Table Rustic
Helpful Tidbits for Organic Church Life                                             Aprit 14, 2008
In This Issue
More Than a Book
My Reflections
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I spent my weekend in San Jose, CA presenting at one of Church Multiplication Associates's organic church planters' conferences. On the last day we cover the importance of the Bible in mission. We call it "breathing in" or "inhaling." In other words, just as God breathed into Adam (Gen 2:7) and the ecclesia (Acts 2), so too God breathes into people today. It's a mystery, really, how little dark marks on a page can facilitate such wonder, but it does: with precision.

THIS WEEK'S QUESTION/TOPIC: When it comes to mission, the Bible is the most effective tool on the market
More Than a Book 
Excerpt from Hebrews by an anonymous author, inspired by the Holy Spirit 


For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

My Reflections

One of the things I spend a lot of time on is how little dark marks on a page transforms people. Writing on "fidelity" in bible translation, Shaw and Van Engen write, "What, then, do we mean by 'fidelity'? Our response is 'faithfulness to God's communication as given in the text that draws persons to a relationship with God.' The focus is not on the words of the text as such but on the nature of God as reflected in the text. This is what makes the Bible a unique enterprise and makes communicating it a missionary activity" (2003:32). Now, by "communicating it," Shaw and Van Engen mean either proclamation of the gospel or bible translation.

The power of the Bible, then, is this: it's ability to re-present the almighty God in the mind (spirit) of the receptor is second-to-none. So, never underestimate the power of the Bible in mission, in discipleship, for it "penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit."
Hope this was of some benefit to you.

Traver Dougherty
The Banqueting Table