and after a brief intermission…

Posted on May 17, 2010

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So I started this journey through the Bible awhile back.

And then I hit a brick wall.

But I’m back, in my quest to read through the Bible.

Here is what I wrote last April when I started this whole thing. Now back to Exodus.

The Bible. Now there’s a
book. Written by dozens of writers over hundreds of years. Originally penned in
four different languages, the 66 different “books” of the Bible all combine to
tell a story.

Or so the theologians would have
you believe.

For me, it’s not quite so clear.

See I have read the Bible for
years. I have read it all the way through once, but a lot of the parts of the Bible I have read a bunch. Especially the “greatest hits” parts. You know, the Christmas part at
Christmas, the Easter part at Easter, the happy parts when I needed to feel happy…well….I guess that is mostly it.

I am a Christian and believe in God but I have never really spent much time with the Bible. Just cherry picking stuff when I felt guilty or nervous or mad at God or when I was in a hotel and it was a few minutes til Sports Center started.

There have even been lots of times when I would try to read the whole thing but eventually I would get to the “Thou shalt” parts and I would just bog down. But, and this is unsolicited confession here, instead of just giving up and putting the thing down once
and for all, I turned to the last page to see how it ended.

That’s right.

I cheated.

Reading the Bible.

I admit it. I cheated when I read
the Bible. I skipped all the boring stuff and went straight to the last page
and had read the ending. I knew how the thing ended so why should I slog
through the centuries of exposition and genealogies full of the good, the bad,
and the rest of us stuck somewhere in the middle.

But I digress…

So as I thought about my approach to reading the Bible, I realized what I was doing.

I was cherry picking Scripture.

And frankly it was the cherry picking Scripture part that made me think. Seems that lots of people like to find parts of the Bible that back up what they want you to think. There are those that pick out the “God wants you to prosper” verses and look only at those. There are others who look at the “don’t do this” or “don’t do that” parts and seem to only be concerned with those parts.

It seemed to me that a lot of people took stuff out of context.

But how could I really tell since I hadn’t tried to let the Bible give itself its own context.

So I decided I would just jump in and plow right through.

The whole thing.

Straight through.

Laws.  Commandments. Poetry. Murder. Mayhem,
Redemption. Tragedy. Desperation. Hope. Desecration. Annihilation. Birth.
Death. Rape. Religion. Redundancy. And that’s just what I saw when I peeked into the first few pages.

So I decided I would try again to
take a run through the whole thing – beginning to end – alpha to omega, so to
speak – page one to page number, well it depends on the translation. In my
case, it is page 1 to page 1943.

But this time instead of reading it
for interpretation or theology or translation or any of those things I am
probably not the best person to do, I decided that I would read it
“experientially.” Not just reading it to read it, using this blog to keep up with all the
thoughts that popped into my head.

I will not write something about every verse (and maybe not even every chapter)because I am pretty sure that I do not have nearly enough thoughts to do that. So I will just offer whatever pops in my head as I go through the Bible.

Trying to make sure that I do not get God, or His Bible, out of context.

Weird huh….

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