How are we to read and understand the Bible? In the next few posts, by breaking down the various genres that make up the sixty-six books, we will unpack some clear and concise principles in reading the Scriptures as a whole.
- Reading the Old Testament
- Reading the Law
- Reading History
- Reading Wisdom literature
- Reading the Prophets
- Reading the New Testament
- Reading the Gospels
- Reading Acts
- Reading the Epistles
- Reading Revelation
John Piper, in his book, A Peculiar Glory, makes this statement about the Scriptures. “The Bible, consisting of the sixty six books of the Old and New Testaments, is the infallible Word of God, verbally inspired by God, and without error in the original manuscripts, and this can be known with a well-grounded confidence because the peculiar glory of God shines in and through these Scriptures.
This also implies that the Scriptures are the supreme and final authority in testing all claims about what is true and right and beautiful. In matters not explicitly expressed by the Bible, it implies that what is true and right and beautiful is to be assessed by criteria consistent with the teachings of Scripture. All of this implies that the Bible has final authority over every area of our lives and that we should, therefore, try to bring all our thinking and feeling and acting into line with what the Bible teaches.
I do not write these words lightly. They make a staggering claim. Breathtaking. If they are not true, they are outrageous. The Bible is not the private charter of a faith community among other faith communities. It is a total claim on the whole world. God, the creator, owner, and governor of the world, has spoken. That is what it means to be God. And to our astonishment, His way of speaking with unique, infallible authority in the twenty-first century is through a book. One book. Not many. That is the breathtaking declaration of the Christian Scriptures.”
Engage your sanctified imagination and your holy curiosity!