Colin E. Gunton

Colin E. Gunton (Jan 19, 1941 - May 6, 2003) was a British United Reformed systematic theologian. He taught at King's College, London from 1969 until his death in the Spring of 2003.


Brief biography

Colin Gunton grew up in Nottingham, England. He first studied the "Greats" (or 'Classics') at Hertford College Oxford and graduated with a BA in 1966, the same year he was married. He then began his study of theology, and a year later received an MA from Mansfield College Oxford. After completing his MA, Gunton began his doctoral work under the direction of Robert Jenson. This degree took six years, understandably due to the fact that he began teaching only two years into his doctoral program as he became Lecturer in Philosophy of Religion at King's College London in 1969. His dissertation was a study of the doctrine of God in the thought of Charles Harshorne and Karl Barth, which was completed in 1973. Gunton later became an Associate Minister of the Brentwood United Reformed Church in 1975, a position which he held until his passing.

Gunton was appointed Lecturer in Systematic Theology at Kings College in 1980, and in 1984 became Professor of Christian Doctrine, later becoming the Dean of Faculty from 1988-1990. He also served as Head of the Department of Theology & Religious Studies from 1993-97. Gunton founded and directed the Research Institute in Systematic Theology which drew distinguished scholars and many graduate students from around the world. In 1992 he delivered the Bampton Lectures at the University of Oxford[1] and delivered the Warfield Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary in 1993. [2] He also co-founded the International Journal of Systematic Theology with John Webster and Ralph Del Colle in 1999.

Gunton was awarded honorary doctorates by the University of London (1993), the University of Aberdeen (1999), and shortly before his death, the University of Oxford (2003). He was also made a Fellow of King's College. [3]


It has been said that "it is difficult to over-estimate the importance of [Gunton's] contribution to English Theology over the past 25 years. He has published a dozen sole author books and edited and contributed to a further half dozen." [4] Gunton's most influential work was on the doctrines of Creation and the Trinity.

"Gunton's books have been influential internationally. Perhaps his most important book is The One, the Three and the Many (1993). One article in this book, 'God, Creation and the Culture of Modernity', is a profound analysis of the paradoxes and contradictions of Modernity. This book is a majestical survey of the western intellectual tradition and a penetrating analysis of the modern condition." [5]


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Selected publications

Edited works


  1. These lectures were later published as Act and Being: Towards a Theology of the Divine Attributes (SCM Press, 2002; Eerdmans, 2003)
  2. Published as A Brief Theology of Revelation (T&T Clark, 1995; reprint 2005)
  3. Paul Louis Metzger, ed., Trinitarian Soundings in Systematic Theology (T&T Clark, 2005), pp. 1-3
  4. King's announces the 2003 Fellows
  5. Ibid.

See also

External links

Online writings

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