December 7, 2006

Reading the Bible

Category: Bible :: Permalink

The Jollyblogger has an excellent entry about reading the Bible and the barriers that keep us from hearing what it actually says.  At the risk of letting you think you don’t need to read the whole entry, here’s part of it, a quotation from Jaroslav Pelikan:

To invoke a Kierkegaardesque figure of speech, the beauty of the language of the Bible can be like a set of dentist’s instruments neatly laid out on a table and hanging on a wall, intriguing in their technological complexity and with their stainless steel highly polished — until they set to work on the job for which they were originally designed. Then all of a sudden my reaction changes from “How shiny and beautiful they are!” to “Get that damned thing out of my mouth!”

Once I begin to read it anew, perhaps in the freshness of a new translation, it stops speaking in cliches and begins to address me directly. Many people who want nothing to do with organized religion claim to be able to read the Bible at home for themselves. But it is difficult to resist the suspicion that in fact many of them do not read it very much. For if they did, the “sticker shock” of what it actually says would lead them to find most of what it says even more strange than the world of synagogue or church.

Posted by John Barach @ 7:28 pm | Discuss (0)

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