Fear of the Bible

One of the questions I see frequently from professional Christians is about good curriculum to use with particular groups. Like a broken record, my reply is always, “Why not just use the Bible?”

When my son was 5, he did the children’s message in morning worship. He told the story of Jonah. One of the comments I heard after the service was, “Your son knows the Bible better than I do!” As a dad, I was proud of my son. As a pastor, I was broken hearted that a five year old knew the Bible better than someone who had been in the church over 50 years.

If we want people to know the Bible, we need to help them read the Bible. A curriculum might have a use, but too often they seem to be a buffer between the people and the Bible. By insisting they use a curriculum we’re telling them, in effect, “The Bible is too difficult and complicated for you, a mere lay person, to understand. Also, there are parts of the Bible that are dangerous and in appropriate; we need to be sure you’re shielded from those parts and just given the nice parts.”

Let people read the Bible! Even if they might get it wrong, let them read! Model good reading habits for them, rather than shielding them from this dangerous book.

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