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Monday, March 12, 2012

What do we do with the Bible?

For some, the Bible speaks with authority.  The text reveals truths established through a conversation and an inspiration that finds its source in the deep truth of God.  It is our task, in this formation, to understand and respond with obedience to the Word of God.

For some, the Bible speaks with authenticity.  The text reveals truths embodied in the stories and poetry and history of humankind.  It is our task to understand, to listen closely for the way that God speaks through the text, and to respond with lives congruent to the Word of God revealed in this way.

For others of us, the Bible speaks in response to our authenticity, our purposeful inquiry, our authority.  The text awaits our coming to it with curiosity and with a willingness to imagine that the lives we live already are lives of integrity.  We choose to deal seriously with serious matters and we expect to encounter these serious things in the stories, the poetry, and the historical record in the Bible.  

It is this third perspective I'm thinking about today.  How do we come to the text with authenticity?

It becomes our task to speak to the Bible, with the trust that all which is good in us will be affirmed and all that we should confess will be acknowledged.  We strive to approach the Bible without fakery and with open minds.  We expect the Bible to challenge us to deeper living and to transform us through this back-and-forth between our lives and the Biblical witness, the story.  And our hope is that through this deep honesty, we practice the openness that allows for God to speak as well, speaking freshly into the lives we live today.

Exodus 20: 1-17

Then God spoke all these words: I am the Lord your God, ...

from Psalm 19

The law of God is perfect,
 reviving the soul;
the decrees of God are sure,
 making wise the simple;

From 1 Corinthians 1:18-25

For God's foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God's weakness is stronger than human strength.

Peace and Blessing,