Keith F. Nickle was born in 1933 at Keokuk, Iowa. He studied at Texas A. & M. College from 1951-53 and then transferred to the University of Texas in Austin where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1955. In 1958 he was awarded the Bachelor of Divinity degree after three years' study at the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. He was ordained in 1958 and served as minister of the First Presbyterian Church, Navasota, Texas, until 1960 when he left to begin his doctoral examination in 1963. While in Basel, he studied under Professors Cullmann, Karl Barth and Walther Eichrodt.