“One of [Karl] Barth’s great gifts was his cultivation of naivete. Whether he is being precritical or postcritical I cannot say for sure, but I love the way that Barth continues to be shocked, surprised, and filled with wonderment at biblical texts, all the way to the end of his life. In seminary courses in biblical interpretation we usually think of hermeneutics as a matter of acquiring increasing interpretive sophistication. However, Barth’s naivete enables him to see and hear things that we more serious adults miss…”
Conversations with Barth on Preaching (Abingdon, 2006)

How are you cultivating a “childlike” approach to Scripture in your ministry?

2 thoughts on “Wonder

  1. I would say studying is my main means of cultivaiting a childlike approach. After having worked in youth ministry and missions for ten years and before I started studying theology I felt like I pretty much knew it all. Constantly being challenged and seeing things I haven¨t seen before has now become an addiction – I need my wide eyed amazement!


  2. I read a booklet of sermons by Barth called “Deliverance to the Captives”. It was fascinating. Each of the sermons were delivered at a local prison where Barth was regularly asked to preach to the inmates. These sermons inspired me as I both preached on a monthly basis (I was a youth pastor for the last five years) and as I visited inmates at my local penitentiary through a Mennonite prisoner visitation program.


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