In this blog I write about the Bible not as a single volume divided into chapters and verses, but as a collection of individual creative works—that’s the thinking behind the title of my study guide series, Understanding the Books of the Bible.
Most of the posts on this blog are responses to questions I’ve been asked about the Bible—either through the blog itself, or else in person, by email, through Facebook, and so on. I always say, “There’s no such thing as a bad question about the Bible.” That’s why this blog is called Good Question.
Any question I’ve been asked by someone else appears in bold type at the start of a post. In a few other posts, I share my own ongoing reflections about the Bible, and those begin in regular type. Either way, I write about what the Bible is and how it is supposed to guide the lives of followers of Jesus when we understand it as a collection of books, not as a compendium of chapters and verses.
Let me tell you a little bit about myself. I’m a writer, biblical scholar, and former pastor. I served local churches for nearly twenty years and then was a volunteer campus staff worker with Graduate InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at Michigan State University. I was a consulting editor to the International Bible Society (now Biblica) for The Books of the Bible, an edition of the Scriptures that presents the biblical books according to their natural literary outlines, without chapters and verses. (My study guide series is keyed to that format.) I’ve written a book called After Chapters and Verses: Engaging the Bible in the Coming Generations to explain how we can use the Bible, without chapters and verses, for reading, studying, preaching, and teaching. I was one of the translators for The Voice Bible.
I have another blog, called Endless Mercies, that tells the story of God’s faithfulness to my wife Priscilla and me during her courageous 4-year battle with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). I have recently expanded this blog, by readers’ request, to include stories of our courtship and other adventures (more of these coming in the future!) and of God’s faithfulness to me in my bereavement.
I have an A.B. from Harvard in English and American Literature and Language, a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Gordon-Conwell, and a Ph.D. in the History of Christian Life and Thought, with a minor concentration in Bible, from Boston College, in the joint program with Andover Newton Theological School. I’ve published articles on the literary structures of biblical books in journals such as New Testament Studies, Novum Testamentum, and The Journal for the Study of the Old Testament. I’ve also written articles for The High Calling of Our Daily Work and Bible Study Magazine.
I hope you enjoy this blog, and if you have any questions about the Bible, please use the “ask a question” page to send them to me. (The time it takes me to respond will depend on the volume of questions received.) I also welcome comments on individual posts. (Comments may be edited for length, tone, and content.) Thanks!