Item description for The Good Book: Reading the Bible with Mind and Heart by Peter J. Gomes...
Overview Demonstrates how to read the Bible for understanding on such topics as joy, suffering, evil, and goodness, explaining how to make bible wisdom a part of everyday life and revealing what the bible actually says about women, homosexuality, and ethnic diversity.
"The Bible and the social and moral consequences that derive from its interpretation are all too important to be left in the hands of the pious or the experts, and too significant to be ignored and trivialized by the uninformed and indifferent.
Citations And Professional Reviews The Good Book: Reading the Bible with Mind and Heart by Peter J. Gomes has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/2004 page 68
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.16" Width: 6.04" Height: 0.72" Weight: 0.95 lbs.
Release Date May 1, 2002
ISBN 0060088303 ISBN13 9780060088309 UPC 099455014953
Availability 0 units.
More About Peter J. Gomes
Peter J. Gomes has been minister of Harvard University's Memorial Church since 1974, when he was appointed Pusey Minister of the church, and serves as Plummer Professor of Christian Morals. An American Baptist minister, he was named one of America's top preachers by Time magazine. He is the recipient of thirty-three honorary degrees and an Honorary Fellow of Emmanuel College, the University of Cambridge, England, where the Gomes Lectureship is established in his name.
Peter J. Gomes currently resides in Boston, in the state of Massachusetts. Peter J. Gomes was born in 1942.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Good Book: Reading the Bible with Mind and Heart?
This book is very well written......... Sep 5, 2007
....and I'm sure that Dr. Gomes is a decent man, who loves God, and The Bible. Still, I think he misses the mark. He holds that The Bible is a great book, worthy of study, but not necessarily the infallible Word of God; some of us disagree.
The main controversy centers around Dr. Gomes' defense of homosexuality, asserting that The Bible is merely condemning non-consensual sex; numerous denominations, including Dr. Gomes' own, hold homosexual conduct to be a mortal sin, with the sinner in need of Christ's forgiveness. The Bible speaks against some forms of consensual heterosexual sex, too [Exodus 20:14]. Of course, EVERYBODY is against rape; Dr. Gomes is setting up a straw man. A good friend and co-worker is a Christian Conservative Republican lesbian [life is filled with contradictions]; she holds that a close reading of The Bible only condemns male homosexuality.
I gave this book two stars, instead of one; as I said, it is very well written, and well organized. Also, Dr Gomes is quite right about some things; people in this country are possessed of Biblical ignorance to an absolutely appalling degree...in some of my other reviews, I've spoken about historical ignorance; this is FAR worse. In fact, there will be hell to pay someday. The main good point is Dr. Gomes frequent encouragement to read The Bible, and learn for ourselves; to that, I can but say AMEN.
Great insight! Jul 14, 2007
Being a person who is very much bothered by the idea that the Bible should be read literally, with no attention paid to the time, place, and culture in which it was written and in which it is being read, this book gave me hope. The author really encourages us to pay attention to the spirit (and the Spirit) and not necessarily "the letter". It was not exactly a breeze for me to read because there was so much I wanted to note and remember. I plan to reread the book with a highlighter pen in hand. I highly recommend the book to anyone who is interested in understanding what the Bible really has to say. The Bible is not static. In fact, if it is not a "living" word for us today, in our culture, there's not much point in reading it more than once. But if you're looking for the spirit in which it was written, you may wish to continue studying the Bible, as well as "The Good Book: Reading...".
The Bible and Homosexuality May 21, 2007
If you want to understand what the Bible says about homosexuality, this reference book will explain it in the context of today's society.
A Bible reference for intelligent people Feb 13, 2007
Dubbed by Times magazine as one of America's seven best preache's, Harvard professor of Christian Morals and pastor of the school's University's Memorial Church, Rev. Gomes' latest work, The Good Book, is a bestseller selection of the Book of the Month and Quality Paperback Book Clubs. This well-written, compassionate and thoughtful book is written for the general public to entice them back to reading the Bible through new eyes, paying more attention to its moral principles than the social practices.
Rev. Gomes asserts that Biblical literacy in this country is extremely rare. Among a thousand people polled in the US by the Barna Research Group 10 percent said that Joan of Arc was Noah's wife, 16 percent were convinced that the New Testament contained the Gospel of Thomas, and 38 percent believed the Old and New Testaments were written a few years after Jesus' death. Gomes observed humorously that, "These replies are worthy of the old Sunday school howler in which the epistles are defined as the wives of the apostles." (p. 5)
The Good Book is divided into three sections: "Opening the Bible" wherein Gomes warns against three dangerous and common temptations on Biblical interpretation: (1) bibliolatry, "the worship of the Bible, making it an object of veneration and ascribing to it the glory belonging to God," (2) literalism, "the worship of the text, in which the letter is given inappropriate superiority over the spirit, and (3) culturalism, "the worship of the culture in which the Bible is forced to conform to the norms of the prevailing culture." Section two, "The Use and Abuse of the Bible" is a historical account of how the Bible has been used to oppress certain groups: Jews, women, homosexuals, and minorities. Section three, "The True and Lively Word" explores what the Bible has to say about the good life, evil, suffering, temptation, wealth, science, mystery and joy."
In an interview about the book with the Harvard University Gazette, Gomes commented "I would say, one, the Bible is accessible. Two, it takes work. The Bible is not a Reader's Digest sort of enterprise, and you can't simply open it up, as 90 percent of religious people do, and just hope that inspiration oozes out of the page or that you can just figure it out because you're a reasonably intelligent person. But, three, the work pays off because the Bible has to do with issues, both great and small, that are as relevant as tomorrow's headlines."
The Good Book is filled with scholarship and imagination, with wit and wisdom sufficient to serve as a road map back to and through the Bible. I join with the former Archbishop of Canterbury, The Right Reverend Lord Runcie, who hailed The Book as "easily the best contemporary book on the Bible for thoughtful people."
Homosexuality and other issues clarified with integrity. Nov 6, 2006
A book that should be read by anyone wanting to understand how to read the Bible with an understanding of it in both the context of the time it was put together by various scholars, and in the context of today's society. The author is a notable scholar himself and yet writes in a style that is asscesible. The whole book is splendidly presented but the best chapter, and one that whould be mandatory reading, is his chapter on homosexuality. He carefully, respectfully and profoundly lays to rest the many misconceptions and misinterpretaions about this issue. If you don't read anything else in this book, read this chapter and share it with everyone you know.