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Measuring Bible Engagement

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So how is Bible engagement measured? Those who define Bible engagement as something cognitive or transactional find it relatively easy to quantitatively measure the activity because the variables can be isolated and studied. For example, one of the tools developed by this writer as a simple gauge of Bible literacy is the Measure of reading/connecting with the Bible in the table below.

Measure of reading/connecting with the Bible

-4 Is unaware of the Bible
-3 Is aware of the Bible
-2 Has access to a portion of the Bible
-1 Has access to the Bible
0 Owns a Bible or a portion of the Bible
+1 Never or rarely reads/connects with the Bible
+2 Reads/connects with the Bible once a month or more
+3 Reads/connects with the Bible once a week or more
+4 Reads/connects with the Bible once a day or more

Quantitative measures of Bible engagement, while useful, have limitations because they do not and cannot measure the more complex nature of Bible engagement, elements like ‘meaningful encounters with Jesus Christ’ and lives being ‘progressively transformed in Him.’

So how are the more qualitative elements of Bible engagement measured? By definition such qualities are difficult to determine, but clearly confirmation of Bible engagement is seen in people’s lives when they are connected with, coming alive to, are tied to, are investing in, being submitted to, are reliant on, are receiving from, and acting in line with the One of whom the Bible speaks, Jesus Christ.

Measuring Bible engagement. Ultimately, meaningful connections with the Bible are occurring when:

–          people are seen to be imitating Christ’s humility (cf. Philippians 2:2)

–          when our stories are interwoven and subject to His Story (cf. Micah 6:8)

–          when we are producing a crop – a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown (cf. Matthew 13:8), i.e., receiving, hearing and understanding God’s word (cf. Matthew 13:23).

© Copyright Scripture Union Canada, 2012

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