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View Full Version : Frederick W. Danker, RIP



DavidR
02-06-2012, 03:32 PM
I've learned of the death of Frederick W. Danker, from whose work we have all benefited so mightily, especially in the BDAG lexicon (for those who don't know, he's the "D" in BDAG). Dr. Danker was 91. A bit more information at http://zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com/2012/02/02/sad-news-the-death-of-frederick-danker/.

MBushell
02-06-2012, 06:35 PM
I only met Professor Danker one time - at ETS/SBL shortly after BDAG was added to BibleWorks. He seemed very gracious and happy. He told me that he was very thankful that the Lord had permitted him to live long enough to finish his work on this masterful work of lexicography. I am thankful as well for that act of mercy to all of us.
Mike Bushell
BibleWorks

Yaku Lee
02-06-2012, 11:21 PM
I have never met Professor Danker. All the same, I am deeply grateful for his great work.
I want to say: Thank you.

dribex
02-09-2012, 02:18 PM
I posted the following on my blog last week.

Frederick Danker was a Lutheran scholar who was best known for his work on the second and third editions of the great Walter Bauer NT Greek Lexicon. Those three editions were known to generations of Greek students by their acronyms, BAG, BAGD and BDAG (B=Bauer; A=Arndt; G=Gingrich; D=Danker). He also published commentaries on Luke and 2Corinthians as well as the invaluable Multipurpose Tools for Bible Study. But it was that gigantic and indispensable lexicon that will forever etch Fred Danker’s name in the memory of multitudes of pastors and scholars and students who labor on the Greek of the NT (and of the Apostolic Fathers!). I treasure my Lynda’s copy of this classic.


I could review his life and achievements, but the coming obituaries will do that. It is a shame that there exists no entry for this giant in Wikipedia (one has now been started!). Let me rather offer some reflections on a personal interview that I had with him in January, 2003, just a couple of years after the publication of that monumental 3rd edition of A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (BDAG).


My son, Jonathan, drove me to Danker’s apartment that Saturday, and he was even able to help the great man with a computer issue! The apartment was modest and lined floor to ceiling with - guess what? BOOKS! I asked Danker about his own education at Concordia Seminary, where William Arndt (that “A” above) was his professor. He told me of a course where they translated the entire NT in two semesters! He described also his Ph.D. in Classics at the University of Chicago and his return to teach at Concordia, where he stayed until the seminary divided in the seventies when he went to Seminex and then to the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. He then whispered to me that he had another project in the works. When his 400 page Concise Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament appeared in 2009, I recalled that “can you keep a secret?” remark!


Here’s a juicy tidbit from that interview for which I will always be grateful. I asked Professor Danker if he could confirm the rumor circulating about him “on the street.” That of course peaked his interest, and he responded: “Oh, what is that?” I told him that there was a rumor that he had worked continuously on the 3rd edition of the lexicon for twelve hours each day, six days a week, for ten years. I should not have been surprised that his humble response was simply, “Well, we did take vacations.”


It is a memory that I will always cherish and I tell my students about it often. Frederick W Danker was a giant of a scholar, the likes of which this Christian world has rarely seen. But I close with something else that I learned about the man that day. He apologized that he had to end the interview because he wanted to pay a pastoral visit in the hospital to an ailing colleague.


May it be, Lord, that I can be a pastor-scholar like Frederick W. Danker! Requiescat in pace!


(For another tribute from my friend, Rod Decker, see his post at http://bit.ly/xoCy2w)

ISalzman
02-09-2012, 10:32 PM
I posted the following on my blog last week.

Frederick Danker was a Lutheran scholar who was best known for his work on the second and third editions of the great Walter Bauer NT Greek Lexicon. Those three editions were known to generations of Greek students by their acronyms, BAG, BAGD and BDAG (B=Bauer; A=Arndt; G=Gingrich; D=Danker). He also published commentaries on Luke and 2Corinthians as well as the invaluable Multipurpose Tools for Bible Study. But it was that gigantic and indispensable lexicon that will forever etch Fred Danker’s name in the memory of multitudes of pastors and scholars and students who labor on the Greek of the NT (and of the Apostolic Fathers!). I treasure my Lynda’s copy of this classic.


I could review his life and achievements, but the coming obituaries will do that. It is a shame that there exists no entry for this giant in Wikipedia (one has now been started!). Let me rather offer some reflections on a personal interview that I had with him in January, 2003, just a couple of years after the publication of that monumental 3rd edition of A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (BDAG).


My son, Jonathan, drove me to Danker’s apartment that Saturday, and he was even able to help the great man with a computer issue! The apartment was modest and lined floor to ceiling with - guess what? BOOKS! I asked Danker about his own education at Concordia Seminary, where William Arndt (that “A” above) was his professor. He told me of a course where they translated the entire NT in two semesters! He described also his Ph.D. in Classics at the University of Chicago and his return to teach at Concordia, where he stayed until the seminary divided in the seventies when he went to Seminex and then to the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. He then whispered to me that he had another project in the works. When his 400 page Concise Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament appeared in 2009, I recalled that “can you keep a secret?” remark!


Here’s a juicy tidbit from that interview for which I will always be grateful. I asked Professor Danker if he could confirm the rumor circulating about him “on the street.” That of course peaked his interest, and he responded: “Oh, what is that?” I told him that there was a rumor that he had worked continuously on the 3rd edition of the lexicon for twelve hours each day, six days a week, for ten years. I should not have been surprised that his humble response was simply, “Well, we did take vacations.”


It is a memory that I will always cherish and I tell my students about it often. Frederick W Danker was a giant of a scholar, the likes of which this Christian world has rarely seen. But I close with something else that I learned about the man that day. He apologized that he had to end the interview because he wanted to pay a pastoral visit in the hospital to an ailing colleague.


May it be, Lord, that I can be a pastor-scholar like Frederick W. Danker! Requiescat in pace!


(For another tribute from my friend, Rod Decker, see his post at http://bit.ly/xoCy2w)


Wow. Thanks for the great tribute! I was very blessed just reading it. We really have to celebrate the giants of the faith and their contributions and legacy to the body of the Messiah. There are a lot of faithful servants in the church that go unthanked.

Irving