I know that I’m supposed to bring you finished thoughts. But I’m in the middle of so many partial thoughts that I need to go with those. For example, I have this sense right now that the Bible is way more well written than I ever realized.
I know. For some of you, since it’s written by God, of course it is well written. And I know that for others of you, if by “well-written” I mean confusing, or misogynist, or hopelessly dated, then of course it is well-written. (And if those two sentences surprise you, meet my friends.)
But here’s what I mean.
1. I’m reading Paul Through Mediterranean Eyes: Cultural Studies in 1 Corinthians. Kenneth Bailey identifies a writing structure evident in this letter that is rooted in Old Testament prophetic writing. What looks almost random in this letter may make more sense.
2. I’ve been reading the first chapter of Mark (We looked at it a couple weeks ago). In that chapter, the word “immediately” shows up 10 times. As I kept looking, I saw that the Greek word translated “immediately” looks a lot like the Greek word translated “straight” in a quote from Isaiah. I’m wondering whether there is a bit of wordplay that runs through this whole book, which uses the word for “immediately” 47 times. That’s more than any other book.
3. Some day I’ll afford Stories with Intent: A Comprehensive Guide to the Parables of Jesus which lays out the parables with great richness. And since so many of us like the parables best of all the Bible, that’s a pretty cool thing.
4. I talked last week about Nehemiah’s part in “a thousand years of prayer.” Nehemiah has an awareness of the writers and teachers and leaders that came before that keeps intriguing me.
No application today. Just thinking.