Professor Horner Interview

A couple of years ago I discovered Professor Horner’s Bible Reading System. It literally changed my life. Ok, to be specific, the Lord changed my life through the intense reading of His Word via Professor Horner’s system. Anyway, in the summer of 2010 I had the privilege of interviewing him. Previously, I published that interview in 3 installments. Today, in revisiting that interview, I have combined all three parts so that one can read the whole interview in one place. – Pastor Brett 


Grant Horner teaching a class at The Master’s College

August 31, 2010

Grant Horner is Associate Professor of English at The Master’s College in Santa Clarita, California. A husband and the father of three, Horner is best known to the world for developing a Bible reading plan that is spreading like wildfire. What is the plan? Read 10 chapters of the Bible per day from 10 different sections of Scripture. Professor Horner was gracious enough to sit down and answer 25 questions about his Bible reading system and himself.

Pastor Brett:I see you studied at both UNC-Chapel Hill and Duke. I didn’t know they would allow that. So, Tar Heels or Blue Devils?

Prof. Horner: I never paid attention to college sports. I taught at University of Alabama for 6 months before I realized that all the noise coming from the big round building on campus was crazed fans screaming ROLL TIDE. When I lived in North Carolina, I was doing PhD work at both UNC and Duke, the great archrivals. I figured out pretty quickly that it would be fun to put bumper stickers for BOTH schools on my car, as I went back and forth between the two campuses and parked. Yep — it was very humorous. Rednecks pulled up next to me at stoplights and called out “boy, you got yersef some kind problem or somthin’???” You could sometimes hear a gun cocking. Lucky I wasn’t shot.

Pastor Brett: You have a book that was recently released. Tell us a little bit about that venture.

Professor Horner: It was released in late June from Crossway and is called Meaning at the Movies: Becoming a Discerning Viewer. It is about theology and movies, but with a highly unusual approach. I’ve developed a new biblical theology of culture, and the book is based around these ideas. Over years of thinking about scripture and culture I’ve put together what is being called a groundbreaking approach to the issue, and it really opens up the world of what I call biblical-critical cultural discernment. It is written for a general readership, and I’m hoping Christians as well as nonbelievers will give it a look, and see what a powerful biblical approach to culture does for the mind, and for the Christian living in a pagan culture. The book has gotten excellent reviews and has been on the Amazon bestseller list since it came out. It is definitely stirring the pot for Christian thought about culture — what we do with it, how it works, and most importantly, where it comes from.

Pastor Brett: Let’s talk about your Bible-reading plan. How did you develop this system?

Professor Horner: As a brand new Christian the Bible was entirely new to me and very intimidating. I could not get a handle on it as quickly as I wanted to for the first few months. I was bewildered. I found a number of programs, but none of them seemed to work for me. There was one in a Chick Tract that caught my eye that had you reading a lot of books at once, and so I adapted it and built in all the other components as it now stands. I shared it with a few people over the years, but never thought about publicizing it. The original “plan” is still written in blue ink in my same Bible, from 1983!

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Believe, Then Love God and Make Disciples

Several years ago, it became all the rage for churches to adopt mission statements. When establishing mission statements, perhaps the most popular approach today is to emphasize the Great Commission and the Great Commandment. It’s not uncommon to hear mission statements like:

“A great commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission will produce a great church.”

“To glorify and honor God by fulfilling the mission the Lord gave His followers through the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) in the Spirit of the Great Commandment (Matthew 22:37-40).”

“We are a people committed to living and teaching the Great Commandment (loving God) and the Great Commission (loving others).”

This is all well and good, and I may be guilty of nitpicking here, but these statements can be misleading. You might be thinking, “How on earth can those mission statements be misleading?”

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