Peace Lutheran Church of Edgemont
Sunday, May 09, 2021
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God Filled Your Bible with Poems

I define poetry as an effort to share a moving

experience by using language that is chosen and

structured differently from ordinary prose.

Sometimes it rhymes. Sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it has a regular cadence. Sometimes it doesn’t. But almost always the poet has experienced something — something horrible or wonderful or ordinary — and he feels that he must share it. Using words differently from ordinary prose is the poet’s way of trying to awaken something of his experience (and perhaps even more) in the reader.

God Speaks in Poem

It has always boggled my mind that so much of the Bible is poetry. God inspired this, and he did not have to do it this way. How much of God’s inspired word is poetry? Leland Ryken— answers, One-third of the Bible is not too high an estimate. Whole books of the Bible are poetic: Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Song of Solomon. A majority of Old Testament prophecy is poetic in form. Jesus is one of the most famous poets of the world. Beyond these predominantly poetic parts of the Bible, figurative language appears throughout the Bible, and whenever it does, it requires the same type of analysis given to poetry. That is a lot of poetry language that is chosen and structured differently from ordinary prose.

God can raise the dead by any means he pleases. He can waken dull hearts to the reality of his beauty any way he desires. And one of the ways he pleases to do it is by inspiring his spokesmen to write poetry.

           Say It with a Poem

 For example, can we even begin to imagine what it felt like for the fathers and mothers of the children in Bethlehem to lose their little ones when Herod’s murder squad arrived and   slaughtered all of them under two years old? Perhaps not. But there was one year (inspired by the loss of a son in our church) when I said: I will try. And I will try with a poem. It has come to be called The Innkeeper.

I imagine a father who not only lost two sons that horrible night, but also his wife and his arm. He made room for Joseph and Mary. But he had no idea what it would cost him to embrace the Son of God. Jesus comes back to visit him just before going to the cross. The poem describes the meeting.