Last time in Part 1, we saw how much of the Bible is narrative, and I talked about God using stories to capture our interest and our hearts.
So… we read the stories of the Bible and we see these superman-type people who do awesome things for God, and we get inspired to be just like them, right?
If you think this, then maybe you ought to read about Gideon.
Yes, he did do some amazing things for God, but when the angel first came to him in Judges 6:11-12, where was Gideon?
Hiding in a winepress. Afraid of the Midianites. And the angel called him “valiant warrior.”
Really? Are you kidding?
What kind of valiant warrior was he? Why would I want to read about a loser who is hiding in a winepress from the enemy out there. How can that encourage me?
But this can encourage me because how many times in my life have I been hiding in a winepress? Well, maybe not a winepress, but in my house, on the couch, screening my calls, so that I don’t have to deal with people or depressed because I’m not the best Bible study teacher or—you get what I mean. And then God sends that angel, maybe a friend or a story in the Bible, to tell me how God sees me—as a valiant warrior.
And God tells me that there is hope for me.
So, the second reason God uses stories is because they encourage us that we can become more like Jesus in spite of our failures. We see that in the Bible time and time again.
I think a third reason that God uses stories in the Bible is that we can relate to them and see how intimately He is involved in people’s lives. He created us. God told Jeremiah in 1:5,
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
In 1:9, it says,
“Then the LORD put out His hand and touched my mouth. And the LORD said to me, ‘Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.’”
Don’t you think when God inspired Jeremiah and all those different men to write the Bible that He knew how best to reach deeply into people’s souls?
How does He do it?
Through telling them a story that showed how much He loved them and then when we read it, we can see how much He loves us now!