Reading Isaiah as Christian Scripture

Ellen Davis on reading the Bible confessionally

Posted in Hermeneutics, Life of Fatih, Reading the Bible as Scripture by Bacho on April 2, 2011

Ellen Davis reports a time when she was a part of a discussion with scholars representing a broad spectrum of Christian traditions.  One question on the table, “Identify the kinds of theological inquiry that should be pursued and funded in order to provide solid intellectual grounding for this stage of the church’s life.”  In other words, what is the biggest need that the Church faces today?  Davis’ answer is stunningly simple, “To learn again to read and teach the Bible confessionally.”  What does that mean?  “The need for the church to learn afresh to acknowledge the Bible as the functional center of its life, so that in all our conversations, deliberations, arguments, and programs, we are continually reoriented to the demands and the promises of the Scripture.  Reading the Bible confessionally means recognizing it as a word that is indispensable if we are to view the world realistically and hopefully.  We acknowledge it as a divine word that is uniquely powerful to interpret our experience.  But more, we allow ourselves to be moved by it, trusting it is the one reliable guide to a life that is not, in the last analysis, desperate.  Reading the Bible confessionally means reading it as the church’s Scripture.”  [from The Art of Reading Scripture, 9-10]


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