The Bible is God's masterpiece and gift to you—claim it for all that it's worth.
The Bible is the most read book in all the world. But many of us get stuck in a rut when it comes to approaching it. Rather than feeling inspired and energized, we feel confused, disenchanted, or removed. Bible scholar and lover of God's Word James Coakley wants to share fourteen invaluable strategies that will bring our Scripture study to life.
The Bible is historical, true, and it's also great literature. The Artist who created the universe has also gifted us with His Word, which is beautifully designed and full of creativity. The same riveting techniques that modern authors use in their books were also used by Biblical authors long ago. Coakley opens our eyes to the dramatic and poetical ways God communicates to us. Readers will acquire practical strategies to engage in God's Word and general guidelines that will keep them on track.
The literary skills mentioned in this book don't require advanced training—just a desire to open and receive the gift of God's Word. Would you like to unearth new treasure and insight whenever you open your Bible? Coakley promises an exciting ride and invigorating time in God's eternal, life-changing Word!
"So, you want to read the Bible but don't know how to begin? Or maybe you just want to get more out of your reading of the Scriptures so you can hear God's voice more clearly. This book is for you. Let experienced Bible teacher Jim Coakley lead you through these simple but effective principles for getting more out of your Bible. Find the freshness you've been looking for in your daily time in the Word by reading 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible."
Professor of Jewish Studies and Bible, Moody Bible Institute; syndicated radio host / Bible teacher on Open Line with Dr. Michael Rydelnik
"No book in history has had the power to dramatically change the lives and life perspectives of its readers than the Bible. So it's no wonder that believers seek to read it regularly out of respect for its divine author and with the hope of personal profit. Yet, over time, the exercise of reading the text can have a way of becoming routine and more of a duty than a delight. So, if you are looking for a way to reinvigorate your time in the Word, Jim Coakley's insights into the different lenses in which to see Scripture is just what you are looking for! Highly recommended!"
Former President, Moody Bible Institute
"We all have our favorite foods, favorite clothes, and favorite songs. But every so often we need a little change and variety to keep life from becoming too monotonous. And the same is true when we read God's Word. The one-and-done chapter-a-day approach, or the read-through-the-Bible-in-a-year program are both fine, but they can also make us focus so intently on 'getting through' that we miss the joy of interacting with the text. Looking for a fresh way to enjoy your time in God's Word? Then read this book by Dr. James Coakley! Jim provides fourteen new and exciting ways to enjoy the Bible you likely haven't explored before. These are not gimmicks or fads. Based on his years of studying and teaching, Jim shares how the Bible is structured in ways that will help the message become clearer and more understandable. He also provides biblical examples for each technique to help you discover for yourself how it helps reveal the meaning of the text. If you want to take your Bible study to a new level, then read 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible. You will discover new ways to make your time in God's Word fresh and exciting!"
Professor-at-Large of Bible at Moody Bible Institute; host of The Land and the Book radio program
"I love this book! It is simply brilliant. James Coakley knows that to understand what the Bible says, you have to understand how it says it. He knows that the Bible is a literary masterpiece, and he is skilled at helping readers enjoy its literary techniques (how it says it) as a window into its meaning (what it says). Everything about this book is fresh—the writing, the ideas, and the examples. Coakley's volume has helped me become a better Bible reader and has given me a deeper love for God and His Word."
Senior Pastor, CrossLife Evangelical Free Church (Libertyville, IL); Director of the Doctor of Ministry program, Western Seminary (Portland, OR)
"Bible readers will want to read this book! Coakley makes all the pro tips from the experts very easy to understand. As a seasoned explorer, excited about new discoveries himself, he shows readers what to look for in the text as we mine the depths of Scripture."
—Tim M. Sigler
Provost & Dean | Professor of Hebrew & Biblical Studies, Shepherds Theological Seminary
"It's hard to talk to Jim Coakley without quickly picking up on his love for God's Word and commitment to helping others love it too. In 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible, Jim gives every Christian a tool not just to dig deeper into God's Word but to learn more deeply who God is. As a Bible teacher, I'm always looking for ways to help others better understand their Bibles in order to more deeply love the God who wrote the Bible, and Jim superbly gives us a practical and usable tool to do just that. Get this book, read it, and enjoy its fruit in your life for years to come. You can thank me later."
Founder, Living with Power Ministries; author of Fractured Faith: Finding Your Way Back to God in an Age of Deconstructions
"As a decades-long literature teacher, I know novels and stories change lives. Why then do sincere Christians, longing to find the Bible interesting, 'power through' a text, even great narratives, dutifully, unmoved? This book, treating the Bible as the literary book it is, teaches the reader to see the beauty, design, and cleverness of biblical text. In an utterly engaging, sometimes funny, always approachable manner, Dr. Coakley teaches us how to read well, illustrating with film and literature, classic and contemporary (Tolkien, Forrest Gump, Shakespeare, Steinbeck, etc.). It is a book I will recommend again and again."
—Rosalie de Rosset
Professor of literature, Moody Bible Institute
"In 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible, James Coakley guides readers in attending to important literary features in the biblical text. The volume avoids technical language, is written in a clear and down-to-earth style, and provides a multitude of examples from both the Bible and nonbiblical works. Students won't even know how much they're learning!"
—Mark L. Strauss
Professor of New Testament at Bethel Seminary of Bethel University and Vice-Chair, NIV Committee on Bible Translation
"You're about to take a trip with one of the finest Bible guides I've ever met. 14 Fresh Ways to Enjoy the Bible is a master class on how to help people see things in the Scriptures that are easily missed. Jim's passion for fresh biblical discovery is contagious, and his illustrations are gripping. You'll find yourself turning the pages of Scripture with a clearer vision of what to look for and eager anticipation of liberating truths to be applied—a truly life-changing book."
Pastor at 180 Chicago Church, host of Karl & Crew Mornings, and author of The 7 Resolutions: Where Self-Help Ends and God's Power Begins