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Mythology and Meaning: How we read the Scriptures

Categories Theology

Normal_ss_chp08 “A story is a way to say something that can’t be said any other way, and it takes every word in the story to say what the meaning is.” - Flannery O’Conner

 

If the comments to yesterday’s post are anything to go by, mythology resonates quite strongly with many of us. 

And what is mythology really but a certain type of story?

A myth tells a story to explain why things are the way they are, to give us a glimpse into the nature of history, and life, and the struggle between good and evil. 

We know intuitively that a myth “means” as an entire story. What is the point of The Iliad or The Silmarillion? Well, read the story. You might be able to summarize the plot, but even that would be a shorter story, not a list of quotes from the book.

Something I’ve been pondering a lot recently is this; what does that mean for how we read the Bible? After all, most of the Bible is structured as a story. If the Scriptures are, in the words of C.S. Lewis, a “true myth” how then should we approach them? 

Does the way we are taught to approach the Bible actually train us to treat it like a different sort of book than it really is?

- Mason 

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