Walter Elwell

Walter A. Elwell, born 1937 in Florida, is an evangelical theologian and noted editor of several evangelical standard reference works. He is professor emeritus of Bible and Theology at Wheaton College where he taught from 1975 to 2003.

Elwell earned his B.A. and M.A. from Wheaton College. He then attended the University of Chicago and University of Tubingen before earning his Ph.D. from the University of Edinburgh. He has been a consultant to both the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association and the Evangelical Book Club, and a member of the Society of Biblical Literature, Institute for Biblical Research, Evangelical Theological Society, and Chicago Society of Biblical Research.

Elwell has sought to make the results of technical research available to laypeople, combining rigorous scholarship, readable style, and pedagogical soundness to meet a desperate need in today’s church.

In the introduction to the Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, he points out that "In these increasingly post-Christian and post-modern days there is a virtual illiteracy not only about the historical or factual content of the Bible but also about what the Bible teaches theologically."

Selected works

  • with Robert W. Yarbrough, Encountering the New Testament: A Historical and Theological Survey. 2nd edition. Baker Academic, 2005.
  • with Robert W. Yarbrough, Readings from the First-Century World: Primary Sources for New Testament Study. Baker Academic, 1998.

Edited works

  • with Philip W. Comfort, Tyndale Bible Dictionary. Tyndale House Publishers, 2008.
  • Baker Reference Library:

    • Evangelical Dictionary of Theology. Baker Academic, 2001.
    • Baker Commentary on the Bible. Baker Academic, 2001.
    • Baker Topical Guide to the Bible: New International Version. Baker Academic, 1991.
    • Baker Theological Dictionary of the Bible. Baker Academic, 2001.
  • Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible, 4 vols. Baker, 1997.

  • Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology. Baker, 1996.

  • The Concise Dictionary of the Christian Tradition. Zondervan, 1989.