All About the Books

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Meghan Trainor is all about that bass, but The Theology Nerd is all about the books. The more you hang around here, the more quickly you will truly understand the love we have for them. Think of the huge gift that God blessed us with in the written word. Books can educate, empower, or just entertain; they hold great power. Think of all that we have because of books. God used the written form to preserve His Word for us. In fact, if it were not for the book we call the Bible, there would be no Gospel to be believed. In God’s sovereignty, He chose the written form to preserve His Gospel. I was saved because God used books to open my mind to the reality of eternal life.

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Can you imagine a world without books? What would exist and what would not exist? Without the written word, there would not be any way to recall wonderful recipes that we have enjoyed. Cooking itself would not be what it is today. Think about the many ways that we entertain ourselves. I find a good movie to be enjoyable; you might even call that one of my passions. (Now, what I classify as a good movie might be open to debate. Just ask my wife!) Some of my favorites are “The Godfather,” “Gone With the Wind,” “The Matrix,” and any Star Trek movie. I love themes relating to science fiction, action, comedic romance, and sometimes even a zombie apocalypse. None of that would be possible if it were not for the written word; a book – or at least a script – underlies every entertaining portrayal. Even music has been based upon a version of writing; musical notation has preserved beautiful sounds for us century after century. Imagine Bach, Beethoven, or Mozart without the written page. Books are instrumental in our perception of reality. A pastor years ago in a very urban setting stated that reading is power, that if people wanted to change the world they would focus on reading and writing. Books are tools of empowerment.

Reading has always been a vital part of my life. I read; I collect books; I read about reading and collecting books. I often joke about my books being my friends and my highlighters being soldiers in the battle for knowledge. Today, books come in all different forms. Electronic media has revolutionized how we read. This is both awesome and lamentable at the same time, but that is for another post. Books have been an identity for me since early childhood. My parents always read to me, especially at bedtime, and I learned to love the Bible during those times. I also learned about imagination through stories of Dr. Seuss, “The Wizard of Oz,” and similar childhood fiction. While Mom’s idea of a bedtime story focused usually on a mother’s love for her child, Dad would often read from Poe. Late at night as a young boy, I learned the mystery and intrigue of “The Raven,” “The Telltale Heart,” “The Cask of Amontillado,” and other treasures. Books taught me the power of critical thinking. They passed on to me a passion for the quest of knowledge. Imagination, entertainment, facts, fiction, theology, philosophy, great literature, Scripture, hobbies, business, current events – books speak to it all. We would not be who we are without books.

What books do I value the most? Obviously, the Bible is the very top of that list. I hope that goes without saying. We will talk more in detail about the Bible itself in the future. What translations are best? What value do Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic hold? How should I interpret the Bible? What other books have shaped my thinking and life? Over the coming weeks and months, we will talk about some of those volumes. One thing will become clear, all books are not created equal. Some are read and then dismissed while others continue to shape us even years after they have been read.

Other than the Bible, what is your favorite book? Please comment below.

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