bible illiteracy

bible illiteracy

I’ve been amazed at the great response to the issue of Bible illiteracy. It reminds me of Isaiah 29: “11 For you this whole vision is nothing but words sealed in a scroll. And if you give the scroll to someone who can read, and say, ‘Read this, please,’ they will answer, ‘I can’t; it is sealed.’ 12 Or if you give the scroll to someone who cannot read, and say, ‘Read this, please,’ they will answer, ‘I don’t know how to read.’”

And this is immediately before the saying Jesus quotes: “13 The Lord says: ‘These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.’”

This is not just a knowledge problem, it is a spiritual problem: a matter of rebellion against the Lord. People may not realize it, but they have rearranged their priorities so that God is no longer first.

The hidden blessing is that when people hear a Bible story, they seldom react with boredom, thinking, “Yeah, yeah. Blah, blah, blah! I’ve heard this a dozen times before.” Instead, because the story is new to them, or only vaguely familiar, it has the potential of making a greater impact on their hearts and lives.

Overcoming Bible illiteracy has to start with me. How much time do I spend reading and studying God’s Word? Do I share what I’ve learned? How committed am I to making progress in what I know and, what is infinitely more important, what I apply to my own spiritual growth?

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Steve has been a Bible teacher for over 30 years. He has written many articles, more than 20 e-books, and several study guides, most recently, Overcoming: Guide to Understanding the Book of Revelation. His website,, encourages all people to go deeper in their understanding of the Word of God, the Bible, and to become authentic, New Testament Christians who serve a risen Lord.

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