Skip to main content

BookTuesday: Route 66

Today's book comes, again, from Kregel Publications. It's another free book in exchange for the review. Now that I've told you that, let's get to business.

The book is titled Route 66 and it's by Krish Kandiah. Below is a link on Amazon, and the title above is hyperlinked to Kregel's page. Going to Kregel will get you more information on the author, an excerpt of the book, and a chance to buy it. Going to Amazon will get you the chance to buy it from Amazon, which is something I no longer profit from, but I still link there anyway.

Route 66: A Crash Course in Navigating Life with the Bible

This book is written as a guide book for understanding the Bible. It's broken down into eight chapters, with each chapter broken down into five sections.

Essentially, this is designed for a group study with daily reading and weekly discussion. It's not a bad format. The sections are not too long, and the questions dig in---not too deep, but not overly shallow.

The content breaks down like this: Route 66 is intended as a guide to understanding the Bible through various literary genres. Kandiah views the Bible as containing basically eight (what luck, same number of chapters!) literary genres. These are the different types of writing that you find: narrative, law, wisdom literature, letters, prophecy, and so forth.

The book attempts to categorize each book of the Bible into the genres that Kandiah identifies. He then provides suggestions of how to understand and extract the intent from the various types of literature.

In all, this is an easily readable attempt at teaching basic Biblical understanding. If you are starting up a small-group study, it's a good start.

The drawback here is for anyone who would make this good start their final stop in understanding the Bible. Kandiah's example of Route 66, the highway is a helpful metaphor here: the old highway varied in width and road type all along the way. Likewise, there are few Biblical books that fall cleanly into only one literary type or another. Those that do, like Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, or the Psalms, contain a large amount of diversity within their genre anyway.

Books like Genesis or Exodus are a mixture of genre, as are the Books of the Kings. Even "prophets" often contain narrative. Kandiah acknowledges this, but the flow of the book is a little forced on the issue. I'd say it's partially because of trying to work through the 66 books of Scripture in their canonical order. That's not all bad, it just serves as a limiting factor.

A study group or individual starting with Route 66 would do well to move from there to How to Read the Bible for All It's Worth by Fee and Stuart to look at how the genres intermingle and some stronger work on extracting the meaning present in the text.

I wouldn't put a "stop sign" for traveling Route 66, but there's places this one can't get you---after all, there's more to see than just the road from Chicago to LA. After you've made that trip, make another one.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Abraham Lincoln Quoted by Jesus! Mark 3

Mark records a curious event in his third chapter (link). If you look at Mark 3:25, you'll see that Jesus quotes the sixteenth President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. After all, one of the highlights of the Lincoln years is his famous speech regarding slavery in the United States where he used the phrase that "a house divided against itself cannot stand." This speech was given in 1858 when he accepted the nomination to run against Stephen A. Douglas for Senate, but is still remembered as the defining speech regarding slaveholding in the United States. I recall being taught in school how brilliant and groundbreaking the speech was, how Lincoln had used such wise words to convey his thought. Yet the idea was not original to Lincoln. Rather, it was embedded in Lincoln from his time reading the Bible. Now, I have read varying reports about Lincoln's personal religious beliefs: some place him as a nearly completely committed Christian while others have him somewh…

Independence Day 2017

I don’t know if Thomas Paine will be aggrieved that I paste his thoughts from Common Sense here, from the electronic edition. It’s a Public Domain work at this point, so hopefully none will be bothered that I am not paying for it...I think there is value in seeing the underlying reasons of Independence. I find a couple of things noteworthy in his introduction:First, he speaks of those who disagree and, while calling those out, holds the strength of his affirmative argument will be enough to straighten them out. We could do well to think more like that.Second, his final sentence should be a required view: the influence of reason and principle. Not self-interest masquerading as principle. Not party propaganda disguised as reason.That being said, not everything Paine said is right. If he and I lived at the same time, we’d argue religion over a great deal. However, the idea of “natural rights of man” follows from the idea of humanity as a special creation—that all are created equal and en…