Monday, May 11, 2015

Book Review: How To Enjoy Reading Your Bible Keith Ferrin @bethany_house @KeithFerrin #ChristianBlogger

We often approach Bible study with failure already in mind.  We deal with it as a "have to" instead of I "get to".  The difference between the two makes all the difference.  The Bible can be an intimidating text, but we should approach it like the precious gift that it is.  The Creator of the universe has revealed himself to us, and the Bible is how he has chosen to do that.

Keith Ferrin wants to ignite a love for the Bible among all of God's people.  In this book, he offers 10 tips that should add to a believers enjoyment of their Bible.  Much of what he is trying to communicate can come across as common sense, but when we set down to do the work, we often let common sense exit the scene.

I really enjoyed his down to earth writing style.  He is open and honest about his own struggles, and this allows his readers to face their own failings.  Bible literacy today is depressing.  After the struggles of the Reformation to bring the scripture to the people, it is sad that so many have such a lacking knowledge of what the Bible actually says.  The message of his book is very timely.  If we as a people, hope to have an awakening within our churches, then Bible knowledge is a great place to start.

Psalm 1 says that a person is blessed who meditates on God's word.  We need to bring that type of attention to scriptures.  This is a great book to do that.  Some of the tips the author offers is to take in the "whole movie".  Too often we see Bible verses divorced from the rest of the story.  This approach is great for making posters or plaques, but is severely lacking in making authentic disciples.  Each of the books of the Bible were written as a whole.  We loose so much when we pull verses out of the larger story.

One of his other tips is to read aloud.  If you have a scatter brain like I do, then this is a tip you can really understand.  It will be so much harder to contemplate what's for dinner, if you are hearing the word aloud as well as thinking through each word.  When I read silently I find it very difficult to stay on task, and remember what I have read.

American's can be entirely too independent.  This is a problem for Bible study also.  The author also encourages believers to not read alone.  Individual reading is indispensable for spiritual development, but to stop there is a mistake.  Whether in a small group or with another trusted friend, we were made to live our faith in community.  While our group can hold us accountable, we can also gain insight through discussion of our readings.

Along with a great book to help the believer engage with his Bible, the author has also developed a great resource for a small group.  Each of the chapters is followed by discussion questions to drive home the message of the tip.  This would be a great book to walk through with a small group.  It is written in such a straight forward way, that it would be a great resource to use with new believers.

This is a really good book.  It has a very timely message and it is written in an entertaining way.  I really believe that if a person were to walk through the tips in this book, then it would completely change their Bible study.  I would recommend this book for the individual, but I think that it would be even better if used in a small group study.

I was provided a complimentary copy of this title through the Bethany House Blogger Review program to provide this review.

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