In my discipleship ministry, I emphasize the importance of reading, studying, and obeying the Bible because I’ve learned that when new believers get into the Word of God, they begin to glean all kinds of insights that will assist and motivate them in their walk with God. However, some people I’ve worked with tell me that they’ve tried to read the Bible, but haven’t understood it. Where should they start?
I’m convinced that Fish the Bible, the 2012 book I’m reviewing today, may be the answer to their question. It’s an excellent tool to put into the hands of new believers. Fish the Bible is well designed for new Christians, but it’s also usable with skeptics, seekers of wisdom, seekers of God, and people like me who want to help all those kinds of individuals.
This wonderful little online book was written by veteran discipler Stephen Wheeler, who is a personal friend of mine. Steve is a former college chemistry professor who has worked with many new Christ-followers, both in the United States and in Canada. He and his wife Jane have been church planting missionaries with the Evangelical Free Church in Quebec since 1988.
What makes Steve’s book so useful?
- It doesn’t presuppose previous knowledge of the Bible or even that the reader is a believer.
- It’s easy to read and even has a lighthearted air to it, comparing studying the Bible to fishing.
- It uses simple, clear and contemporary language, rather than technical or theological language.
- It has real-life case studies of group Bible studies that illustrate the principles in the book.
- It looks at some actual Bible passages in-depth to illustrate how to utilize the principles taught.
- It has some very creative resources. For example, some of the later “fishing sites” have links to videos of actual teaching sessions that give further clarification and provide still more examples.
- It has numerous helpful principles and insights on how to properly interpret the Bible, but it never loses sight of the goal of applying the Word of God to one’s life.
- It has surprising depth so that even a veteran reader of the Bible can glean new insights, especially by going to “Go deep.”
- It’s refreshingly different in style from all the other books I’ve read on biblical interpretation over the years, but I’ll let you discover that for yourself.
- It’s written for someone who is used to modern technology and taking advantage of various online resources, but it’s also easily usable for a non-techie like me.
By the way, I’ve genuinely enjoyed having it on my Kindle application for PC. I’ve had fun learning to highlight sentences, add notes, look up the meaning of words online, etc.
The book is in “Kindle” format, but you can also get free software so you can read the book on iPad, iPhone, iPod, Android, PC, Macintosh, Cloud Reader, Windows Phone, Blackberry, and WebOS.
One more thing – Fish the Bible is inexpensive! I bought it on Amazon for only $1.99! I challenge you to go to your computer and purchase this handy tool. My guess is that after you do, you’ll be recommending it to others.