I have been talking about Pathways into the Bible. I’ve mentioned several including memorizing scriptures and reading the Bible in conjunction with reading the news. I will provide a full list of Bible pathways on this blog when the preaching series is concluded on February.
Today, I suggest the Bible reader invite experts into the conversation. The operating assumption is that the Bible is being read. Along with it, read commentary. There is the inspirational type of writing, books that act as extended sermons, by authors like Max Lucado. There is critical-historical writing by authors like Scot McKnight, Craig Evans, and Luke Timothy Johnson. Note that works of this type are sometimes technical, for academic reading. Authors like Walter Brueggemann and N.T. Wright offer theological interpretations of the Bible. Alister McGrath and Douglas Groothuis are examples of authors who write apologetics, leaning heavily on the scriptures. Gabe Lyons, Andy Crouch, and other similar writers deal with current topics and refer to the Bible throughout their works.
I go on listing authors. The point is there is a lot of good literature from men and women who unveil the deep truths of scripture. In the course of reading, the Bible reader will encounter authors with whom he does not agree. Excellent. When I disagree with an author, especially concerning the Bible, I have to clarify my thoughts. I need to try to know the material so I can be confident in my opinion. Occasionally, I come across poorly written books. I just close them and move on to better material.
Read commentary as a regular part of your reading of scripture. Your views will be enlarged, your understanding deepened, your mind quickened, and your wit sharpened.