Tag Archives: Bible as Literature


The Bible as Literature

I enjoy reading the Bible not only as a Christian, but as an avid reader and writer.  The pages abound with literary devices including metaphors, similes, contrasts, and parallels.

Jesus spoke of his longing to protect the children of Jerusalem as “a hen gathering her chicks under her wings.” (Luke 13:34) He infuriated the hypocritical Pharisees by telling them they were like beautiful whitewashed mausoleums, with rotting bones inside. (Matthew 23:27)

Isaiah wrote about:
Earth wearing out “like a garment.”  (Isaiah 51:6)
“The bread of adversity and the water of affliction.” (Isaiah 30:20)
People drawing sin along with “cords of deceit.” (Isaiah 5:18)

Paul spoke of our bodies as “earthly tents” and ” jars of clay.” (II Corinthians 5:1, 4:7) Peter wrote of the devil “prowling as a roaring lion.” (I Peter 5:8) The Christian journey is likened to running a race in an arena filled with spectators. (Hebrews 12:1)

Job spoke of God “wrapping up the waters in clouds.” (Job 26:8)
About himself Job said, “I’m nothing but skin and bones: I have escaped with only the skin of my teeth.” (Job 19:20)

Amos spoke of a “famine of hearing the words of the Lord.” (Amos 8:11) Jeremiah described Israel’s turning away from God as “forsaking the spring of living water and digging broken cisterns that cannot hold water.” (Jeremiah 2:13)

Hosea spoke about lawsuits “springing up like poisonous weeds.”  (Hosea 10:4) James said that doubters are “like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.” (James 1:6)

Many familiar sayings that originated in the Bible have become clichés and can be found in lists on the internet. As for the trite saying, “God helps those, who help themselves,” you’ll find that in Hezekiah 6:1. (Let me know when you find the book of Hezekiah.)

Familiar Sayings from the Bible

Earn something by the sweat of your brow.” (Genesis 3:19)
A man after my own heart. (Acts 13:22)
Out of the mouths of babes. (Psalm 8:2)
Pride goes before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18)
A time and place for everything. (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we will die. (Ecclesiastes 8:15; Isaiah 22:13)
A drop in the bucket. (Isaiah 40:15)
Rise and shine. (Isaiah 60:1)
A leopard cannot change his spots. (Jeremiah 13:23)
Go the extra mile. (Matthew 5:41)
United we stand. Divided we fall. (Matthew 12:25, 26)
The blind leading the blind. (Matthew 15:14)
A little birdie told me. (Ecclesiastes 10:20)
The powers that be. (Romans 13:1)
List taken from  http://tinyurl.com/m35gu2x

Martha Hawn VanCise©2015 www.signpostsonhightrails.com