Friday, December 01, 2006
Book Review: Is The Bible Intolerant?
This book is a wonderful and easy to read resource that counters many of the slogans used to deny the truth claims of Christianity or the Bible. Often your garden-variety skeptic will say things like, “the Bible has been changed so many times we can’t trust what we have,” or, “more people have died because of religion than any other reason,” and use such good-sounding slogans to ward off any serious argument. Orr-Ewing’s book does a masterful job of dealing with such claims head-on, and in this way it makes a great read for both Christians and skeptics.
There is more to the book than just anti-sloganeering. Orr-Ewing also deals well in the realms of comparative religions--being especially well versed with Islam and the Qur’an--biblical criticism, and philosophy. For example, the author does a wonderful job of addressing the criticism that Scripture is homophobic. While noting the values inherent in such a charge, she speaks well to the biblical witness on human sexuality. She notes that the biblical view is far from culturally conditioned. The surrounding cultures in the times represented by both the Old and New Testaments were very open with their homosexual, and other sexual, practices. Both Testaments represent a very counter-cultural view for their times, and it just happens to be the case that the biblical view on human sexuality is again deeply counter-cultural. There was nothing culturally conditioned about its view when it was written, and there is no good reason for its view to be altered now that it is again.
This is one of those wonderful books written by a serious theologian that addresses several pertinent issues in a manner accessible to most every reader. I highly recommend this book to any skeptic honestly seeking answers to their questions and to Christians looking for a solid apologetic resource.