What if a person cannot read or is illiterate? Are they expected to learn the Bible to use as armor and learn about God?


James 1:22

ESV - 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

Clarify Share Report Asked May 20 2018 1464387197 Nilsa Rodriguez

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
For the first fifteen hundred years of the Christian era (prior to the invention of the printing press), the primary means of dissemination of the gospel was through preaching and word-of-mouth. (In addition, I would think that a high percentage of the population would have been illiterate.) And yet, this did not prevent Christianity's spread throughout the known world (and beyond). In fact, one of the primary motivators of trans-oceanic exploration was the desire to reach those who had never heard of Christ or the Bible.

Also, modern non-print means of access to Christianity have expanded greatly through media such as television and radio. And wherever Christianity is present, there should be churches where the Bible is proclaimed, discussed, and studied.

Those who seek to follow Christ; to bring others to Him; or to learn about Christianity today should similarly want to increase their knowledge of God and His word. This should still serve as a motivation (both for those who are illiterate and those who seek to minister to them) to learn or teach the necessary skills to make that possible. (In fact, I once participated in a training program for aspiring literacy tutors (Laubach Literacy) that had arisen and been organized because of the specific desire of the founder (who was a missionary) to allow people to read the Bible.)

May 21 2018 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Zachary Campbell
Whether a person is expected to learn the Bible if they are illiterate is a complex question with no universally accepted answer. Here are some different perspectives to consider:

**Traditional View:**

* This view emphasizes the importance of **personal reading and study** of the Bible for spiritual growth. James 1:22 is often cited as evidence for this, suggesting that simply hearing the Word is not enough.
* This perspective may hold that learning to read, even for adults, is crucial for accessing the full depth and richness of Scripture.

**Alternative View:**

* This view acknowledges that not everyone has the ability or resources to learn to read. It emphasizes the **broader ways** people can engage with the Bible, such as:
* **Listening to sermons and teachings**
* **Participating in oral storytelling and discussion groups**
* **Experiencing the Bible through art, music, and drama**
* This perspective argues that God's message can be received and understood in **various formats**, and that literacy is not the only path to faith and growth.

**Important Considerations:**

* Regardless of literacy level, **faith and understanding can come through diverse means**.
* **Coercing someone to learn to read** solely for religious purposes might not be productive or respectful.
* **Accessibility is crucial**. Providing resources for learning to read, audio recordings of scripture, and various teaching methods can help ensure everyone has the opportunity to engage with the Bible in a meaningful way.
* **Ultimately, the individual's personal journey and relationship with God** is what matters most.

**Additional Notes:**

* It's important to remember that **James 1:22** was written in a specific context** for a specific audience. Its interpretation and application can vary across different cultures and religious traditions.
* This is a sensitive topic with diverse perspectives. It's best to approach discussions with **respect, understanding, and an open mind**.

February 23 2024 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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