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Anglican Evangelical Journal for Theology and Mission

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Learning to Take Scripture Seriously

Evan D. Garner
Published Online: 2014-03-11 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/anv-2013-0013


This paper is mainly the product of an international conference on sexuality and scripture that was held in Limuru, Kenya, during the summer of 2013. For almost two-thousand years, Christians have held different views on the role and authority of scripture in the Church. Those differences were made manifest by the participants in this conference. Largely because of their diverse cultural backgrounds, leaders from different parts of the global Christian community continue to use the Bible in the debates over human sexuality in remarkably different ways. This paper identifies the Contextual Bible Study method as a promising hermeneutical tool for finding agreement in the interpretation of scripture among individuals from such diverse backgrounds and from competing theological positions. After reviewing the Contextual Bible Study method and its applicability to the issue of human sexuality, the paper suggests the benefits of leaving behind familiar arguments over those passages of scripture most often cited in these debates in favour of a robust discussion of yet largely unexplored theological arguments.

About the article

Evan D. Garner

The Revd Evan D. Garner serves as the Rector of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Decatur, Alabama (USA). After training for ministry at Ridley Hall Theological College in Cambridge, he was ordained and served in a parish in Montgomery, Alabama. He was a deputy to the Episcopal Church’s General Convention in 2012 and currently serves as a member of its Standing Commission for Lifelong Christian Formation and Education. He and his wife Elizabeth have three young children.

Published Online: 2014-03-11

Published in Print: 2014-03-01

Citation Information: ANVIL, Volume 30, Issue 1, Pages 31–40, ISSN (Print) 0969-7373, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/anv-2013-0013.

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