Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Why you should not give up with the bible.

The bible has come under a lot of fire of late. It seems that since the day that it was first put together there has been no shortage of people out to discredit and destroy it. Yet the latest attack on it is unique in that it has not been instigated by those who have sought to control people through religion (think of all the copies that were burned in the middle ages because they were not in Latin) or by those who scoff at the existence of a creator. Rather; what makes the situation today unique is that it is from within the church that some people are growing disillusioned with it.

And I am not just referring to people debating whether things like the first 11 chapters of Genesis should be taken literally or not or whether we need to rethink how we approach certain portions of scripture (particularly the violent parts). What I am referring to is the idea that we no longer need it because Christ is in us or the idea that too much of the bible simply does not look like Jesus. Granted, for most of the last 2000 years the majority of the church never had their own copies of the bible in their own languages or would have possessed the ability to read it for themselves; but somehow they still managed to grow spiritually. Even today the church seems healthiest in areas like China where there is a shortage of bibles in many areas. It is clear that the only thing the Church needs to live and grow is Jesus. Yet scripture is still extremely precious.

Why are the scriptures valuable to the church? They are valuable because they point us to him, Jesus himself said they testify of him (John 5:39). From the very first to the very last verse Christ is revealed. Consider Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Didn't Jesus tell us that he was the beginning (Revelation 21:6, 22:13)? You could read Genesis 1:1 as “In Jesus, God created the heavens and the earth” and you would not be theologically wrong. John makes a similar statement at the start of his gospel.  

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.

The last verse in the bible requires no explanation.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

Yes there are parts between Genesis 1:1 and Revelation 22:21 where Jesus and the message he shared may not be so obvious. If some parts of it do not make sense, hold on to what you know to be true about God as revealed through Jesus. Let's not throw the baby out with the bath water. We are not to deify the book as some have but if we learn to read it correctly; it is still profitable for reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness.  

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