9.23.2005

'The Bible' Remixes
1. ADD Edit
2. Nun-from-Nantucket Dub
3. There-It's-Lit Prom Mix
4. BYOB eDub


Ooh, you kinky cleric! Is that a Bible in your pocket or are you just happ-Oh. It is.

Slim Bible Dumps the Begats

[SMH.com] In the beginning was the Word. But the Word went on a bit, so a new version of the Bible has been produced for readers with short attention spans.

The 100-Minute Bible, aimed at the "hurried and harried" generation, was launched at Canterbury Cathedral on Wednesday by its author, the Reverend Michael Hinton.

"We have concentrated on Jesus and the chronology of his ministry, because he is the central figure in the Bible," said Hinton. "The poetry has been sacrificed for the sake of clarity, so it is accessible to everyone from the age of 10 upwards."

It took the 78-year-old retired clergyman more than two years to cut down the 66 books of the Bible into a 20,000-word version that could be read in one hour and 40 minutes. The original takes about a week of solid reading to finish.

The Bible, one of the world's most enduring books, has been through numerous often controversial translations and transformations before. There are versions in Liverpudlian Scouse and cockney rhyming slang, as well as one that looks like a magazine for teenage girls and includes beauty tips and advice on boyfriends.



Read the Bible, in Limerick Form

[Scotsman.com] SCOTLAND - A retired GP is to launch a limerick Bible in Edinburgh next month.

Dr Peter Wallis, who was ordained in 2001 as an Anglican priest and now serves villages in West Sussex, said: "I believe that all poetry - that is pure, primitive or profound - is a gift to us so that we may receive enjoyment, encouragement and a deeper experience of God."



Bible Textbook Could Circumvent Culture War

[
Knight Ridder] WASHINGTON - Seeking to defuse a central controversy of the culture wars, a Bible advocacy group unveiled a new textbook today that could open the door to widespread Bible courses in public high schools.

The textbook, titled The Bible and Its Influence, was written to thread a constitutional and legal needle by teaching, not preaching, about the Bible, its editors told Knight Ridder.

The book comes as the country renews its centuries-old debate over the proper role of religion in public life and public schools. Courts and school districts have wrestled for decades over how or whether to teach the Bible.

Scholars have been looking for a way to teach about the Bible in public schools for years, said Sheila Weber, a vice president of the Bible Literacy Project, a Virginia group that's publishing the 40-chapter book.

Obviously a source of faithful inspiration to many, the Bible is also a cultural touchstone that's crucial to young students, Weber said. For example, she said, the works of Shakespeare include 1,300 biblical references. She also noted that 60 percent of the allusions in one advanced-placement literature course had biblical references such as "walking on water."

The new book includes sections explaining the Bible's influence on literature, art, music and history.

Many previous efforts to introduce the Bible to public schools have focused on a Christian interpretation, Weber said. Or they've been taught by teachers who often strayed too far into religion or too far from it.

The book, being published in time for school districts to consider for next year's curricula, was designed to follow a set of guidelines on how to teach about the Bible in public schools while not endorsing one religion's view and not offending people of faith.

Judith Schaeffer, the deputy legal director for People for the American Way, a liberal group that has opposed preaching in public schools, said the book must not endorse any religious perspective. For example, she said, it can't say that the story of Adam and Eve represents mankind's fall from grace. That's a Christian view.

"We are hopeful that it presents a lawful approach to teaching about the Bible."

EXCERPTS:

On Moses parting the Red Sea:
"With impassable waters before them and the furious Egyptians at their backs, the Israelites appeared doomed. But once more, according to Exodus, God intervened."

On the virgin birth of Jesus:
"The original word in Isaiah translated here as virgin can mean young girl or virgin. As it is cited in Matthew, however, it forms the basis for the Christian belief in the virgin birth. The tradition states Mary was a virgin when she conceived and bore Jesus."

On influencing American history:
"Words from the Bible are inscribed on public buildings. Political campaigns are laced with references to the Bible...Little of America's historic public speeches or its great reform movements or the pilgrim wanderings that led to America's founding is completely intelligible without at least a working knowledge of the Bible."

On influencing language:
"The central ridge of thyroid cartilage at the base of the throat, a structure generally more prominent in males, is popularly known as Adam's apple, based on a legend which says that a bit of forbidden fruit lodged in Adam's throat was a warning of the grief to come."

On influencing Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea:
"A number of gospel images can be found...The image of the fish recalls an ancient Christian symbol. The Old Man's bleeding hands recall the nails in Jesus' hands. The way the Old Man holds the line across his back is reminiscent of Jesus carrying the cross...The Old Man lies on his bed with his hat cutting into his head...suggests the crown of thorns."

On understanding the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech on the eve of his assassination:

"To grasp the full impact of this historic moment, one has to know the biblical references. One needs to know what the `mountaintop' is all about. What does `I may not get there with you' mean? What is this reference to the `promised land?'"


And Finally...

[The Associated Press] Another program, favored by evangelical groups and used in hundreds of schools, comes from the National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools of Greensboro, N.C. It provides a teacher's outline with the Bible itself as the textbook.

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