Best-selling author Robert Farrar Capon is at it again -- brilliantly and creatively teaching biblical truth in a fresh and provocative way.
In "Genesis: The Movie" Capon returns to the opening scenes of the biblical story, drawing new insights from the old and familiar by teaching us to view Scripture in a whimsical -- yet fruitful -- new way. Capon's goal is to get people out the habit of reading the Bible as a book of religious instructions and into the habit of watching it as a movie about history whose director is God.
There is nothing frivolous about Capon's approach. The lesson of watching a movie is that the audience never asks questions about whether the events depicted actually happened. Instead, viewers accept the history the director presents on the screen. Handling Scripture in the same way helps avoid becoming bogged down in "literalism, " be it fundamentalism, which insists that every scrap of the Bible be taken as literally true, or liberalism, which says that only those portions of the text that can be verified historically should be considered legitimate parts of the Bible.
Beyond its novel approach to Scripture, this book is also a genuine commentary on the first three chapters of Genesis. Every verse is given as it appears in the Hebrew, the Septuagint, and the Vulgate, as well as in the KJV, RSV, and NRSV versions of the Bible. In addition, Capon shows the interpretive freedom with which the church's fathers and mothers approached Scripture by making extensive use of Augustine's commentary on Genesis found in "Confessions" and "De Genesi ad Litteram." Nevertheless, this book is a much Capon the charming writer-teacher as it is Capon the scholar,characterized as it is by the personal, conversational, often witty style for which Capon is well known.
All in all -- between the poetry Capon so often quotes, the humor he can't resist, and the more (or less) straight theology that's his stock in trade -- "Genesis: The Movie" is a gem of a book that will please, and challenge, every reader.