The Bible as History and Theology

QUESTION: Would you please explain more on the differences between Biblical history and theology? Is it difficult as an historian to keep these separate in your personal beliefs? RESPONSE: I was all set to write up an answer to this question, but then as I was plotting it out, it occurred to me that I was just going to say what I had already said in the Excursus to the first chapter of my Bible Intro. And so I’ve decided just to give that. I hope you don’t mind! If there are further questions from anyone, or need for clarification, do let me know. Here’s what I tell my student-readers at the beginning of the book, to explain the difference between a theological (or confessional) approach to the Bible and a historical approach. __________________________________________________________________________ EXCURSUS Most of the people who are deeply interested in the Bible in modern American culture are committed Jews or Christians who have been taught that this is a book of sacred texts, Scripture, unlike other books.  For many of these [...]