Almost half of the Bible is written in narrative, or story, form.
That’s why it’s always been such a popular book. It’s not JUST the ten commandments: “Thou shalt… Thou shalt not…” That would be horrible! No… It’s an amazing story book!
One of the reasons for that is because God told the people to pass it on to their kids. Well, way before any of these kids could read they knew the Bible stories because they’d heard them all growing up. Kind of sounds like Sunday school, huh?
Stories are easy to pass on, and they’re fun to read. They’re WAY more enjoyable than lists to memorize or boring strings of facts.
Narrative, or story form, is the genre that most of your Bible is written in. Genesis, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, 1 and 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Daniel, Jonah, and Haggai are almost ALL narrative. Others like Exodus, Numbers, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Isaiah, and Job have a lot of narrative in them, and a lot of the New Testament is narrative (the Gospels, Acts).
Bro. Sam last Monday night preached an amazing narrative from Ezekiel. Remember that? Title: “The method sure is strange, but the message is clear.” Very bizarre story… with one central idea. How about that? Bro. Sam even said in his sermon, “If we could take everything God is saying and boil it down to one sentence…” and then he stated his CIT.
Narrative opens you up to a LOT of wrong application. It gets used the wrong way a lot, and tonight I want to provided some help on how to read and interpret narratives a little better. The following is from the book How to Read the Bible for all its Worth. I don’t necessarily recommend the book, but this section was great. Read on:
PRINCIPLES FOR INTERPRETING NARRATIVES
- An Old Testament narrative usually does not directly teach a doctrine.
- An Old Testament narrative usually illustrates a doctrine or doctrines taught propositionally elsewhere.
- Narratives record what happened – not necessarily what should have happened or what ought to happen every time. Therefore, not every narrative has an individual identifiable moral application.
- What people di in narratives is not necessarily a good example for us. Frequently, it is just the opposite.
- Most of the characters in Old Testament narratives are far from perfect – as are their actions as well.
- We are not always told at the end of a narrative whether what happened was good or bad. We are expected to be able to judge this on the basis of what God has taught us directly and categorically elsewhere in Scripture.
- All narratives are selective and incomplete. Not all the relevant details are always given (cf. John 21:25). What does appear in the narrative is everything that the inspired author thought important for us to know.
- Narratives are not written to answer all our theological questions. They have particular, specific, limited purposes and deal with certain issues, leaving others to be dealt with elsewhere in other ways.
- Narratives may teach either explicitly (be clearly stating something) or implicitly (by clearly implying something without actually stating it.)
- In the final analysis, God is the hero of all biblical narratives.
DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME BEGINS – SUNDAY, MARCH 11
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CAMP REGISTRATION – SUNDAY, MARCH 11
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