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How to Read the Bible in Changing Times: Understanding and Applying God's Word Today Paperback – Bargain Price, August 1, 2011
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From the Back Cover
How can words written thousands of years ago in different times and cultures apply to us today? Why do Christians obey certain commands in the Bible and ignore others? Some say commands to greet one another with a kiss or not to eat pork are merely "cultural" but then insist that commands related to divorce, homosexuality, or the roles of women and men apply for all time. Are we just picking and choosing what we want to obey and what we want to ignore? Or are there consistent principles for interpreting and applying the Bible?
How to Read the Bible in Changing Times shows you how to interpret and apply the Scriptures regardless of time and culture. It develops a heart-of-God approach that provides guidelines to
determine the meaning of the text in its original context
analyze cultural features
discern what the Bible teaches about God, his will, and his purposes
apply the truths discovered to contemporary life situations
If you have ever struggled to see the connection between this ancient document and your world today, you will treasure this insightful book.
"With a keen scholar's mind, a pastor's compassionate heart, and a teacher's clarity, Mark Strauss has penned a much-needed resource for understanding the Bible today. Your study of Scripture will be enriched and enhanced by this valuable book!"--Lee Strobel, editor, The Case for Christ Study Bible
"The books on how to interpret the Bible are many. Some are so technical that their readership is severely limited; others are so popular that their accuracy and depth are sacrificed for easy rhetoric. Mark Strauss weaves his way between these two extremes to give us a book that is careful, understated, and filled with a great deal of good sense."--D. A. Carson, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Mark L. Strauss (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is professor of New Testament at Bethel Seminary. He is the author of several books, including Distorting Scripture? and Four Portraits, One Jesus. He lives in California.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Baker has recently published a popular level book on reading and understanding the Bible. Mark Strauss' How to Read the Bible in Changing Times: Understanding and Applying God's Word Today is helpful in what it sets out to do. This is not an exhaustive text on the science of hermeneutics. It is meant to help the average lay person read their Bible daily by providing the basic skill set necessary.
He calls his approach the "heart of God" method. Rather than focusing on the books of the Bible as literary pieces requiring genre-specific hermeneutics, he builds his method on reading the Bible to know and love God. I find this to be a helpful concept. There is an overarching story to the Bible. It is good for all believers to be reminded of this.
Despite the strength of approach I believer the average lay-person would benefit from reading this text in conjunction with another popular level text that focuses on genre and a historical-grammatical reading (like Fee and Stuart's How to Read the Bible for all its Worth). To borrow the cliche - books like Fee and Stuart's equip believers to focus on the trees. How to Read the Bible in Changing Times provides a helpful and necessary balance by helping us to focus on the forest.Read more ›
Now have read book through ala Heart-Of Mark; next is exegesis, which will take longer - but worth the effort.
Highly recommend book.
Problem: where do you draw the line? What if someone says, "Hey, this belief in Jesus as the Son of God, well, it was simply a cultural expression of first century Israel. We don't really have to believe that. The Bible was just accommodating to people's cultures when it was explaining the "divine" in that way. We shouldn't necessarily assume that God is personal, or a Trinity." How do you answer this question?
The same could be said about commands regarding homosexual behavior, or women teaching in church. Where do you draw the line, and why? Is it all purely arbitrary?
If these are questions that puzzle you, then you want to get this book. It is the very best treatment on the subject, and very well written. I cannot commend it enough. Very, very impressed by how thoroughly Strauss addresses these issues.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Strauss is clear, compelling, and convincing in helping the reader to understand what the Bible is and is not. Read morePublished 11 months ago by James Barnes
A fresh review of critical hermenuetical principles facing rapidly shifting societal values.Published 12 months ago by Steve Long
needed this for a college class and found it very helpful and balancedPublished 20 months ago by Cindy Varieur
Dr. Strauss has an amazing gift for taking complex subject matter and making it easy to understand. He's obviously mastered his area of study but more importantly he's able to... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Sharon Vilarino