The Bible and Same-Sex Relationships

This was the subtitle of a study conference our denomination had 3.5 years ago, hosted at our church: “The Bible and Same-Sex Relationships.” I was one of the plenary speakers at the conference. Although I would word a few things differently now—I’ve learned much since then, and my own perspective has settled—I feel two of …

Continue reading The Bible and Same-Sex Relationships

Advertisements

On Being—and Doing—Church

There are many good New Testament passages one can explore to envision what the church should be and do: Romans 12-15, 1 Corinthians 12-14, and Ephesians 4-5 are all good options, among others. Still, when I think about the church there’s one specific verse that always seems to come to mind first: They devoted themselves …

Continue reading On Being—and Doing—Church

The Bible as Witness to Jesus (1)

Imagine that you’re reading a really good story. It’s the kind of story you hate to put down and you can’t wait to get back to. It’s got an interesting premise, a believable world, compelling characters, and a riveting plot. It’s enlightening and challenging and entertaining and disturbing and refreshing. Now imagine that you’re reading …

Continue reading The Bible as Witness to Jesus (1)

The Bible as Diverse Anthology

A key idea I’ve emphasized here and here is that whatever we mean by Scripture’s divine inspiration, it cannot mean that the biblical writings are somehow not genuinely human writings. As I said earlier: Written in ordinary human languages and idioms, making use of conventional genres, employing scribes, relying on prior sources, edited by individuals and communities, …

Continue reading The Bible as Diverse Anthology

The Bible as Ancient Literature

We often think of the Bible as a single book, but it’s really more like a library of books from the ancient world. Or, perhaps a better way to put it, the Bible is an anthology of ancient literature. I don’t know what comes to mind for you when you think of “literature.” Merriam-Webster defines it as “writings …

Continue reading The Bible as Ancient Literature