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John Henry Newman om språket i Bibeln:

"This kind of writing (den världsliga litteraturen) is for the most part much
affected and admired by the people of weak judgement and viscious taste;
but it is a piece of affectation and formality the sacred writers are utter strangers to.
It is a vain and boyish eloquence; and as it has always been esteemed below
the great geniuses of all ages, so much more so with respect to those writers
who were actuated by the spirit of Infinite Wisdom, and therfore wrote with
that force and majesty with which never man writ. The other sort of eloquence
is quite the reverse to this, and which may be said to be the true characteristic
of the Holy Scriptures; where the excellence does not arise from laboured and
far-fetched elocution, but from a surprising mixture of simplicity and majesty,
which is a double character, so difficult to be united that it is seldom to be met
with in compositions merely human. We see nothing in Holy Writ of affectation
and superfluose ornament...The natural conclusion from hence is, that in the
classical authors, the expression, the sweetness of the numbers, occasioned by
the musical placing of words, constitute a great part of their beauties;
whereas in the sacred writings, they consist more in the greatness of the things
themselves, than in the words and expressions. The ideas and conceptions
are so great and lofty in their own nature that they necessarily appear magnificent
in the most artless dress. Look but into the Bible and we see them shine
through the most simple and literal translations."

Dietrich Bultmann om skriftläsning:

"Efter psaltarbön och unison psalm följer skriftläsning. "Var nitisk i att föreläsa Skriften" (1 Tim. 4:13). Även här har vi många skadliga fördomar att övervinna, innan vi kan komma till en riktig gemensam skriftläsning. Vi tar nästan allesammans för givet att i skriftläsningen skall man endast höra Guds ord för innevarande dag. Därför består skriftläsningen för det mesta blott av några korta verser, som man utvalt till dagens ledmotiv. Och det är inget tvivel om att t ex Dagens lösen är i dag är till verklig välsignelse för den som brukar denna andaktsbok. Just i kyrkans kamptider har detta gått upp för många till deras stora och tacksamma förvåning.

Men lika litet kan det vara tvivel underkastat att den egentliga skriftläsningen är oumbärlig vid sidan av de korta lösenorden. Det är inte en lösen för dagen man menar när man talar om Den heliga skrift som skall best? alla dagar intill tidens ände. Skriften är mer än lösen. Den är även mer än "bröd för dagen". Den är Guds uppenbarade ord för alla människor i alla tider. Den heliga skrift består inte av enstaka bibelspråk, den är en enhet av och vill gälla som sådan. Det är såsom enhet Skriften är Guds uppenbarelseord. Det fulla vittnesbördet om Jesus Kristus, Herren, blir förnimbart först i den oändliga rikedomen av inre sammanhang i Skriften: gamla och nya förbundet, löftena och uppfyllelsen, offer och lag, lag och evangelium, kors och uppståndelse, tro och lydnad, ägande och hopp." (s.35, Liv i gemenskap)

Studderd Kennedy om Bibeln i "The Hardest Part":

The Bible is a queer

Book, as queer as life itself. How about

myself ? I'm a parson, and I've studied

it, of course. I study it still ; but do I

love it ? Well, parts of it I do — revel in

them ; parts of it I don't. I get irritated

when I have to read out to people in church

some of the stories in the Old Testament.

I would not mind if they were read out as

legends not supposed to be true, though

even then some appear to be pointless

and not worth reading out. The worst of

it is that we have to read them out with-

out comment, as though we thought them

true and valuable. I don't believe that

Balaam's ass spoke, or that Jonah lived in

a whale's belly, or that the walls of Jericho

fell flat. I am bothered about the plagues

of Egypt and the passage of the Red Sea.

Then there are the really bad stories.

They are bad, because they give a false

idea of God, and so are really blasphemous

when read as real truth. God hardens

Pharaoh's heart and then destroys him

because his heart was hard. That is

frankly immoral. There is the man who

put out his hand to steady the Ark and

was struck dead by the hand of God.

What a God ! I love Elisha, but some of

the stories about him and Elijah are in-

credible and immoral. I think Elisha's

treatment of the children that called him

" bald pate " showed that he had no

sense of humour, and it's a positive dis-

grace to drag God into it, as if He hadn't

any sense of humour either, when He

made it. The children were rude and

they ought to have been smacked, but to

have them eaten up by bears is the limit.

I have heard that taken as a lesson in an

Infants' School. That is real blasphemy.

God is not a bogey-man. Elijah calls down

fire from heaven to burn up companies of

soldiers who were doing their duty. It is

impossible, and immoral as well. Of course

I don't believe in the truth of the six

days' creation or the Flood and Noah's ark ;

but then, I don't think those pretend to be

true : they are just splendid legends con-

taining great truths.

I don't wonder that the ordinary man

gets muddled about the Bible, yet I love

it, and I find within its covers the finest

things in life.

I love it, because for me it fulfils its

purpose, and that is how it must be judged

— upon the whole, like any other book.

What is the purpose of the Book ? Is it

a book at all ? Isn't it just a haphazard

collection of writings ? No ; it is a book.

That is one of the queerest parts about it.

It is a collection of writings by all sorts and

conditions of men at all sorts and con-

ditions of times, that, by some strange

process of natural or supernatural selection,

have got together and made a real Book.

There is something odd about the evolution

of the canon ; something odder, I mean,

than there is about the evolution of a cat.

Both, of course, are astounding and God

guided ; but if the one is called natural, I

should call the other supernatural. Yes, the

Bible is a book, because a single purpose

runs through it and makes it one. What is

that purpose ? I think it is to teach the

love of God.

That is the aim and object

of it all.

(Sv. översättning från Svenska Folkbibeln (SFB) utom apokryferna som är från, 1981 års övers.)

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