Book Review: A Short Guide to Reading the Bible Better by George H. Guthrie

A Short Guide to Reading the Bible starts with, “This is a book about words.” This short book has a compelling argument for why reading the Bible is so important and how to go about making it a priority in your life.

This book is only six chapters and less than two hundred pages. It has practice points and discussion questions. Clearly, this is not just a book to be read cover to cover, but a guide to help the reader do what the book title states.

The author makes the case for why studying and knowing the bible is so very important. We all know this, but the author highlights that the Bible is God’s world and should be used as a foundation for life itself.

Various surveys in different cultures love the past half century, have determined that the number one predictor of a person’s spiritual health is the regular practice of personal Bible reading.

George H. Guthrie, A Short Guide to Reading the Bible Better

The author points the reader to read the Bible to cultivate a relationship with God and all the ways God’s word can feed the soul. He stresses the importance of hearing the words the Bible is telling us. By focusing on how to hear God’s word considering context, author, and first intended audience.

The author addresses the importance of translations and how we should make use of them as opposed to being confused by them. He points out the tools we have available to us to make understanding the Bible easier.

All of this is to stress that we cannot use church leaders as our only guide to learning from God’s word.

My favorite part of this book was reading “An Overview of the Story” in Chapter 5. In this section, the author spells out the Bible in three grand “acts”. He sums up the Bible and entices the reader with a summary of the Bible.

This book would make a great gift for a new Christian, or someone that is overwhelmed with how to get into the word. This book would also be a great study for small groups.

About the book:

The number one predictor of a person’s spiritual health is the regular practice of personal Bible reading.
But this is precisely the point where many Christians stumble. Why? For many reasons, but one of them is simply that reading the Bible can be challenging. Even when we set aside the time and space, we don’t always know where to begin, understand what we’re reading, or know how one part connects to the next.
Wouldn’t it be helpful to have a guide for reading the Bible better?
A Short Guide to Reading the Bible Better is an accessible handbook to help you better read God’s Word, whether you are new to the Bible or have been reading it faithfully for decades. This book was designed to be read together by an entire church, studied by a small group, or engaged by an individual looking to sharpen his or her Bible reading skill.
A clear and concise roadmap for reading God’s Word well, this book will equip you to open God’s Word with intention, purpose, and context every time, so that you may see God transform your hearts and minds as you read. 

About the author:

Dr. George Guthrie serves as the Benjamin W. Perry Professor of Bible at Union University in Jackson, TN. As a student of the New Testament and Koine Greek, he is the author of numerous articles and seven books, including, The Structure of Hebrews: A Textlinguistic Analysis (Supplements to Novum Testamentum, 73. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1994; republished by Baker Books in 1998), Biblical Greek Exegesis (Co-authored with J. Scott Duvall, Zondervan), the NIV Application Commentary: Hebrews, and Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary: Hebrews. Dr. Guthrie has participated in translation projects, such as the revision of The New Living Translation, and has served as a consultant on the Holman Christian Standard Bible, the New Century Version, and the English Standard Version. He has also served for five years as a co-chair of the Biblical Greek Language and Linguistics Section of SBL, has served on the Executive Committee of the Institute for Biblical Research, and has served on the editorial board for Sheffield’s JSNTS monograph series. At Union University he has led in the establishment of, and serves as Senior Fellow in, the Ryan Center for Biblical Studies, which is committed to promoting sound Bible reading, study, and interpretation at the grassroots level of the church. Dr. Guthrie holds both the Ph.D. and the M.Div. degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Th.M. from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.

*I received this product for review from the publisher, this does not affect my personal opinion. This post contains affiliate links.

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