Father Len explains what the Bible is, where it came from, why it matters and how to use it.
Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom
- The Bible is a collection of books of sacred stories that span thousands of years.
- The Bible is not a rule book. There are rules in the Bible, but they only make sense in the context of the stories in which they are contained.
- The stories in the Bible give meaning to why we’re here and help us understand the purpose of our lives.
- Bible stories are stories of a community written by a community explaining sacred reality from many viewpoints, different viewpoints, and even opposing viewpoints.
- The wisdom contained in the “Book of Proverbs” is innocent and sweet like a young teenage girl.
- The “Book of Ecclesiastes” critiques everything in the “Book of Proverbs.” Imagine a 40-year-old guy with a cigarette in one hand and a tumbler of whiskey in the other sitting down to share his perspective on life with the innocent and sweet teenage girl.
- The Bible tests our ideas about life and reveals truth from many different angles. It offers the wisdom of generations and generations.
- Wisdom grows over time. Wisdom at one part of your life may not work at another. Your truth at age 18 might be true, but it’s a limited truth. Your truth at 50 is another type of truth and it might be true. When you get to 90, you’ll see the world much differently than you did at 18 or 50.
- The Bible uses many genres to reveal truth. It contains large amounts of poetry, historical facts, myths, and fiction. All are sacred stories.
- The Bible is inspired by God and directed by God, but written by human beings for human beings.
- The Bible should be used as stories. Complete stories. Isolating and quoting individual chapters and verses from Bible stories can be problematic. Even though the words are correct, their meaning can easily be misunderstood or misinterpreted when removed from the context of the overall story and its meaning.
- The Bible disagrees with itself at certain points, and it’s meant to, because then you have to change your thinking.
- If you’re going to study the Bible, read it regularly in a community with a community’s perspective. Read it slow. Let it challenge you.