TEXTS THAT EXPLODE UNEXPECTEDLY

WHEN THE BIBLE SPEAKS TO US on a deep level, it's like the proverbial roaring lion—we can't ignore it and we won't soon forget it. Sometimes when this happens at a public gathering, it's what Walter Brueggemann, a prominent church leader and prolific Old Testament scholar, refers to as ancient Biblical texts "exploding" unexpectedly and with fresh meaning in the ears of audiences (Theology Today, July 1997).

I've found that in such powerful group experiences, Bible texts I've read or heard a thousand times seem to say something completely new, because they apply to fresh situations. These incidents are, I think, relatively common among people in Scripture-based communities, but they can never seem routine. I experienced a powerful reminder of this just a few months ago.

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