How to read the Bible?

Open Book: A space to learn about the Bible together.

16. September 2020In EventsBy Karsten Risseeuw5 Minutes

Open Book is the name for a gathering of interested people, who want to explore the Bible. It is an idea and like a space created to meet and discuss things related to Christianity in general, and more specifically about the Bible. On a practical level, it has a simple structure: All are welcome who are interested. Each evening will have a topic. There will be room to discuss, and we want to benefit from the feedback of each participant. Just be who you are, as long as you are willing to listen and engage.

The intention to offer both an English and a German group did not work. No German-only speakers showed up on the first evening and this series will be in English only now. If you are interested in a German group, please let us know.

The last 3 meetings will be held on Zoom. These will be short 40 minute sessions each, with the possibility to exchange thoughts and questions through WhatsApp. If you are interested to join, please > ask the pastor to add you to the WhatsApp group for information.

A learning culture

Open Book tries to establish a learning culture. A learning culture is completely different from a teaching culture. This is not lecturing and it is not a dogmatic approach, but we try to include all interested people in a process gaining knowledge and understanding. It is more about participating as about consuming. You are expected to ask questions, not just to nod in agreement. Some people might have knowledge, others have questions, but we are all learning. To create a learning culture means, that we acknowledge that everyone is in a process of learning. In this process we want to support each other (something the apostle Paul wrote about in Ephesians 4:15-16).

Series: How to read the Bible?

The first series is an introduction to the Bible. The goal is not only to learn about the Bible, but also to learn directly from the Bible. We have to open the Book and read, ask questions, consider different views and learn to interpret. By doing this together you will quickly gain confidence to read the Bible yourself.

Only when you dive into the Bible itself, you will be able to learn and experience the richness of the book. It is not enough to get some knowledge presented, but we can start an adventure together. The adventure is not only in listening, but in participating, evaluating what you read together. We all need a listening heart.

It is surprising to discover that quite a lot of information is contained in the Bible itself. It is not that you need a lot of information before you can start reading. Simply start! However, there are some key topics and basic understandings that will greatly help you to get started yourself. A few of these topics are covered in the series “How to read the Bible?”.

Series of six evenings:

  • The purpose of the Bible What is it all about?
  • Inductive bible study How to gain confidence in reading and understanding.
  • Bible translations Why are there different translations and which should I use?
  • On Zoom: Everything is for us, but not everything is about us Understanding where we stand today.
  • On Zoom: Cultural differences Figurative language and other cultural issues.
  • On Zoom: It's an ongoing story Learning as a culture.


Dates: Between September 15, 2020 and December 1st, 2020. See the Calendar.
Time: 19:00–21:00h
Location: Kirchgemeindehaus Lachen, St. Gallen. The last 3 meetings will be held on Zoom. See the Calendar.
Speaker: Scotty Williams (first topic), Karsten Risseeuw (rest of the topics)
Language: English.

There is a WhatsApp group linked to this series. Latest updates or questions can be shared within the group. Contact Karsten to learn more.