This article explores how Native Americans have received the Bible. Over the centuries some Indians have been inspired by the Bible, and some have been repelled by its long-standing place in colonization. The Christian invaders in the New World carried the Bible in their minds. It served as their inspiration, their justification, and their frame of reference as they encountered Indigenous peoples. In effect, the Bible was the template for exploration, conquest, identification of selves and others. The Christian invaders brought along or produced physical Bibles, which served their catechetical purposes, and in time they began to translate the Bible—in whole and in part—into American Indian languages. Therefore this article illustrates that to the present day Native Americans continue to receive the Bible actively and variously, attempting to fit it to their unfolding cultural stories. Ultimately, it has not lost its potency, nor have they lost their power to consider it on their own terms.

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