See For Yourself: Jennifer Grace Bird
Like many forms of medicine, the Bible can be a tool for healing or harm, depending upon how it is used. Our guest, Jennifer Grace Bird, has written a book to encourage readers to approach the Bible with confidence and care. At every point, she urges readers to "take the Bible into your own hands."
In this episode we discuss her new book, Permission Granted: Take the Bible into Your Own Hands, as well as the story of Dr. Bird's own journey of learning how to best read and understand the Bible.
Bird writes with understanding and care for those who read the Bible in a literal way, because she spent many years as that type of reader. Her book does not condemn that style of reading, but rather invites those who see the text literally into a genuine conversation.
At every step, she expresses confidence that the Bible - and the reader - will benefit from the scrutiny. She encourages the curious with a simple challenge: "Do you believe the Bible can handle your questions? Then start asking!"
The result may make some traditionalists uncomfortable, but Bird is not here to pick a fight. "My intention is not to leave you in the lurch, with your entire faith system challenged," she writes. "My ultimate intention has been to have you look at where you have placed your faith. Is it on the words in the Bible, or on the God the Bible points to?"
We speak frankly about Bird's own faith journey, as well as how she approaches the craft of writing. We'd love to hear what you think of the conversation!
Jennifer Grace Bird is also the author of Abuse, Power, and Fearful Obedience: Reconsidering 1 Peter's Commands to Wives. She teaches at colleges and seminaries in her home of Portland, and around the nation. She is also a frequent speaker at conferences and churches. You can find out more about her and her work at her website.