most of the bible is a history told by people living in lands occupied by conquering superpowers. it is a book written from the underside of power. it’s an oppression narrative. the majority of the Bible was written by a minority people living under the rule and reign of massive, mighty empires, from the egyptian empire to the babylonian empire to the persian empire to the assyrian empire to the roman empire.
this can make the bible a very difficult book to understand if you are reading it as a citizen of the the most powerful empire the world has ever seen. without careful study and reflection, and humility, it may even be possible to miss central themes of the scriptures.
context and usage determine meaning. is it possible that perhaps the way we approach the sacred scriptures needs to be reinterpreted? if so, in what ways? if not, why not?
read a few more great quotes from rob bell here, via scot mcknight.
and for those of you who may be a little uncomfortable with me quoting rob bell,
please read this.