Over the course of the Feast of Tabernacles, one of my friends in my local church congregation sent me an e-mail request asking if I would take it upon myself to write a complete explanation of biblical symbols from the perspective of the Church of God, since a great many of the lists that exist include a lot of pagan information. Seeing this as a particularly massive project, I thought to go about it in a different matter than I go about many of my projects in some respects, while similar to my usual approach in others. As is typical of my modest proposals involving church matters , I only make proposals when other people are involved. I can, and may, write about a great many symbols on my own, but since the writer had in mind something far more ambitious than this, I would like the help of others, and so I am writing about this as a modest proposal. For example, I once wrote a modest proposal encouraging the development and production of sermon collections for speakers as a way of encouraging the dissemination of their messages, and while few people seem to have heard or heeded that request, I created a free to download collection of my own messages at least. Something of the same light is intended here.
What is it that I seek to do? For one, what I am looking to do is provide a reasonably complete collection of the Church of God writings about biblical symbolism. This is, by necessity, a task that will require a great deal of editing as well as compilation work that is generally beyond my normal efforts. Some biblical symbols are small and could be tackled somewhat easily, but some of them are quite massive in scope. Even in the more modest ones there is the opportunity for considerable depth, like the 153 fish that were caught by Peter upon Jesus’ advice, to give but one example. It is easy to see this sort of series lasting hundreds of posts and even multiple volumes in collected material.
What sort of help am I looking for? While I can certainly write from my own perspective very easily and fluently enough, I do not feel confident about being knowledgeable in the breadth of perspectives that the Church of God has concerning various biblical symbols and how they are connected to other aspects of God’s word. The proliferation of different groups encourages the development of many different layers of interpretation based on the individual focuses and interests of the given interpreters and makes the enforcement of common hermeneutical principles (rules of interpretation) a daunting task. Certainly I do not wish to write only from my own personal perspective but to create something that is more broadly held, and to do that I need help. For one, I want to know what symbols people want to know more about, and I openly invite commentary, either delivered publicly or privately, concerning the interpretation of symbols, which will lead to future entries or the editing of existing entries to provide additional information that is found, with attribution and credit to those who provide the information.
How do I plan to accomplish this task? Very gradually. I am not a man who writes with a great deal of time, and so I expect that this will be a long-term project. Even the more limited proposal by my friend for a look at the symbolism of Daniel and Revelation is a lengthy project that will require a great deal of writing, and the larger task of writing biblical symbolism is one that will take a lot more time. Here is what I propose to do, therefore: I will write this as a series of posts under the series, Symbols of the Bible, with its own blog post that contains a collection of all the material written to date, organized in a systematic fashion. If you want this project to go forward in a timely fashion, then the following things can be done: suggest what biblical symbols you want me to talk about, especially on my “Suggestion Box” page or on the comments sections to posts within the project. View and share and comment on my posts, for the more discussion and the more viewing that is done, the more I will be encouraged to write in the series, and therefore the faster it will get done. That is all, for now.
 See, for example: