Jason posted the following as a start to the conversation:
Marv’s guide to reading Genesis:
1. Open you Bible to your selected passage in Genesis.
2. Leave it there. Go to the bathroom look in the mirror. Look at your nose. See how plain it is.
3. Keeping that mindset, hurry back to your Bible open to Genesis, now read. Ahhh. There it is.
I like Jason, a great deal, so when I write what I am about to write, it is not against him. He wanted a conversation – and I urge you to join in over on his blog. With that, however –
This are my two main responses:
I think that Marv is trying to read the text like the mirror – he wants to see himself and his theological thoughts in it.
I say this not to cause offense, but I think that Marv’s analysis of reading Scripture is actually unScriptural. He is enforcing the idea that Scripture must be read with the eyes of men. A white, Anglo-Saxon, post-industrial, post-Enlightenment male didn’t write this. We have to read the text how they read it, how God inspired it. To force Marv’s literalism on the text is to wonder where the inspiration of God really comes in at. Here and now or then for now?
I know that we have a tendency to follow in the steps of the Enlightenment and read everything scientifically literal, cold and wooden, but to do so to a text written by a people as lively, colorful and as warm as the ancient Israelites does the text as much injustice as those who would use it for monetary gain. When you desire only to read from the text what you first read into the text, you will not actually read the text.
Sorry, Marv, but reading the text as if it was as plain as the nose on your face only gets you that far into the text – to the bare tip of your nose.