A new website has been launched by theologians to address the lack of Bible knowledge in the UK and US.
Contributors to Biblemesh include pastor and author Tim Keller, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary president Albert Mohler, and the former Archbishop of Nigeria, Peter Akinola.
Material on the website includes articles and videos aimed at giving people a better understanding of Scripture as one coherent story from Genesis to Revelation, rather than a series of facts and anecdotes.
BibleMesh's founders are alarmed at recent research pointing to a substantial lack of Bible awareness in the US and UK, despite many people owning or having access to a Bible.
Emmanuel A Kampouris, founder of BibleMesh and its sister site, Kairos Journal, said: "You can't be an educated person without some knowledge of the Bible, yet even many professed Christians lack a basic understanding of its teachings.
"Western civilisation is at risk of forfeiting the very tradition that brought her success and freedom. We hope the website will encourage people to a deeper commitment to biblical literacy and intimacy with the Lord."
The site is intended not only for non-believers outside the church who have had little contact with the Bible. The theologians are also hoping to reach churchgoers who own a Bible but don't necessarily know what's in it.
"I have been amazed at how little Bible knowledge is at play in the culture," said Dr Mark T Coppenger, of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, a member of the BibleMesh editorial board.
"Most have no idea of the biblical background for such common expressions as 'Adam's apple' and 'the blind leading the blind' or the way in which the Patriarchs and Apostles are nested in such common surnames as Jacobson and Johnson. And even those familiar with such figures as Noah and Paul, or with such events as the flood and the resurrection, often scratch their heads over basic theological concepts.
"BibleMesh fills in the details, covers the highlights and ties it all together."
An international team of over 60 scholars has contributed more than 300 articles and 200 videos for the website.
They are hoping the church will embrace BibleMesh as a discipleship tool for small groups, home school teachers, Christian schools and individuals wanting to know more about the Christian faith.
Pastors can receive a one-year subscription to "The Biblical Story" for free.
"I hope BibleMesh will be Sunday school curriculum 2.0," said Dr Gregory A Thornbury, of Union University, another member of the editorial board. "It's an update on what used to be done in Sunday school: taking Christians through the Bible."
BibleMesh is developing a biblical languages programme for Hebrew and Greek to be released in November.
On the web: www.biblemesh.com
Website targets Bible poverty in society - and in the church
Published 14 June 2012