Have you ever thought about the fact that our Bible was written by more than 40 authors over a period of 1500 years, and yet it tells one comprehensive story from Genesis to Revelation: His story. That’s amazing, isn’t it? 2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (NASB) There’s really only one Author, the Holy Spirit.
Have you also considered that it is this same Holy Spirit Who also inspires our works? What? No! I write fiction! What I write is not Scripture! That’s true, and we had better not ever forget that, but we are still a part of His story. There are so many people in this world who would never pick up a Bible, but they would read a novel about someone struggling with a problem that maybe has affected their own life. As Christian writers, it’s our job to point them to Christ.
When Candi Pullen and I wrote Not Guilty (2013) and Not Ashamed (due out in 2015), we set them in a church with the minister and his family as the main characters, so we were able to get away with using a lot more actual Scripture than the average Christian writer would. Preaching was totally in the context of the story, but most Christian writers don’t have that option. Still, the message has to be there, however subtly, if we’re true to our calling as His ambassadors. These are the “good works” that He equipped just for us. As a speaker at the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writer’s Conference said recently, “If it makes them ask even one question,” that may be its sole purpose.”
Hopefully, our fiction can do much more than that. I want my writing to bring readers to the cross. I think Biblical fiction may be the hardest genre of all to write. When I wrote Tokens of Promise (2013), one reviewer said she thought it was truly inspired by the Holy Spirit, but another thought it “strayed” from the Scriptures because it was far more than a simple paraphrase of what was already written, which much Biblical fiction seems to me to be. I wasn’t trying to copy what was already there. The Holy Spirit had already done a great job of that through Moses. I was trying to explain what I thought was a mysterious and misunderstood passage that many people have relegated to “a meaningless story of dubious morality that serves merely as a narrative break in the Joseph story.” Yes, I know it’s fiction. I don’t dispute that in the least, but if it brings one person to Jesus, the Messiah found in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, then it has done its job, and God will get all the glory! God bless you all.
Teresa Pollard is from Richmond, Virginia, and was saved at a young age. She has a Masters degree in English and Creative Writing from Hollins College, and has served as a Sunday School teacher and children’s worker for most of the last forty years. Married for forty years, she was devastated by divorce and the death of her youngest daughter, but God has blessed her with a new home and another grandson. She now resides in Dacula, Georgia. Her website is TeresaPollardWrites.com