Bible for All Its Worth essay

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This point-of-view makes sense. Stuart and Fee have already suggested that the point of Biblical interpretation is not to look for a novel or unique interpretation, but to really try to understand the point of the passages being studied. Therefore, their idea that people should feel free to consult commentaries, so that they can understand how other people have interpreted the texts, is a good one. Moreover, they suggest that people own multiple commentaries, with their ownership of each commentary geared toward the specific books being studied. Again, this is an excellent suggestion. Much like reading multiple versions of the Bible, reading multiple commentaries on specific books is likely to stimulate intelligent analysis of the books in question.

Conclusion

Stuart and Fee do a very good job of helping guide people on how one should approach the Bible. In fact, their book would be helpful for novices as well as for people who have a history of biblical scholarship. In addition, while Stuart and Fee encourage the reader to find a good commentary on the different books of the Bible, much of what they have written about different parts of the Bible serves as a mini-commentary. For example, they come to extratextual conclusions about Luke's purpose in writing Acts, and those conclusions can only be viewed as commentary. Therefore, this book provides a good jumping off point for the reader, not only with directions on how to critically examine the Bible, but also with commentary by the authors on what conclusions they have come to after a critical examination.

However, there are people who are going to take issue with Stuart and Fee's suggestions. Many modern Christians insist that the Bible is a stand-alone book, which should be read without any outside assistance. In fact, some even go so far as to suggest that outside assistance somehow taints one's experience of the Bible. This point-of-view, which is dismissed by Stuart and Fee, seems ludicrous when one considers that most people who are being introduced to the Bible have no working knowledge of the history of Biblical times. How can one begin to understand the different stories in the Bible without a working knowledge of the surrounding socio-political climate? The reality is that people who are convinced that they do not need any extratextual assistance in reading the Bible are unlikely to pick up a book with the title How to Read the Bible for All its Worth. For the readers who acknowledge that the Bible can be a contradictory and confusing book, as well as an illuminating one, the book provides good guidelines for interpretation.

Bibliography

Stuart, Douglas and Gordon D. Fee. How to Read the Bible for All its Worth. (Grand

Rapids: Zondervan, 2003).

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