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Denison Journal of Religion

Abstract

This article links the significance of the process of crafting and receiving stories to a greater understanding of religious lives. The influence that stories have on life, Thornburg claims, cannot be understated.

People believe and perform stories, interpreting their meanings and applying them to their own lives. Thornburg claims that this is particularly true of religious stories. She makes this point through an examination of biblical narratives. It is the multiplicity inherent in stories that makes them such a vital source. The many forms of the biblical stories are so important because it is through examination of the many differences in the narrative that leads to a deeper understanding of the nature of god.

Narratives do not often provide simple answers, but this is one of the strengths of studying the bible through a literary and narrative conscious perspective. The contradictions and complications lend narrative its staying power, and prevent it from losing itself in its original context.

The author concludes that the power of the narrative in finding meaning and timeless power is such that Biblical study should often make use of the narrative lens.

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