Reading the Bible Supernaturally, by John Piper

The Bible is unlike any other book you have ever read because the Bible is a supernatural book with God as its author. Yet, the Bible is a book like any other book in the sense that it is indeed an actual book. It has been written to be read. It has been written to be understood.

Reading the Bible Supernaturally is the second book in a trilogy series by John Piper dealing with how the glory of God is given, revealed, and proclaimed through the written revelation of Scripture. In the first book, A Peculiar Glory, Piper seeks to demonstrate that God has authenticated Scripture in the same way He authenticated creation and Jesus, by revealing His glory in them. The heavens declare the glory of God and the glory of God was seen in Jesus Christ. The glory of God is there to see, however, not all see it in creation and not all saw it in Jesus when He was here on the earth.

In the same way, the glory of God is there in Scripture to be seen and marveled at and changed by, however, not all see it. The basis of Reading the Bible Supernaturally then is how to read the Bible without missing the glory. It is divided into 3 parts; the goal of reading the Bible, the supernatural act of reading the Bible, and the natural act of reading the Bible supernaturally. Piper argues and demonstrates from key texts of Scripture that we should approach the Bible with an understanding of its supernatural origin, as we read with humility and seeking to understand, the Spirit works to open our eyes to see the glory of God, and we read by paying careful attention and giving study to the text because it is through our natural reading that God works supernaturally.

Although Piper exegetes many passages, here are a couple of examples, one from the OT and one from the NT, that reinforce his argument. Psalm 119:18 says, “Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Your law.” 1 John 1:3 says, “That which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you…” Piper explains, “The glory they saw in Christ, we can see through their words.” P.28.

It is possible to read the entire Bible and never see the glory of God just as the Pharisees and others saw Jesus and yet never saw His glory. This is an incredibly helpful tool to inspire, encourage, and enable believers to read naturally and see the supernatural. Well worth your time. You won’t read the Bible the same, and you won’t be the same for having read it supernaturally!