Message from the chaplain - 17 February 2017

“Indeed, the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword.” – Hebrews 4:12a

St Mary’s is an Anglican Church school. But what does it mean to be Anglican? Being Anglican has an impact on how we approach the Bible. Different Anglicans would have different approaches but we find there are three “pillars” we usually have in common:

1. Scripture

The Bible (both Old and New Testaments) is our primary authority in learning about God so that we can draw near to God. This said, the Bible is not considered an authority on fi elds of information and knowledge that lie beyond its ambit; God’s revelation of knowledge of God and God’s creation extends beyond the Bible.

2. Scholarly tradition

Our interpretation of the Bible can be aided by referring to the works of scholars who have gone before us in studying the Bible.

3. Reason

God works through our intellect and through the Holy Spirit within us and in relationship with us, in aiding our understanding of God and God’s creation.

Some view “Context” as a fourth pillar:

4. Context

The context in which the Bible is read and in which the community of Anglican readers meet, has an infl uence on how the Bible is interpreted. God’s word is indeed a living word which speaks through, and into, different contexts, differently.

Acknowledgement: I’ve drawn extensively on Chapter 2 of Michael Ramsey’s book, “The Anglican Spirit” for the fi rst three pillars of this summary.

Revd Claudia Coustas