The "operating instructions" view of the Bible dies hard. Ever since the invention of printing in the fifteenth century, the temptation to see the Bible as a book in the glove compartment has been growing. And now, given the popularity of biblical literalism, many people seem to believe that's the only way to look at it. So much so, that even when some of us do get a glimpse of what it really is -- namely, a story -- we read it as the wrong kind of story. We take it as the narration of occasional interventions by God in human affairs rather than as the mystery story of God's hidden presence as the Divine Suspect behind all of history. We see it as the record of a series of Band-Aids that God put on the wounds of the world, or of medicines that he injected into the body of creation, when in fact it's a record of the fingerprints he's left on times and places to clue us in to the mystery by which he, in the Person of his eternal Word, has always been drawing all of history to himself.
Robert Farrar CaponThe
Fingerprints of God