The Bible: Lens or Blindfold?

David Hayward posted another thought-provoking cartoon:

There are so many points that one can make in relation to this. The problem of looking for God in the Bible, when by definition any reality worthy of the designation “God” is not to be found in a book. The fact that so many atheists are convinced that there is no God because ancient authors of the Bible held beliefs about both God and the world that are unpersuasive. The fact that focusing on what authoritative texts say is depicted time and time again within the Bible as interfering with people heeding God’s call.

But most importantly, the Bible points to God, a God that is to be known and experienced not on its pages, or at least not there alone, but beyond its pages, in experience, in reality.

If the Bible itself is what you see, then you are doing something wrong. The Bible can only serve as a lens or as a blindfold.

Metacriticism of Biblical Scholarship at #AARSBL on Saturday Afternoon
Bordering Others: Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity #aarsbl15 Sunday Afternoon Session
Christians in Name Only
Traditions and Religious Worlds of Late Antiquity - #AARSBL15 Monday Afternoon
  • Marcello Jun de Oliveira

    Some atheists are convinced that there is no God because no theist author has yet proposed beliefs about both God and the world that are persuasive.

    • James F. McGrath

      Are theist views of God the only ones worth considering?

      • Nick Gotts

        All the others I’ve come across are so mushy there’s really nothing to consider.

    • Carl F Gilmore

      Bible or no Bible – or any other book for that matter, the most persuasive and convincing “arguments” (for or against belief) will be the ways in which those who claim the name Christian live their beliefs and show why their basis for belief is worth sharing in …