What is GotQuestions.org’s review of the Living Biblically TV series?

Living Biblically
Question: "What is GotQuestions.org’s review of the Living Biblically TV series?"

In early 2018, a TV series titled Living Biblically premiered. It is based on the book The Year of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs. In the series, a man named Chip Curry, a self-described lapsed Catholic, attempts to live his life strictly following the teachings of the Bible. His journey begins as a way for him to escape depression after the death of a close friend.

Other main characters in the series include Chip’s wife, Leslie Curry, who is a skeptical non-believer, along with Father Gene and Rabbi Gil, who serve as Chip’s consultants on how to fulfill his goal of living biblically.

This article will be updated as additional episodes are released. What follows is our evaluation of the episodes that have aired to-date.

The primary flaw of Living Biblically is the idea that everything in the Bible is how God would want us to live in this present day and age. Many of the difficulties Chip encounters are when he attempts to follow the Old Testament Law. Chip has to get new clothing because he can’t wear mixed fabrics (Leviticus 19:19; Deuteronomy 22:9–11). Chip wonders if he needs to stone a coworker who is committing adultery (Leviticus 20:10), and ends up pelting him with a rock.

There are many other examples of this misapplication of the Old Testament Law. The New Testament is clear that God does not expect, or desire, people to live by the Old Testament Law (Romans 10:4; Galatians 3:23–25; Ephesians 2:15). The Old Testament Law was a part of God’s covenant with the nation of Israel. In the Bible, God nowhere requires anyone outside of His covenant people to obey those laws. So, a primary aspect of Living Biblically is invalid. It is portraying someone attempting to live by rules that God does not require of us.

A second issue is how Chip continues to, at least somewhat, practice Catholicism. If his goal is to live biblically, why would he go to a priest for confession and light candles for his deceased friend when the Bible nowhere teaches those practices?

While Living Biblically does not necessarily denigrate the Bible or faith, it does focus on practices that make for humorous television, while ignoring far more important things the Bible teaches we should or should not do. Hopefully it will remain a humorous and not degrading look at an attempt at living biblically. And hopefully it will eventually deal with things that actually apply to us today.

Recommended Resource: The Quest Study Bible

Dig into this topic more with Logos Bible Software—get the free version now.
Related Topics:

How much influence is the Bible supposed to have on society?

What should we learn from Psalm 119?

Why should we read the Bible / study the Bible?

What is the key to applying the Bible to my life?

What is the sword of the Spirit?

Return to:

Questions about Apologetics and Worldview

Return to:

GotQuestions.org Home

What is GotQuestions.org’s review of the Living Biblically TV series?

Subscribe to our Question of the Week

Get our Questions of the Week delivered right to your inbox!