I believe that the Bible is God’s Word. And I believe that reading the Bible is one of the most important things we can do. In fact, I produce a radio program in Spanish by that very name: “Read the Bible” (Lea La Biblia).
One book that helped me shape my approach to Bible reading was How To Read The Bible For All Its Worth by Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart. The authors take general principles that are applicable to the reading of any book and apply them to the Bible.
One important literary principle the authors apply to the field of Bible study is the idea of genre and its importance. You don’t read a book of poetry the same way you read a business journal. You don’t read the obituaries the same way you read the comics. In the same way, students of the Bible need to understand the difference between narrative and prophecy, poetry and epistles.
The authors help readers to understand different literary devices, know how to analyze context, and gain a basic understanding of translation. All of these principles help us to be better stewards in handling the text that has been entrusted to us.
Originally published in 1981, the book was updated in 2003. I am familiar with the older version, but am confident that reading either version will help any student of the Bible grow in their ability to read and understand God’s Word.
– Tim Archer, Herald of Truth Ministries