Ryken was born in Iowa on May 17, 1942. He graduated from Central College in Iowa with his bachelor's degree in the same year he married his wife Mary. In 1968 he earned his Ph.D from the University of Oregon and then began on the faculty in the English department at Wheaton College. Ryken is not only an educator; he is also an author and an editor of books such as The Word of God in English and The Complete Literary Guide to the Bible. Ryken continues to write and teach from Illinois when he's not traveling to England for research and pleasure.
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