(This Lent, my Dad, Rev. Hollis Hiscock, and I are co-blogging! You can find our posts every Monday at my Blog and Dad’s Blog. Visit, comment, share, and most importantly, feel free to join us in the journey.)
“Don’t get hung up on the actual words in the Bible;
get hung up on the messages conveyed
by the words of the Bible.”
“Treat the Bible like any other book,
and you will discover it’s not like any other book.”
The church encourages us to read the Bible daily, and extra during Lent.
The Book of Alternative Services (BAS) - the contemporary prayer book of the Anglican Church of Canada - invites us to have a holy Lent “by reading and meditating on the word of God.”
This means more than just speed reading the text. It entails thinking about the passage, searching for its message, and then applying it to our daily living. Some may recall having to memorize the Sunday prayer or collect (BAS page 391) which assured us that the Bible was “written for our learning,” and we need to “hear, read, mark, learn and inwardly digest” Holy Scriptures.
For Christians, the four Gospels are the foundation of faith. It describes the life of Jesus Christ - his birth, youth and adult years, culminating in his death, resurrection and ascension. It also contains the teachings of Jesus – describing what God is like, and providing principles upon which people should model their lives mirroring the Master’s example.
The other New Testament writings, mostly letters, attempt to clarify the teachings of Jesus and answer practical questions posed by adherents of the newly found faith. The writers, recognizing the persecution being unleashed towards the Christians, encouraged them to remain faithful and stay the course. God has not abandoned them and in the final analysis, they will receive their eternal reward.
The Old Testament rounds out the triad or trinity of scriptures. It gives an account of our human development and illustrates how religion, culture, politics and history are often interwoven in the lives of people – sometimes too much. Yet to understand where we are now, we need to delve into the past to decipher how God acts and reacts with humans.
We are suggesting that you read John’s Gospel during Lent - maybe reading the last chapters first in order to better understand what Jesus did, and how his life and teaching reflected why he did what he did.
As always, we encourage your thoughts
in the comment space below.