Voices of Faith: Something for everyone in world's greatest book

This is an exciting time in literature! Robert Allen Zimmerman has won the Nobel Prize for this subject. This, according to some, expands the boundaries of how we define the term. Listen to a part of one of his poems.

 

“Once upon a time you dressed so fine

Threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn’t you?

People call say beware doll, you’re bound to fall

You thought they were all kidding you.”

Many of you will recognize these lines from the great song, Like a Rolling Stone, by Robert Allen Zimmerman, whose name he legally changed to Bob Dylan.

Some see his winning as an absolute disaster, a sign of impending doom. Others, like myself, see Dylan as well deserving of his honor.

Either way, let’s think about literature and awards. The best selling book of all time, according to the Guiness Book Of World Records, is one that to my search of the internet may never have won a single award. Yet it’s sold over 5,000,000,000 copies. The entire book has been translated into 349 languages while at least one part of the book has found its way into 2,123 languages, including Klingon.

That book is, of course, the Bible.

The Bible has some things that are hard to understand. Even one of its own writers, the inspired Apostle Peter, says so.

But there are many things in the Bible that are easy to understand and life changing.

Do you want to know how to make friends? Here’s some advice from the Bible:

Learn to keep a secret. Become a good listener. Speak kindly to people. Don’t eat too much when you go out to eat with someone you want to be friends with, especially if they’re footing the bill. This last is in Proverbs 23:1-4.

Do you want to live in a way that makes God happy? If you have 2 coats and see someone with no coat, give him one. If you have some cold water and see someone thirsty, give him a drink. Pray for everyone, and especially for your enemies.

All this and far, far more is in the Bible.

For the Bible includes the greatest story of all time, the story that all great literature reflects. It is the love story. It is the story of a loving Father seeking to be reunited with his children. They have run away from home only to become prisoners. It tells of how he was willing to come to where his children were and to die for them so they could be set free.

All great literature draws its themes from the story: heartache and joy, tears and laughter, despair and hope, the tension between good and evil, seeming defeat but final victory. A child can read it and be happy and a scholar can spend a lifetime studying it and not grow tired of it.

Again, I must confess, I don’t think this book has won any awards. But I recommend it above all others.

Rick Cupp is minister at the Kenai Fellowship, Mile 8.5 Kenai Spur Highway, Kenai. Sunday Bible classes are at 10:00, 10:45 Coffee and 11:15 Worship; Wednesday meal is at 6:15, Worship and Bible classes at 7:00.

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