How to Treat the Bible

The quote from Gregory C. Jenks comes from an article on the Progressive Christianity website, written back in 2011, “Taking the Bible Seriously but Not Literally.” Click through to read it. Neither the Bible nor God is well served by any tactics that seek to protect the Bible from scrutiny. We must, therefore, resist any [Read More...]

Deifying the Bible

In an article about 6 popular Christian sayings that aren’t true, David Schell points out the problems with saying that the Bible is the “Word of God.” He writes: Neither the Bible, nor the Nicene Creed, nor the Apostle’s Creed says this. 2 Timothy 3:16 says all scripture is inspired by God, but “inspired” ≠ [Read More...]

The Big Lie

In a blog comment, Brooke Lester made the comment that I’ve shared here: It’s never really about a “literal” interpretation, but about controlling interpretation. In every interview, every Facebook comment, every conversation, you have to take the word “literally” away from them. That their interpretation is “literal” is the Big Lie that makes all the little lies possible. This image [Read More...]

Certainty is Doubt

I love teaching the first year seminar class “Faith, Doubt, and Reason.” Reading Clifford and Tillich, the Bible and Hume, all in one semester makes for great conversations. In Monday’s class we talked about the meaning of faith. Clifford famously discussed the moral implications of accepting claims on insufficient evidence. When Tillich was brought into the [Read More...]

Inerrancy’s Broken Promise

Fred Clark has a great post on Biblical inerrancy, and the fact that it cannot deliver what its proponents claim that it can. He writes: It doesn’t work. That’s the fatal flaw of biblical inerrancy — it just plain doesn’t work. I don’t just mean that it’s a poor hermeneutic that encourages self-deception and projection and [Read More...]

Fools for Christ

Believing in inerrancy doesn’t make you a fool for Christ anymore than believing the world was flat contra Galileo made the Catholic church fools for Christ. Resisting injustice, sacrificing your life for others, showing solidarity with the oppressed, selling your goods and embracing poverty – these are the sorts of actions that make one a [Read More...]

The Bible We Actually Have

The quote from Chris Keith is taken from his contribution to Pete Enns’ series about Biblical scholars’ “aha” moments. In almost but not entirely unrelated news, see Hemant Mehta’s post about a Kickstarter project to make a literally indestructible Bible. [Read more...]

That Doesn’t Settle It

The quote is from a post of mine, “People Wrote It, You Believe Them, That Settles…Nothing.“ [Read more...]

Sacrificing Accuracy to Preserve the Appearance of Inerrancy

Kevin Brown shared a long list of issues with the NIV translation of the Bible which were compiled on the blog Is That In The Bible? It includes this quote from N. T. Wright: When the New International Version was published in 1980, I was one of those who hailed it with delight. I believed [Read More...]

Look Up From The Bible

The above quote from Eric Reitan comes from a post he wrote offering five Christian reasons to doubt Biblical inerrancy. That post in turn was responding to the Patheos multi-blog conversation on progressive Christianity and the Bible. Click through to explore both in more detail. The post by Derek Flood on an inspired but not [Read More...]

Biblical Literalism’s Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

David Hayward’s cartoon above illustrates the reason why I consider Biblical literalism to be an attack on Christianity, rather than an expression of faithfulness to it. No matter how much they insist otherwise, no one actually takes the Bible literally – not even all the bits that are “clearly” non-poetic. But that doesn’t stop preachers [Read More...]


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