PERSPECTIVE: ‘Passages’ worthy
Go find your Bible and hold it in your hands. In most of our homes, we could choose between multiple copies and translations of the Bible. We read and study it when we want for as long as we want. We do so not realizing the great sacrifice paid across thousands of years by saints of God to give us the sacred book we love and cherish.
While in seminary, I had the joy of studying the history of the Bible. It is a fascinating journey to follow the transmission of sacred text from beginning to end. The story is marked by faithful scribes who painstakingly hand copied the text to ensure it would be passed on to others, and by men who were willing to be burned at the stake to assure that the populace would be able to read the Bible in their native tongue.
I do not expect that you or I can imagine the huge price our forefathers paid to provide for us the Bible we hold in our hands so nonchalantly. That is why I urge you to take the time to go through the Passages exhibit at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. Seriously, I wish every believer would take a day and make the effort to walk through this magnificent collection which chronicles the development of our modern Bible. Polla and I had the privilege of being a part of the preview of the display. It was a wonderful blessing to us.
The Green family has once again blessed Christians, and the world, by providing an entertaining, engaging and reverent journey of the sacred text to the Bible we read today. You will see copies of Scripture that are centuries old. From handwritten copies in Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew, to the Gutenberg press and on to modern translations, the journey will educate and inspire.
Passages is the kind of exhibit that would be worthy of churches bringing every age group to enjoy. Senior adults will leave satisfied that their faith in the Holy Word of God is well placed. Teens will be struck by the awesome hand of God on the people who translated, copied and printed the Bible they carry to church. It will be a faith-building experience. Even children will be inspired and learn much about the process God used to give them the Bible.
The validity of Scripture is under attack today. Most of you reading this article will agree when I declare that the Bible is the inspired truth of God and is infallible and inerrant. But after walking through Passages, you will be armed with knowledge that will support your conviction. You will leave knowing that your faith in the Bible is well founded and built on a strong foundation.
Throughout the exhibit, the simple, yet powerful, Gospel is intertwined. People who have no faith, but are interested in old books, will not escape the message that Jesus Christ is the central subject of the Scripture and that His life, death and resurrection are the Gospel that transforms a sinful heart.
The Green family has granted us all a huge favor by investing multiplied millions in purchasing this collection. Plans are in place to build a large museum where the entire collection (Passages is only a small part of the collection) can be placed on display. Visitors from around the world will be challenged with the truth of the Bible. The Green family has not chosen the final place for the museum, but wherever it is placed, it will be a tremendous testimony to the truth of God’s Word.
So plan a trip to the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. It will be worth the time and expense to do so. For those of us who love the Word of God, it will be better than seeing a Thunder game! Go Thunder, beat Dallas!
Anthony L. Jordan is executive director-treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.