Two Christian camps, two approaches to Scripture: Part I

Beth Caplin begins review of two books with different approaches to Biblical reading and interpretation.

Sarahbeth Caplin


For the last few weeks, I embarked on a personal project that compares two books, each one representing two strands of Christianity and their approach to reading and interpreting Scripture. The first book is Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin, representing the mainstream, evangelical view. The second is The Bible Tells Me So (my second time reading it) by Peter Enns, representing a more progressive (some might say “liberal”) view.

If you’re familiar with my work, you might assume that I align more with Enns’ view of the Bible – and you would be correct. Wilkin’s book was recommended by a conservative Christian blogger I follow on Instagram. I’ll be honest: I ordered it used from Amazon fully expecting to hate it. I thought it would proclaim innerancy as the only way to read Scripture, refusing to thoughtfully consider the more disturbing parts that involve rape, slavery, and genocide.

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