This chapter explores how the Quakers’ use of the Bible has developed, recognizing changes both in the Friends movement and in its historical and cultural settings. Friends’ approaches to Scripture have varied widely as they have responded over time to the influences of the Enlightenment, revivalism, fundamentalism, Modernism, and other factors. The chapter describes how Quakers have viewed the authority and inspiration of the Bible and how they have held the importance of the Bible in tension with the inward teaching of Christ, whom they refer to as the ‘Word of God’. The chapter also contrasts various forms of Bible study with reading the Bible with empathy as a fruit of Quaker spirituality.
Published in The Oxford Handbook of Quaker Studies Edited by Stephen W. Angell and Ben Pink Dandelion. Oxford University Press. Posted with permission. http://www.oxfordhandbooks.com/view/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199608676.001.0001/oxfordhb-9780199608676-e-012