Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Blue Parakeet: Chap 6->Chap 7

Part of the problem between Scot McKnight and me is that he is a gung-ho Christian and I am, shall we say, not. So when I hear the reflections of a man thousands of years old in the struggles of Job, Dr MvKnight hears God. When I hear Paul in of 1 Corinthians furiously trying to work out how early Christians should live, McKnight hears God.

Chapter six of The Blue Parakeet examines the difference between the Bible and God. This is a welcome message that most Christians need to hear. God is revealed through the Bible but the words on the page are not objects of worship. This is good ol' Bibliolatry. Now, if God is so beyond human kenning, can we learn anything of any value from the shadow of himself that He has left between the lines? But that is a discussion for another day.

Chapter seven is getting to the meat of the topic: why do people claim to believe the Bible is the inerrant word of God and yet do not do what it says to do? McKnight makes a useful distinction - one that is starting to come forward in public debate - that having the right believes about God is not the same thing as following Jesus, doing God's work, loving God's commandments. The author's wife called this chapter the "Boring Chapter." I would say that it is the pivotal chapter and I am glad he put it in.

There is a chapter coming up called something like "Living Jesus-ly" that I am curious to read. Perhaps next time.

1 comment:

atimetorend said...

"Part of the problem between Scot McKnight and me is that he is a gung-ho Christian and I am, shall we say, not."

Yeah, me too. Which makes me wonder why you read and blogged the book. For me, I had already left conservative evangelicalism, and a class on the book was offered at a different church than the one my wife and I attended. So we took the class together, which was a great experience. Being in the evangelical environment, both at the (more progressive evangelical) church, and with McKnight's writing, gave my wife a level of security to explore new ideas about the bible. And it also broke the ice for us to be able to talk together about them without nasty confrontation.

So I have good memories of the book, even though I would reach many of the same negative conclusions as you did about the arguments contained within.