Pop songs about love are like a corkscrew for understanding the Bible. Songs like “Hooked on a Feeling” and “Don’t Pull Your Love Out on Me, Baby”, together with a zillion co-belligerants that are written and performed “In the Name of Love” (Thompson Twins), reveal the nature of love and loss, undoings and exaltings, and painful stasis and buoyed forward movement.

Now just imagine if professional New Testament scholars “parsed” pop songs the way they want to parse the Gospels. You can’t do it. Or rather, you don’t need to do it. “She Loves You” (The Beatles) is so obviously true. “Tracks of My Tears” is obviously true. “My Girl” is obviously true.

Just like the Bible, or most of it. When you read the Bible through the lens of acknowledged pain and the deficits that come from being emotional human persons — if you do that, the Bible makes sense. Doesn’t need parsing.

William Tyndale was right! The “simplest ploughboy” can understand the Bible, or at least enough of the Bible to make sense of life, and loss.

Read the Bible the way you listen to Motown. “Reach Out (I’ll Be There)” is true, to life. As is… Luke 24. LUV U (PZ)