How the Bible Can Change Your Life

How the Bible Can Change Your Life
Answers to the Ten Most Common Questions About the Bible
(Christian Focus Publications, 2018)

WHO: Josh Moody, senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, Illinois.

HE SAYS: “For Christians who believe the Bible, there is a concerning gap between our profession and our practice.”

THE BIG IDEA: This book addresses the question, “Why should I read the Bible?”

In 10 chapters the author tackles 10 questions many people have about the Word of God. Beginning with “Is the Bible True?” and “Is the Bible Authoritative?” through “Does the Bible Make You Stupid?” and “How Do You Read the Bible?” this handy guidebook presents thoughtful arguments that are Scripturally based.

“The Bible can and does change our lives.”

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Why do you think some churches aren’t digging into the Word like they used to?

For the last hundred-plus years, Western culture has been told by the intellectual powers-that-be that the Bible is not historically reliable, and indeed in its pristine uninterpreted state has fueled immoral activities like racism and other kinds of authoritarian oppression. Is it any wonder that some churches have moved away from a full-throated confidence in the Bible?

It has gotten worse recently with the dissemination of misinformation through social media that to the unwary suggests that these questions about the Bible are all settled. For instance, some of the articles on Wikipedia about the authority are deeply biased towards a skeptical approach to the Bible. All is certainly not lost; at Cambridge University (my alma mater), there are now as many conservative scholars of the Bible at the elite scholarly level as liberal scholars. The truth is that there is more evidence to trust the Bible today than there ever has been.

So one reason is this growing and undiminishing critical attacks on the Bible, which are fanned into flame by various communicators across the internet. The other reason is that the models of what it means to use the Bible in church do not always encourage people to take the Bible seriously. On the one hand, there are people who seem to think that unless a sermon is at least somewhat boring it can’t be orthodox. And then there are other people who use the Bible like—in Dick Lucas’ immortal phrase—a a drunk uses a lamppost, more for support than for illumination. We need to let the text of the Bible speak for itself; and we need to communicate it with passion and clarity. There are models of people doing this, but so many people have been exposed to boring or bad models of preaching that it is not surprising that they look to other ways of doing “church.”

What inspired you to write this book?

I write books when I sense a bit of a fire within about the subject. This fire grew in me as I observed two patterns: 1) people not reading the Bible in their personal lives with the degree of regularity that I had assumed; 2) churches not having the Bible read or preaching during the Sunday morning worship gathering. As far as I can see, the results of both those tendencies—if not rapidly repented of and changed—will be disastrous for the church in the West. So I wrote this book to do what I can to sound the alarm, and also provide tools to help people put God’s Word back into the center of their lives, both individually and corporately.

Josh Moody
Josh Moody

Josh Moody is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton.