Monday, March 01, 2010
From The Evangelical Outpost, good thoughts on the need for Biblical literacy:
The lack of understanding that Christian students and adults have concerning the doctrine, narratives, and unity of the scriptures is not merely embarrassing, but also alarming for multiple reasons. The least of these, but one dear to my heart nonetheless, is that much of British and American literature is decontextualized and frankly, lost, without a decent grasp of Biblical themes, characters, and phrases. Why does the narrator of Moby Dick ask to be called “Ishmael”? Why is a painting of David and Bathsheba hanging on Dimmesdale’s wall in The Scarlet Letter? Without some basic biblical literacy, many passages in English literature are left opaque.
A deeper and more pressing concern is that not a lack of understanding of what we believe and why we believe it leads to an inability to articulate these beliefs. This, according to philosopher Charles Taylor, “undermines the possibilities of reality’…religious faith, practice, and commitment can be no more than vaguely real when people cannot talk much about them. Articulacy fosters reality.”
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