Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today  -     By: Adam Hamilton
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Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today

HarperCollins / 2014 / Hardcover

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In Making Sense of the Bible, Adam Hamilton invites us into an honest conversation about the Bible. The book begins with foundational questions such as, How and when was the Bible written? Who decided which books made it into the scriptures and why? How literally must we read it? And, Is the Bible ever wrong?

From there, Hamilton considers the real questions people frequently ask that continue to divide Christians and denominations alike, including:
  • Were Adam and Eve real people?
  • Why is God so violent in the Old Testament?
  • Why would Paul command women to "keep silent in the church"?
  • Is Jesus the only way to salvation?
  • How does God view homosexual people?
  • Is the Book of Revelation a guide to the End Times?
In approachable and inviting language, Hamilton addresses these often misunderstood biblical themes leading readers to a deeper appreciation of the Bible so that we might hear God speak through it and find its words to be life-changing and life-giving.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: HarperCollins
Publication Date: 2014
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 X 0.89 (inches)
ISBN: 006223496X
ISBN-13: 9780062234964
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

In Making Sense of the Bible, Adam Hamilton invites us into an honest conversation about the Bible. The book begins with foundational questions such as, How and when was the Bible written? Who decided which books made it into the scriptures and why? How literally must we read it? And, Is the Bible ever wrong?

From there, Hamilton considers the real questions people frequently ask that continue to divide Christians and denominations alike, including:

  • Were Adam and Eve real people?
  • Why is God so violent in the Old Testament?
  • Why would Paul command women to "keep silent in the church"?
  • Is Jesus the only way to salvation?
  • How does God view homosexual people?
  • Is the Book of Revelation a guide to the End Times?

In approachable and inviting language, Hamilton addresses these often misunderstood biblical themes leading readers to a deeper appreciation of the Bible so that we might hear God speak through it and find its words to be life-changing and life-giving.

Author Bio

Adam Hamilton is the founding pastor of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City. Started in 1990 with four people, the church has grown to become the largest United Methodist Church in the United States with over 18,000 members. The church is well known for connecting with agnostics, skeptics, and spiritual seekers. In 2012, it was recognized as the most influential mainline church in America, and Hamilton was asked by the White House to deliver the sermon at the Obama inaugural prayer service. Hamilton, whose theological training includes an undergraduate degree from Oral Roberts University and a graduate degree from Southern Methodist University where he was honored for his work in social ethics, is the author of nineteen books. He has been married to his wife, LaVon, for thirty-one years and has two adult daughters.

Editorial Reviews

“When I think about how many people have been turned off to the Christian faith because of how they mis-read and mis-understand the Bible, I can only say, ‘Thank you Jesus for this book!’ It’s going to help a lot of people.”
“Wondrously accessible, Hamilton combines good scholarship with a light touch and exhibits his wise, generous pastoral heart. Hamilton does not let us forget that he bears witness to the gospel and the result is a discussion that permits readers to think again and faithfully about the Bible.”
“Clear, straightforward, lucid, faithful, helpful. Highly recommended.”
“This is an honest, relevant, and captivating book. Hamilton asks taboo questions and refuses cliché answers. He invites you to join him on a quest for truth, and even if you don’t arrive at the same destination, you will sure enjoy the ride.”
“Acting as friend and guide to those who seek to read the Bible intelligently and with spiritual insight, Hamilton walks readers through the pitfalls of fundamentalism and dry scholarship, opening up both the Bible’s profound humanity and its wisdom for living.”
“I can think of no one more adept at bringing out the beauty and authority of scripture while also shedding light on the Bible’s most controversial teachings than Adam Hamilton. This is a must read for anyone who is looking for a fuller understanding of the Bible.”
“If you hope there’s a better way to read, live by, and value the Bible, Hamilton has written the book that will help you-and people you know and love. It’s understandable. It’s honest. It’s wise. And it’s so, so needed.”
This isn’t your grandfather’s revivalism. Equal parts an evangelical return to the Bible as the foundation of Protestant Christianity—and a scholarly, inclusive approach to understanding scripture that draws on themes familiar to readers of Brian D. McLaren, Rob Bell and Marcus Borg. Most importantly, for the millions of men and women who have been avoiding churches for years, this is a faithful and intelligent orientation to the Bible.
“Helpful, pastoral, and hopeful....this book is a gift to the broader church at a time when we are not simply wrestling with so-called controversial issues, but perhaps discerning a fresh word from God on how to live as faithful Christ-followers in the twenty-first century.”

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Displaying items 1-5 of 5
Page 1 of 1
  1. 1 Stars Out Of 5
    "Making Sense of the Bible" -- from one point of view
    January 4, 2015
    johngracemark
    Quality: 2
    Value: 1
    Meets Expectations: 1
    The book is divided into two sections, first discussing the Bible itself and its content, then offering answers to some of the more well-known "Frequently Asked Questions." The author's "15-minute surveys" of the Old and New Testament adequately expressed much of the thought behind the major themes of the Bible. At the end of the first section, the author attempts to address the big questions regarding inspiration and inerrancy, neither of which was satisfying.

    In the second section of the book, he leads off with a chapter entitled "Science, The Bible, and Creation Stories." He accuses those he claims believe the Bible uncritically of a biased approach to this topic, though he falls right into the same trap by believing "science" uncritically. "Science says it, I believe it, and that settles it." The author was not so blatant with his bias in the first section of the book, but halfway into the first chapter of the second section he made his viewpoint very clear.

    At times, he contradicted himself in the same sentence. One moment, he says "well, you can't believe this bit from the Bible;" in the next he is saying "here is something to stake your life on." His faith seems to be in his own judgment: "I can pick and choose what makes me feel good. I believe it; that settles it."

    This book is a particularly obvious illustration of the saying that "nothing is totally worthless; it can always serve as a bad example."

    To learn what the Bible teaches, read it. To learn about the Bible, you'll be much better served reading "Evidence that Demands a Verdict."
  2. 1 Stars Out Of 5
    Making Nonsense of the Bible
    October 16, 2014
    Ev
    Quality: 1
    Value: 1
    Meets Expectations: 1
    After reading this book Hamilton tells you that you cannot trust the OTor the NT.You can't trust what Paul has said.and we can't trust what Jesus has said.It sounds like Hamilton is teaching right from the Jesus Seminar of 1985.He is also teaching situational ethics.Leading you to believe that a handful scriptures as no longer binding so same-sex marriages can be officiated in the church.This book should be renamed Making Nonsense of the Bible.
  3. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    nourishment
    August 22, 2014
    midge
    This book is an asset to anyone who is serious about understanding the Bible. It helps one think outside the box.

    I, personally have been validated by the information in the book.
  4. Napa, CA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Seminary in a One Volume.
    May 19, 2014
    Loren Haas
    Napa, CA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Adam Hamilton has distilled much of a seminary education into one readable volume. In the first section he covers the Old and New Testament including the history of who, when and how they were written. His analysis of the meaning of and problems with the two testaments is insightful.

    In the second section he covers topics raised by the scripture. Science and the Bible, God's Violence in the Old Testament, Women Need not Apply, and Homosexuality and the Bible and many more are all chapter headings.

    One of Hamilton's goals is to bring a seminary level discussion of the bible to lay people. Pastors tend serve up a more bland and less challenging version to their congregants. They play it safe, but consequently misrepresent the full depth and meaning of scripture.

    If you want to go along with the crowd, then do not read this book. If, however, you want to take a high view of the bible and understand it for all that it is worth I highly recommend "Making Sense of the Bible..."
  5. Atlanta, GA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Fantastic Overview of the Bible!
    April 12, 2014
    Bible Study Fan
    Atlanta, GA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This is the perfect book for people who say that they do not know how to read the Bible or that they do not understand the Bible. In the first part of the book, Rev. Hamilton gives an overview of the history, organization and reasons for the books of the Old and New Testament. In the second part, he discusses the Bible's "challenging passages." The first part is great for "nonbelievers or new Christians." The second part is informative for all. My Bible study group is starting a study of Revelations, and I shared the chapter on Revelations with them as a great "road map" as we start our study. I am ordering copies of this book for my young adult children (who do not read the Bible enough) for Easter.
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