Joel runs in what most would consider a more liberal, more mainline doctrinal discussion than I do, although more often than not we can find common ground on most subjects. That’s one of the great things about having a network of bloggers to interact with on doctrinal and exegetical grounds. The diversity of opinion and position helps us look at our own views and the views of others more carefully.
Anyway, Joel’s blog is considerably busier than mine, and he has a number of contributors who write posts for him. He probably gets as many hits in an afternoon as I do in a month.
This week, one of his contributors, Leslie Keeney, wrote an excellent piece on the false interpretations that arise from reading the Scriptures as if they are all about your personal relationship with God. It resonated with something I am working on concerning the church, and I thought you might benefit from it.
Here’s an excerpt:
Suddenly, it dawned on me that one of the benefits of reading the Bible primarily as a narrative is that it automatically reduces the self-centeredness inherent in the “instruction manual” metaphor. If the Bible is God’s story, then the purpose of reading it is to become intimate with God and how He works, not how He can fix my life. No longer does every passage have to have a “practical” application that I can “use.” If the Bible is a story about God, it is not all about me. (Why It’s Not All About Me or You, Leslie Keeney)
Like I said, Joel and I don’t always see eye-to-eye so this is not a wholesale recommendation of everything on his blog; but I thought this was insightful.