Sample Essay on J Miles – God a Biography

Jack Miles has applied a stylistic approach in making God’s narrative a unique piece of literature. Using the example of Hamlet in William Shakespeare’s works, Miles explains how an ordinary biography should appear; talk about the person as a man, what he said, what he did, and changes during his lifetime. Miles takes a different course in writing about the life of God whereby characterizes him only as a protagonist of a classic of world literature (Miles 8). He neither writes about God as an object of religious belief nor makes a statement about Him as an extra-literary reality. Further, he disregards the historians’ style of writing about God and the communities of Israelites and Jews that believed in Him (Miles 11).

According to Miles, God’s narrative is not continuous from the beginning to the last book of the Hebrew Bible since it has been broken off by suspense with testimonies and speeches related to God (Miles 15). Miles believes that the arrangement of the Hebrew Bible and the Old Testament have a special effect on the writing of the biography of God. He further discusses the ideas of Bible Scholars and Bible Critics whereby he has shown a special interest to critique the former. He says that scholars are often more attentive to immaterial details than critics. However, the scholars appear more valid when writing about authors of individual works (Miles 20).

The central idea Miles wants to pass is about God to be written in a biography through his question, can God’s life be written? He goes ahead to show us God’s life story can also be put in black and white although he chooses a different literary approach for it. But then, Miles acknowledges the fact that writing about God cannot be the same as writing about a character of a play like Hamlet.


Works Cited

Miles, Jack. God: A Biography. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1995. Print.

Miles, Jack. Christ: A Crisis in the Life of God. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2001. Print.