Guest Post by Robert Sagers
Today is a big day for our friends over at BibleMesh, for today is the day of their official site launch.
BibleMesh editorial team member Gregory A. Thornbury, the Dean of the School of Theology and Missions at Union University, was kind enough to answer a few questions about BibleMesh, about its origin and purpose and goals.
RES: What is BibleMesh, and what distinguishes it from other Web sites devoted to the study of the story of Scripture?
GAT: BibleMesh is an online educational platform designed to help people learn the comprehensive story of Scripture and apply it to all aspects of life.
It began with the realization that the Bible is the infallible Word of God and the central book in the history of Western civilization. The basis of the faith of billions of people around the globe, it has inspired countless works of art, literature, and charity. Yet many people express frustration over their attempts to understand the Bible. This may be due to the unstructured manner in which they have encountered the Scriptures. They have picked up a smattering of information over the years and know certain parts of God’s Word better than others, but they still do not see how the story fits together.
And yet, when we open the pages of Scripture, we discover One God, One Book, and One Story. BibleMesh aims to help people understand the big picture as well as important facts of the Bible—it situates the entire biblical narrative in light of the Gospel. Moreover, It contains the first comprehensive online educational tool designed to help achieve biblical literacy, combining a social networking platform which will allow pastors and church leaders to host their own online Bible studies and to contribute their own resources. Most importantly, it utilizes the latest memory retention technology to help people remember what they have studied. The first BibleMesh resource is “The Biblical Story,” a course that presents Scripture as a cohesive narrative of God’s work in the world from Genesis to Revelation. Forthcoming content will include courses such as “Biblical Languages” (Greek and Hebrew) and “The Bible and the Public Square.”
The site is also being translated into seven languages.
RES: How did you get involved in the project, and what was the experience like?
GAT: I had been on the editorial board of the Kairos Journal for several years, and our publisher, Emmanuel Kampouris, wanted to create an educational site to combat the plague of biblical illiteracy. I was assigned to begin the process of content creation for the project, and assembled a team to begin the work.
Simply put, BibleMesh wouldn’t have existed without the vision of Mano Kampouris, who is the founder and publisher of BibleMesh and the retired Chairman and CEO of American Standard.
Throughout his years as a business executive, Mr. Kampouris became burdened to see the Church renew its historic role as a prophetic voice and moral conscience of culture. In 2002, he began the Kairos Journal, an online resource designed to equip pastors and church leaders to engage with public square issues. BibleMesh extends this vision by providing a comprehensive online educational platform designed to help people achieve biblical literacy.
It has been deeply rewarding work with the team of scholars, pastors, and theologians who have contributed hundreds of articles and video teachings to the site. Godly pastors like Tim Keller, Mark Dever, Lig Duncan, and Alistair Begg have helped us along the way. Scholars from a wide array of evangelical institutions have made the content engaging, substantive, helpful, and Gospel centered.
RES: How will you know that BibleMesh has been a success? In other words, what are you hoping to see accomplished through the site?
GAT: Success for us will be seeing men and women becoming reengaged with the joy of knowing Christ from Genesis to Revelation. Success would be to hear from our users that they are seeing in fresh ways how both Old and New Testaments are Christian Scripture—that all points of truth “mesh” together in the good news about the Lord Jesus.
Specifically, we would love to see pastors and other leaders signing up Sunday school classes, Bible studies, and new believers classes to see the unity of the the biblical story.
Long term, we trust with God’s help that we will be an online portal for all kinds of connection points for learning Scripture and applying it to every avenue of contemporary life.