer’s.

I actually wrote my Master’s thesis way back when on Pinnock. The thesis was provocatively and daringly entitled, “The Theological Methodology of Clark H. Pinnock.” (Ok, so it wasn’t so provocative or daring. It’s was a master’s thesis!)

I only had the privilege to meet Pinnock once at an AAR meeting in Orlando a few years back. We had lunch together, and he was kind enough to tell me that he had “learned much” from reading my thesis. He even squeezed in a footnote to my thesis in one of his articles. (Clark H. Pinnock, “New Dimensions in Theological Method,” New Dimensions in Evangelical Thought. IVP, 1998). I also later got invited by Stan Porter to contribute an essay for a Festschrift for Pinnock. (My essay was entitled, “The Filioque: Assessing Evangelical Approaches to a Knotty Problem” in Semper Reformandum: Studies in Honour of Clark H. Pinnock. Paternoster Press, 2003.)

Though I haven’t read much from Pinnock in the past decade, I do owe him a debt of gratitude for my development as a theologian. Though I have situated myself quite a distance from him theologically, I nevertheless have tried to learn from him a dogged determination to keep returning to Scripture for our theology, a godly graciousness in the face of all critics, and an undying commitment to evangelism.

Oh yes, Pinnock is known as being acerbic at times himself, but at a personal level, I found him to be full of curiosity and very gracious to me, a young upstart theologian!


7 thoughts on “Influential Canadian theologian: Alzheimer’s

  1. Evelyn

    Hi David I am sure you will be surprised that i remember when you were writing your thesis
    on Clark Pinnock. I bet you didn’t know that I always look at your blogs but….. I only read the ones that make sense to me . “SMILE”


  2. Bacho


    thanks for the post. What a sad news about Pinnock. I heard him give a lecture on the Role of Holy Spirit in salvation at Regent College few years ago. Simple. Unassuming. Humble. Gracious in his responses to students. While I too stand at a distance from him, I admire his academic honesty and willingness to go where the Text takes him even if it is costly.

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