The Bible as Story

As a follow up to my last post about doctrine and the rightness of being – I want to post here that somewhere I read a comment “the Bible is full of propositional truth” – and this got me thinking.  Yes, but not really.  Well, sort of.  Let me explain. 

I don’t think the right way to look as the Scriptures is that of propositional truth but that of story.  I haven’t read any of Kevin Vanhoozer’s work but I do have his book “Is there meaning in this Text?” (which I need to get to)- anyways, he has another book titled “The Drama of Doctrine.”  It sounds interesting but I think a possible subtitle of the Bible might be “The Drama (Story) of Redemption.” 

This is not to say that there is no propositional truth in the Bible but to say that I don’t think it’s front and center as to what the Bible is about – it is about the story of redemption – God’s redemptive purposes in this world.

So, if the Bible is best seen as Story, and not just any story mind you but HIS/STORY – of which you and I are all a part – how does it work?  Well, there is the beginning.  That’s when God created the world.  There is the end.  That’s when we all go to live with God eternally in the new world.  And there is the climaxthe Cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead!  That is the point to which the story works – Jesus rising from the dead – Resurrection – through which we have Redemption.  But that is not all – while there is an end, I think that is still in the future (today, tomorrow, who knows?). 

I have come to be a bit of a believer in the notion that endings of the Gospel of Mark and the Book of Luke/Acts – were written in such a way as to leave part of the story openopen to fulfillment

Open to fulfillment?  Yup. 

By who?  By you and me and all who are followers of Jesus Christ – through the power of the Holy Spirit. 

In part, he left this world, and on Pentecost, through the sending of the Holy Spirit, he passed the baton on to the Apostles and to the rest of us – the sending of the Holy Spirit was a charismatic empowerment for us to do what he has called us to do, which is to carry on the great story of redemption (and reconciliation)! 

So what are we to fulfill?  Why, The Great Commission of course!  (which in part is the ministry of redemption/reconciliation).

And here is the best part: Each and every one of us has a part to play in The Great Drama of Redemption!  Not just Pastors and Bible teachers and other various special spiritual people.  How about that?  “No Disciple Left Behind!”  Lol!  In fact, we are “the rest of the story.”   We live out the story of redemption and reconciliation in and through the daily lives we live as followers of Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. 

So, what about those propositional truths?  I think they are perhaps better seen as principles for us to live by as we go about fulfilling our part of the story!

I think too, if we do a really good job living out our part of the story (living in faithful witness to Jesus) – others are gonna wanna join in! 

What say you? 


2 responses to “The Bible as Story

  1. This is exactly how R.T. France approaches the Gospels (as story) in his two important commentaries:The Gospel of Mark: New International Commentary on the Greek Testament and The Gospel of Matthew (New International Commentary on the New Testament).

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