As we think about the Bible in relation to Christian writing, we must define Scripture in terms of the King James or Authorized Version. The literary influence of other translations through more than three centuries has been but a drop in the bucket compared with that of the King James Bible. Perhaps the Revised Standard Version or some other new translation may eventually supplant the King James Bible. If so, the loss from the literary point of view will be very great, as some versions of inferior nobility and vigor of language replace the book that is literature’s chief glory.

Turning now to the Christian writer, we need first of all to look closely at the objective, “Christian.” If we limit our discussion to the evangelical segment of Christianity, let us be careful to avoid any parochialism of outlook. Evangelicals are not the only Christians. There are those who share with us a firm belief in historic, supernatural Christianity, who worship Christ as Lord and Saviour, who take a high view of Scripture, yet who may not use all our terminology and who hold a view of the church and of the ministry different from ours. They, too, are Christians; and from some of them we have much to learn, especially when it comes to writing.

What Is A Christian Writer?

Let us grant that the writer whom we are considering is a Christian, a regenerated child of God, committed to the evangelical doctrines of Scripture. The question is, What do we really mean when we talk about a “Christian writer?” We might say simply that we mean Christians who write. That is much too broad a definition. The other day I asked the editor of a leading Bible study magazine, “What’s the matter with Christian writing today?” His answer was candid, if not entirely ...

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