“This is a hard saying, who can listen to it?”
I saw a Facebook post that said this:
• THE BIBLE IS CLEAR: Moabites are bad. They were not to be allowed to dwell among God’s people (Dt. 23). BUT THEN comes the story of “Ruth the Moabite,” which challenges the prejudice against the Moabites.
• THE BIBLE IS CLEAR: People from Uz are evil (Ker. 25). BUT THEN comes the story of Job, a man from Uz who was the “most blameless man on earth.”
• THE BIBLE IS CLEAR: No foreigner or eunuchs allowed (Dt. 23). BUT THEN comes the story of an African eunuch welcomed into the church (Acts 8).
• THE BIBLE IS CLEAR: God’s people hated Samaritans. BUT THEN Jesus tells a story that shows not all Samaritans were bad.
• THE STORY MAY BEGIN with prejudice, discrimination, & animosity, but the Spirit moves God’s people towards openness, welcome, inclusion, acceptance, and affirmation.
It was shared with this introduction, “A little inconsistency here until you consider the Bible is a library of stories and not an owner’s manual. The Bible often begins with ‘shall not’…Always!!”
There is lots of this type of thinking out there; and at face value, it seems quite reasonable to “help” interpret the Bible. Actually, for the first 44 years of my life, I totally disregarded this book in part because of stuff like this. Mostly, however, I saw people go to church week after week as part of their social routine. I wondered why, that if everything that was said during communion was true, why weren’t people in the congregation taking to the streets to share this good news. I looked at the priest and thought to myself, “Why isn’t HE excited about any of this.” It was then that I walked away completely form all that B.S. Indeed, it was baloney because the vast majority of people go to church for selfish reasons, not to genuinely worship God as his people.
That’s pretty harsh, you might say. It is, but it’s true; and this Facebook post above is a perfect example why. This particular church is more concerned about inclusion than truth that it has abandoned the basic teaching of God. It has turned a blind eye to sexual sin for so long that it now sees aberrant behavior as good and even promotes it. They fly under the banner of “social justice” forgetting that God is the one who makes the rules regarding righteousness and justice. In the end, this church denies the deity of Christ.
It is tempting to brush this post aside as one more loud-mouth yelling to the wind, but it’s not quite that simple. You see, there is a believability to it that can ensnare one’s children. For that matter, it can ensnare even believers. No, one must not ignore a post like this. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting we argue with every objectionable post we see. What I am suggesting is that one understand your bible enough to rebuke it when necessary. Trust me, you will be faced with challenges such as this.
Honestly, I’ve heard lots of different theologies tackle topics like this. I’m not a degreed theologian, but I have been exposed to enough to have a basic understanding of most schools of thought. They are actually not that complicated when you really look at them. All start with a basic set of assumptions and build from there. As their professed faith is expounded, one can examine it against the observable world and make judgment to its validity.
In my opinion, Reformed theology best fits the human condition. It’s not pleasant, and few people will even consider it. In fact, most people are quite hostile to it. I find this quite interesting since I find it to be the most liberating of all. And, there is no need to discount or disregard anything of the bible.
Tomorrow, God willing, I hope to tackle this Facebook post. I find it incredibly deceptive and evil to the core. It is the same type of cunning the serpent used in the Garden with the same intent – to distrust God so that your eyes may be “opened”; that you can be like him, knowing good and evil. I tell you what, it sends shivers through me thinking about it.
The good news is that one can easily disprove their argument. You may not persuade them, but those with ears to hear will hear and understand. Stay tuned.
Father, teach us. Amen.
Copyright © 2020 Scott Powers