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There are all sorts of good things to say about a number of chapters in ...
on 18 November 2014
I hardly expected this work to be a conservative exposition of what the Bible is, but I was also left surprised at the brief comment on orthodox Christian understanding of what the Bible is. At several points, I found myself surprised by Riches' over-genearlisations about the Christian world, while at the same time stressing the deep divide between denominations. I was, for example, shocked at his suggestions that ministers will attempt to interpret scripture in accordance with modern-day social norms. This may be the way of liberal vicars, but this is hardly the stuff of the shepherds which pastor most Christian flocks in the world: sincere ministry is concerned with an exposition of what God is saying through the scriptures. To mold this for people's 'itching ears' is deplorable, and yet Riches seems to commend the practice. There are all sorts of good things to say about a number of chapters in the book: his chapter on the Bible and the arts, for example, was a worthwhile read. I just wished that, even as an objective academic author, he had spent more time observing that many Christians believe the Bible to be God's divinely inspired word, and that this means treating it not like any other book or historical document.