Did you notice the moon last night? It is nearly a full moon and as I was driving home it lit up the sky. But how do you describe the moon? What does it look like? Well someone has described it as looking like a silver medallion. A silver medallion is a a special silver coin (money) it is white / silver colour and round.
When you look at the moon it is also white/ silver colour and round. So the silver medallion helps us describe the moon – it is a metaphor. A metaphor is when you compare two things that are very different, but have some characteristics in common. We use metaphor a lot in our language to help explain things to other people. The Bible uses many metaphors and it is sometimes the only way we can begin to understand what God is like. That is why Jesus is so important to us, because he lived on earth he was able to explain through the example of his life what God is like.
Metaphors tend to work well only in their original language – or that is what myself and my some of my other chaplain colleagues think… and it may explain why some Deaf people find understanding the Bible difficult, because it is written in English.. and their first or preferred language is British Sign Language. What do you think?