JumpIntoTheWord

Bible Engagement Blog


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Pensees and Questions

What will the shape of Bible engagement be in the years to come? Here are some pensees and questions for consideration:

  • Are there imaginative new ways to fuse the dramatic and creative arts with the Word? How can artists who respect the power of truth be encouraged to give creative expression and visual beauty to the Word?
  • We have migrated from Gutenberg to Google. How do we continue to facilitate connections with the Bible so that engagement becomes more than words and images on a screen?
  • Should the Bible be liberated from the constraints of individualism? What new formats might better facilitate communal Bible reading, exploration and reflection?
  • What types of formats, presentation styles or delivery systems of the Scriptures are best suited to communal hermeneutics?
  • How can Bible engagement tied to screen to screen connexity be fused with face to face community?
  • What can or should be done to invite non-Bible readers, both as individuals and in community, to engage with the Bible?
  • How can the profile of the Bible be raised both inside and outside the church?
  • Is there a way to develop online contextualised illustrated display Bibles as public exhibits of how we value the Scriptures?
  • Should we be seeking progressive ways to promote the primacy of the Scriptures? What are the descriptors for this generation that best communicate a high view of the Scriptures?
  • How might hypertext be better used to invite engagement with the Bible? How can we leverge the internet so that more people engage the Bible in ways that result in meaningful encounters with Christ and life transformations?
  • What are the best ways, in today’s context, to invite children and youth to hook up and interact with the Bible so that they ultimately choose to hold a biblical world view?
  • Concerning the Western tendency to compartmentalize and dichotomize: How can we better develop resources to help people engage the Bible with both their heads and their hearts?
  • How can the Bible be shared in real time with suitable symbols and prophetic metaphor?
  • What improvements need to be made with delivery systems so that the Bible is accessed in more multisensory, interactional and user-friendly formats?
  • Would it be helpful to publish a Bible that shows by its formatting what literary genre is primarily being used?
  • How do we teach/educate people to read the Scriptures in context? Is there a way to wean people from manipulating the Bible for selfish or skewed agendas?
  • What are the ways to improve reaching anyone, anywhere, anytime with the Bible?
  • How can we do the above so that favourable conditions are created for divine-human encounters?

What questions or pensees do you have about the shape of Bible engagement in the future?

© Scripture Union Canada 2013


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Open the Book

After several years investigating the connections Canadians do or do not have with the Bible, we’ve discovered the Bible is the most popular least read book! Tragically, while there are three Bibles in the average Canadian home, they’re usually found on a dust covered shelf. Despite the availability and advanced marketing of the Bible, fewer and fewer Canadians are reading the Bible, knowing what it says, and living according to its principles.                                                                                                                       

Even among churched Christians, many never read the Bible from cover to cover. A Bible literacy poll in an Evangelical Toronto church in March 2010 revealed that eighteen percent of the congregation reported reading the Bible once a day, thirty-eight percent read the Bible once a week, twenty-one percent read the Bible once a month, and twenty-three percent said they seldom or never read the Bible.

The fact that the Bible is being treated lightly, ignored, or dismissed, isn’t due to limited selection or accessibility. Among the more than eight-hundred English versions of the Bible there are hundreds of reader friendly formats and more than one-thousand different Bibles that can be purchased online from Amazon.com. There’s even a waterproof version for those who like reading in the shower!

At Scripture Union Canada we’re deeply concerned about the growing disconnection with the Bible. Yet while we’re concerned, we’re optimistic. The decline in Bible engagement means there are more opportunities than before to bring fresh invitations for people to connect with the Bible. So we’re praying for a Bible reading revival – praying that Canadians will open the Book.

© Copyright Scripture Union Canada, 2011