God’s Deeper Purposes

“Living traditions constantly interpret their canonical texts. That is what makes fundamentalism – text without interpretation – an act of violence against tradition. In fact, fundamentalists and today’s atheists share the same approach to texts. They read them directly and literally, ignoring the single most important fact about a sacred text, namely that its meaning is not self-evident. It has a history and an authority of its own. Every religion must guard against a literal reading of its hard texts if it is not to betray God’s deeper purposes.”

The Great Partnership, p. 254