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Although the Bible has been referred to, quoted from, and applied to broad social issues and private problems for centuries, Allen asserts that the degree of ignorance as to its content is vast and deep. Noting that adults rarely read the Bible, Allen is convinced that millions who do read it are not able to understand certain passages at all.
Steve Allen's Bible study began during his travels: he would peruse the Bibles found in any hotel room, marking passages that would strike him as extraordinarily beautiful or extremely confusing. Spellbound by the mystery of it, he became aware that from the very beginning the text leads not just to scholarly debate, but directly to controversy that has, over the centuries and even today, fostered unaccountable slaughter and atrocity. And, he notes, it is perhaps of greater urgency now than ever before that all Americans become conversant with the Bible, because of those who use it as a weapon to force their views on the rest of the population. Although Allen believes in God, he is critical of those fundamentalists who interpret the Bible literally, and those who would use it in the political arena.
Throughout the book, Allen offers direct quotes from biblical scholars - Catholic, Protestant, Judaic - in addition to generous references to the views of various scholarly specialists. His goal - to make people think about what the Bible really says - is achieved through clear and readable prose. More Steve Allen on the Bible is an important addition to our understanding of the Bible, religion, and morality."
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