Speak To Our Condition

“We are frequently advised to read the Bible with our own personal needs in mind, and to look for answers to our own private questions.  That is good, as far as it goes…  But better still is the advice to study the Bible objectively, … without regard, first of all, to our own subjective needs.  Let the great passages fix themselves in our memory.  Let them stay there permanently, like bright beacons, launching their powerful shafts of light upon life’s problems — our own and everyone’s — as they illumine, now one, now another dark area of human life.  Following such a method, we discover that the Bible does ‘speak to our condition’ and meet our needs, not just occasionally or when some emergency arises, but continually.”
… Frederick C. Grant (1891-1974)


Something Quite Different

I like the phrase Lewis uses: “except for those who go to it for something quite different.” That is powerful.

“In most parts of the Bible, everything is implicitly or explicitly introduced with ‘Thus saith the Lord’.  It is… not merely a sacred book but a book so remorselessly and continuously sacred that it does not invite — it excludes or repels — the merely aesthetic approach.  You can read it as literature only by a tour de force…  It demands incessantly to be taken on its own terms: it will not continue to give literary delight very long, except to those who go to it for something quite different.  I predict that it will in the future be read, as it always has been read, almost exclusively by Christians.”
… C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), They Asked for a Paper

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