I love the Bible. I don’t say this just as a Licensed Lay Minister, only focusing on the ethical and spiritual elements. I found my faith by dipping into bits of Matthew’s Gospel from an old Bible with a foreword from Billy Graham. The supernatural power is so strong with the Good Book, that critics are willing to remove any mention of it, almost as if fearing the words themselves would gain more converts to religion rather than, well, being religion critics.
Reading it sometimes feels like a treasure hunt: Linking up the Old Testament and the New, understanding the different references, and so on. It can be a wonderful history lesson: We can start to understand ancient non-Israelite cultures through the Old Testament, and something about life in the Roman Empire in the New. It can be read out loud, especially the King James Version: It was meant to be read for everyone to hear.
It always bothers me when some of the issues people have with the Bible. They either make God’s inspired Word into God, or that the Bible is out of date. Both of these ideas have been used by critics, as if both ideas are believed by all believers (n.b. You’ll notice a lot of critics using the word ‘they’ when talking about religion, as if I am living, working, and believing as you are. Weird).
The Bible isn’t God: It is the Spirit of God inspiring dozens of writers throughout the ancient world, who recorded what God is telling everyone for eternity as well as in that moment in time. The way the Church uses it has changed thanks to the printing press and increased literacy throughout the developed world. Reading it regularly is part of living life with Jesus as Lord. We must be careful in placing the Bible in its right place in the Christian life. We must ensure God – the inspiration, editor, narrator, and lead character of the Bible – is always our guide, with prayer, fellowship, and through following the ways of Jesus Christ.
The Bible is never out of date: If we read the verses and believe we follow them verbatim, then we think God lives in a book. But with study, support, and good Sunday church preaching, we see much, much more. We might see texts against witchcraft (Exodus 22:18, Leviticus 11:31), and not see that the bigger emphasis is holy living (1 Peter 1:15, Phillipians 4:8). We can see the wars mapped out in the Old Testament and not see God of Justice (Job 37:23-24, 2 Corinthains 7:11).
I’m standing up for the Bible as a beacon of enlightenment, a turning point for each human being, and a global Word towards Jesus Christ, Our Saviour, Our Lord, Our Friend.
- What bible verses can you say to help someone who is dying (wiki.answers.com)
- When do you here the Bible during Mass (wiki.answers.com)
- Follow A Reading Plan (Part I) (devotionalinsights.com)