The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Reading the Bible Like Jesus Did

Following Jesus in How to Read the Bible.docx (56.6 KB) I’ve attached my five page best effort to set forth how I perceive the nature of the Bible, and what this suggests about how we need to interpret it in a way that follows Jesus and the way that he read it. I welcome your own questions and critiques! Bob

Thanks Bob, your efforts make for some interesting reading. I rather think that your list would give some inerrentests a head ache! I have come to think somewhat as you have illustrated. The inconsistencies seem to add weight to the notion tha God is not trying to offer a total blue print for life to slavishly follow, rather Jesus is saying come and follow me. To some he may even say sell everything! Thus the Bible changes from being a text book for life to being a text book for love. :wink:

True enough. Jesus would say things like: “you have heard it said____, but I say to you____.

Most supposed “contradictory” texts can be better understood in terms of “comparative” (or contrasting) texts with the given context supplying their more immediate meaning. It is always a sure-fire way to confusion in lifting a text out of context to give you a pretext… and there’s nothing quite like wooden literalism to give you this.

Chris and Davo,

Thanks for your responses. I did know I was apt to create a headache for wooden literalists and inerrantists. Yet I felt it was necessary to risk that, since it seemed to me that they aren’t apt to appreciate the nature of Biblical literature, and thus embrace how radical Jesus’ solution is, unless they distressingly can recognize that we can not just keep citing texts as if every Biblical item is equally correct and binding upon our lives.

Thanks for that essay, Bob, I will find it useful to refer to now and again. I think you’ve put the emphasis in exactly the right spot.