Sunday, 11 April 2010

What Would Be Your Definition of the Bible In One Sentence?

How would you answer the following question in one sentence?

What is the bible?

In my time I have heard things like:

It's God's Word
It's a hand book for life.
Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth

The first one is true, but it uses in house language that can lead to confusion. Moreover, Muslims use the same title for the Qur'an.

The second two, whilst not wrong in themselves, leave you with the notion that it's all about you - something the Pharisees would enjoy reading.

So what do we say? Is there a definition that is exclusively Christian that doesn't tie us up in knots of clauses and sub clauses?

Here's my starter for 10:

The Bible is God the Father's testimony about the excellence of his Son, given to us through the Holy Spirit.

From Genesis 1 to Revelation 22, it's all about Jesus.

Any comments or advances?

PS Thanks Dave for putting me onto this. :-)


Dave K said...

Very good start.

But nothing about salvation? If the Bible isn't about God's saving act I don't know what it is.

Revelation comes through redemption I would say.

Richard Walker said...

I see and welcome your point Dave, something a bit more explicit wouldn't go amiss.

That said, I think salvation is implied in the word excellence because the excellence of a person is not just who they are but what they do, in this case redemption.

Moreover, even a person refuses to believe the gospel, that doesn't detract from the truth of the Father's testimony or the excellence of the Son it just means they miss out on the full experience of his excellence.

Trying to keep it punchy and encapsulating the full scope is really hard! :-)

Smitch said...

Well said, Richard. I especially like how your definition confronts our drift towards autonomy.

P.S. thanks for including my post to Ron Frost's blog in "Eating out"

Dave K said...

I appreciate its very difficult. I've been thinking what I would say over the last few days, and I've ended up with a very long sentence.

Interestingly, and coincidentally, I read the following a few days ago:

"The Bible is the book of the acts of God. Making use of a title taken from the Bible itself, it might be called 'The Book of the Wars of the LORD' (Num 21:14)"

Now that's not something you hear very often!

Richard Walker said...

Indeed. I like it! :-) Hollywood eat your heart out!

dave bish said...
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