Spring 1945 • Vol. VII No. 2 Book ReviewsApril 1, 1945 |

Brief Comment: The Bible and the Common Reader

The Bible And The Common Reader by Mary Ellen Chase. Macmillan. $2.50. Those of us who are happy neither with the anti-religous zest of yesterday nor with the neo-religious indignity of today turn with interest to any writer who treats religious documents sensibly. Miss Chase does. Her book-by-book commentary on the Bible is a monument of moderation. She paraphrases the text, she provides necessary background information, and she tells us what she enjoys and how much. This kind of thing would doubtless be a slight service to the study of any other great work but in the service of the Bible it is a rare and welcome job. For the Bible is the most misread of books. It is not only fundamentalists who cannot read it rationally. Almost nobody can. The book has been read with such stupid prejudices for or against that one can scarcely be surprised that it is hardly read at all any more. The Bible is—who would deny it?—the greatest of classics; it is also the greatest stumbling-bloc

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