Home Podcast Jen Wilkin on the Biggest Obstacle Keeping People From Reading the Bible

Jen Wilkin on the Biggest Obstacle Keeping People From Reading the Bible

“What’s amazing is that middle schoolers and high schoolers are learning literacy tools in their English classes at school, but no one has told them that they can use those same kinds of tools to read the Bible. The Bible is magical to them instead of being the inspired Word of God that is in book form.”

“Meditating on something is, first of all, an act of the intellect, and it’s really mulling something over and giving it a chance to expand on you.”

“We have a surface level understanding of what God’s commands are really saying, and we’re looking for a bare minimum way of reading them instead of an expansive way of reading them.”

“We need active learning environments [in the church].”

“I would say that over the last 30 or 40 years in the church, we have seen develop an expert/amateur divide. The expert stands on a platform and communicates the specialized information to the amateurs who sit in the pews. And not only have we seen this, but we have seen both the expert and the amateur embrace those roles fully. The people who are sitting in the pews think that it is the job of the person on a platform to do the work for them.”

“I don’t want people to hear me finish a teaching and think, ‘Wow, that was amazing. How did she do that?’ I want people to think, ‘I see what she did there. I could do that.’ And so I think that’s the key shift that we need to make.”

“We know that people in the Scriptures are given a gift of teaching, and so we’re not diminishing that at all. But we also know that the Great Commission is charging all of us to teach people to obey all that he has commanded. So there is some teaching function just to being a disciple.”

“I think behind a lot of the deconstruction conversation that’s happening right now is people are abandoning a faith that they haven’t ever really even known…that’s a legitimate reason that people are re-evaluating things, and I don’t think it’s their fault. I think that we have not compelled them to something that is more beautiful and deep.”

“I actually don’t think ‘outside the box’ is what we need. I think outside the box is what we have.”

“You want a curriculum that raises dissonance, not one that relieves it.”

“When you initially make this shift and you start asking more of people, they will say it’s too hard and they’ll say they don’t have time for it. It is a slow, slow boil if you start to introduce this to your church. But I will say that once they have tried it, they can’t go back.”

“With preaching, there’s only so much you can do to make Sunday morning a more active learning environment. But a big thing you can do is publish the passage you’re going to be in the week before so that people can spend the week reading it repetitively.”