Strand: Scripture, Israel and Jesus (SIJL3-4E1)
Levels 3 and 4
Scripture is the living voice of God that speaks through a variety of literary forms that convey the original author’s intention at the time.
Differentiate the style and author’s purpose from among a selection of literary forms contained in Scripture, speaking to their lives and their world.
From the perspective of faith, the Bible is more than a fixed library. It is a library of books containing many different literary styles including myth, history, legend, dreams, poetry, humour, irony, proverbs, parables and narratives. Tradition holds the Bible as the inspired Word of God. Scripture is interpreted in order to make meaning of its place and purpose in the world. The Bible has an oral tradition that was written down in order to capture the voice of God to give meaning to various events and experiences for the lives of the People of God. Knowledge of the cultural, historical and geographical context aids in understanding texts from Scripture.
For people of faith, it is a living document that is always brought into dialogue with the times in which it is encountered.
Examples of literary styles found in the various books of the Old and New Testament:
- myth: Genesis
- fable: Judges
- history: Joshua, Maccabees
- legend: Exodus
- poetry; Song of Songs, Psalms
- proverbs: Proverbs
- parables: Matthew, Luke, Mark
- narratives: Exodus
- letters: Ephesians: Romans, Corinthians, Galatians
- The Catholic Youth Bible: Second International Edition, Saint Mary’s Press.