One joy of studying the Word rather than giving it a cursory reading is all the truth that starts to pop. Read through anything quickly and little will stand out. Read things slowly and thoughtfully, and you’ll experience reading in a whole new way. One thing slowing down forces us to do is to ask questions about the Bible. What does a word mean? Why did the writer use that sentence order or repeat that phrase several times? Where else from Scripture might they be drawing from? If we pause to chew on one word, one promise, one truth, or one phrase, we’re much more likely to be gripped by it and do something with it.
As our church continues to read the book of Acts, the second chapter highlights the day of Pentecost. The author of Acts, Luke, assumes his readers are familiar with the holy-day/holiday. He, therefore, doesn’t explicitly tease out what Jesus sending the Holy Spirit on his people that day (of all days) means. If you skip over Pentecost you miss a lot of color within the text’s story that the wording itself doesn’t always supply. Here are four blogs surveying some of the meaning behind that day and what’s going on in Acts 2. Continue reading What’s Pentecost About?
Author vs Audience Questions
When we read the Bible or any other book, we bring our own questions. This isn’t always bad, but it can cause us to read books with a filter whereby we pass over material we don’t consider relevant to our question. In fact, we might be so “locked in” to our own thinking and concerns that we miss what the author intentionally builds into his story or letter. We don’t totally disregard our questions, but we read more slowly and more carefully in an attempt to let the author’s concerns shine through.