This is somewhat a surface review of this amazing book by Scot McKnight! Thanks to Scot and Zondervan for making it possible for me to get an advanced copy to read and blog about. The book is so good that I will be getting a copy soon!
About the book; it is definitely a deconstruction of how one reads the bible. Upon reading the book I notice that there are a lot of passages in the bible that are somewhat off key with our basic systematic theology or neatly structured doctrines. There are passages in what McKnight calls ‘blue parakeet’; these are passages that make us uncomfortable when we read them. He advices us, not to tame the bible but let the bible challenge us. McKnight proposes a three step pattern to read the bible; story, listening, discerning. The pattern helps us to get back on track with treating the bible as more of God communicating with us and we in the mode of having a relationship with the bible as we read, listen, struggle through, get nudged, (namely all our emotions and thinking and actions interact with the God of the bible).
McKnight is telling us again that the bible is not a rule book or what I sometimes hear from people; BasicInstructions Before Leaving Earth. McKnight goes on and help us to see how this pattern works as he writes about women and ministry. Dealing controversial text and mining his way through what the bible is actually communicating to us.
My personal observation; McKnight is one of those authors who constantly challenges us to rethink. And what is more, he came up with a book on rethinking how we read the bible. I love the metaphor of the Blue Parakeet. I also see that McKnight tell us that the Holy Spirit has a role in helping us read the bible (this we often forget, being bombarded by methods). My only ‘disappointment’ for now is that I wish the book had more case studies rather than just one-women and ministry. Maybe in the revised edition McKnight will expand the book. I hope he does. To me the book was not thick enough. Well I guess that is McKnight’s way of telling us ‘Go and read the bible and apply what you have read’. Overall the book is amazing but a tad too short. But regardless, I strongly recommend the book to anyone interested in finding out ways to read the bible.