Posted by: alisonwalley | 12 July 2009

Are all Bible reading notes the same?

I wanted to find a snappier title that this, but ‘grace notes’ or other such fancy titles didn’t work. Ah well. At least this one shows what I’m on about.

Are all Bible reading notes alike? Well… The answer has to be ‘no’, but ‘yes’. They should all be trying to do the same thing – help us, readers, to engage with God’s word, and in so doing, meet with God and grow in our knowledge of him. I suppose that’s part of the ‘yes’.

Now here’s the real ‘no’. Before you start reading your Bible with any set of notes, ask yourself, ‘Who produces these?’ Are they people who really believe that the Bible is the word of God? Do they believe that the Bible is really trustworthy and inspired by God? Do they write as if it’s really important we take it seriously and apply its truths to our lives?

I’ve said this in a previous blog, but it is essential that writers of Bible reading notes are Christ-centred. So, check out who produces the notes first.

But here’s another part of the ‘no’. Bible notes have different target audiences. Sounds obvious? But even allowing for the fact that notes are produced for different age groups, there are certainly plenty of notes just for adults. And that’s as it should be, because different people (or the same people at different times of their lives) need different kinds of help in reading the Bible.

So for the next few blogs I am going to look at some Bible notes in a bit more depth. I’ll start with the ones Scripture Union produces, because they’ve been going longest and have three different notes for adults. Then I hope to go on to other notes. Of course, I say that’s what I’m going to do, but who knows? I might find I need to interrupt this ‘series’ to write about something else!

Still, the point is to encourage you to read God’s word, so whatever means you use to help you do that – keep reading!


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