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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Bible First

I like – no make that love – books.  Bit of an understatement.  I took a personality/strengths assessment a while back and my top two strengths came back literary and music.  If you were to walk into my office right now you would see about 1000+ books and four different instruments.  I am an aggressively interactive reader.  I am constantly looking for snippets or illustrations I can use in these books and journals.  I read a lot; typically with a pen, pencil, or highlighter in hand and my journal nearby.  I read four periodicals regularly, two theological journals, and two business journals.

We live in a time when published information, like this blog, books, white papers, monographs, etc. abound.  We have access to two thousand years of commentaries on the Bible.  This year alone will probably see in excess of 320,000 new books published, a great many of those on Bible related topics.  Additionally we have access to study Bibles and Bible study programs with vast resources.  My laptop has over 800 books in my Bible program.  We could literally spend all of our lives reading about the Bible and not make a dent in the published literature.

Therein lays a challenge.

Reading about the Bible, what other men think the Bible says, is not the same as reading the Bible.  Obvious?  Probably.  But we – I – need to be reminded of that daily.  It is the Bible that is living and active and shaper than any two edged sword (Hebrews 4:12).  It is the Bible that is inspired by God and profitable for instruction, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:15 – 16).  Books about the Bible can be helpful but to the extent that they become our primary input, they are damaging.

There is much more to say here…  But this is getting long, so we will finish this tomorrow…

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