In our Sunday School class we are watching a video lecture by Mark Moore (www.markmoore.org). He is a very indepth instructor and he's receiving mixed reviews by our class members. Some see him as a bit pompous, espousing that the Bible is a historical document valid only for the specific readers to whom it was intended. Others believe he is opening up new vistas of Bible study. Still others are totally lost by his concepts and instructions.
Between this study and some other non-fiction books I'm reading (one in particular, Clutter-free Christianity by Robert Jeffress, which will be reviewed soon at www.hisreadinglist.blogspot.com) I'm getting a totally different perspective on the Bible.
Yes, I believe it is specifically meaningful to the intended readers for whom it was written. And I believe we can learn about the character of God through it's message, thereby understanding how God will act in our current culture.
But more than that, I realize that this book is more incredible that I'd ever imagined. Think of the people who are nearly illiterate. The Bible stories they hear from others and in church are often paraphrased, yet they touch hearts and move mountains. Some of the most faithful are those who cannot comprehend parallel texts and original Greek meanings.
Then there are Biblical scholars who spend their whole lives unearthing new understanding of history and culture. Their lives have been transformed and they spend decades researching the most specific facts and developing convincing arguments to help others believe.
Most of us fall somewhere in between. What other book can you think of that meets the needs of every single reader, regardless of his intellectual desire for complexity? It is the most simple and the most complex book in history -- all at the same time! It offers everything anyone could want or need.
Some days I need to read a short passage and hear God's voice reminding me of his love or admonishing me about my actions. Other days I need to seek and find His truth through investigation -- to discover his character as if I were on a treasure hunt. He offers both!
How cool is that?