“The Challenge Of Diversity: The Witness Of Paul And The Gospels”

The heart of Professor Rhoads ideas here is essentially to develop and strengthen a heightened awareness to the multifaceted nature of the Bible and its authors.  The central message to Christianity will always glean through from its diverse beginnings.  The diversity he speaks of as "Social locations" using examples such as where the authors of the Gospels lived and so forth, teaches us the melting pot of creativity and interpretation as well as maybe jars us with some of its ambiguity: How can we trust or understand the implementation of oral tradition and the practice of pseudonymous authorship, the great gaps of time, circumstantial history and so on…? For instance, he mentions how many, if not all of the New Testament authors lived several years after the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and were not eyewitnesses.  It is truly foreign to our sense, perspective of writing or recording important stories of history, philosophy and Faith.  Essentially, Professor Rhoads hopes that we would use this knowledge, awareness of the Bible's diversity to develop our own rich, creative tapestry of understanding scripture.

What I can genuinely appreciate from this essay is how it speaks to our need to be creative while we learn and grow in faith with the Bible.  Our God, being creator of all things, gave us the gift of expressing creativity as well.  We learn through our humanity our faults and failings as well as truly our gifts whether they be reasoning, insight, interpretation, skepticism, etc.  To be able to grasp the heart of the message of the Bible we need to see how we could use all of these gifts or strengthen the ones we may not have enough clarity yet to use.  I have always been personally intrigued with what the orig ...
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