A.J. Jacobs was an agnostic before undertaking a yearlong journey to obey every rule in the Bible as literally as possible. A year later, he's still an agnostic, but [supposedly] a more reverent one and a lot more thankful.
Jacobs decided to take the extraordinary journey of following all the rules in the Bible – everything from the well-known mandate of loving thy neighbor to the Old Testament rule of not trimming a beard. Jacobs carried around a stapled list of the more than 700 rules and prohibitions identified in the Bible throughout an entire year.
His experience is written in the upcoming book The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible, which releases on Oct. 9.
The two most difficult rules to follow were "the sins we commit every day like lying, gossiping and coveting," he said, and rules that were hard to play out in modern life such as stoning adulterers. Although he tried to live as much of a sin-free life as possible, he acknowledged that he still sinned.
"I was able to cut down on my coveting maybe 40 percent, but I was still a coveter," he said, noting that he lives in New York where there's a lot of coveting. "I miss my sin-free life," he told Newsweek after the end of the experience, "but I guess I was never sin free."
(HT: Christian Post)