Dane Ortlund:

Bible; Bible; Bible. Sit under, not stand over. Self-consciously, not assumingly. It’s tantalizingly easy (I have found in my own thinking) to slip from claimed biblical authority with functional biblical authority to claimed biblical authority with functional personal-framework authority. Anyone can extract a few texts and make ‘the Bible’ say what they want. The question is: whose delineation presents biblical truth with the rhythm and flavor of the Bible itself? We can sound clever, and quote texts, all the while lacking the aroma of truth that arises from a wise synthesis of all the Bible says. You can smell when someone’s really sitting under the Bible, the whole Bible, or not.

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One thought on “Smelling the Difference Between Those Who Sit Under and Those Who Stand Over”

  1. Roger says:

    I had the privilege of going to two different “evangelical” seminaries. One had the smell of standing over and one had the aroma of standing under. The “standing over” experience came with numerous well credentialed folk patting each other on the back for our fidelity to text, context, structure, etc (which are indeed important) – but at the end of the day, it just did not “smell” like the Bible.

    I wish I could articulate the difference but specifics are hard to parse and very subjective. There is indeed a difference in “feel” and, over the years, there has been a difference in the fruit produced from each. In my experience, the “standing over” approach tends to influence but not reproduce. Of, if it reproduces, it reproduces for only one generation.

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Justin Taylor


Justin Taylor is senior vice president and publisher for books at Crossway and blogs at Between Two Worlds. You can follow him on Twitter.

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