Fast and Loose with the Bible

“You can use the Bible to prove anything you want!”

Have you ever heard that one?  I bet you have.  It is one of the most common criticisms of the Bible from non-believers, and sadly from a fair number of Christians too. The real question is, are they right?

As I see it, the answer is both yes and no.

It would be “yes” for anybody who doesn’t care about giving an accurate representation of the Bible.  If all a person wants to do is find something that backs up their position and they just quote the first thing they come across because it sounds like it’s backing them up then that criticism is right.  If you are ever tempted to do this, you might want to be careful; how embarrassing it would be if it turned out you were quoting SATAN! (I saw that once)

Context can be really frustrating when you are looking for something to prove a point and you bother to pay attention to it.  Frequently you might find that the Bible teaches the other guy’s position.

Obviously, that brings us to the “no” part of the answer.  No, you cannot get the Bible to provide you with proof for just any old thing you want if you are going to be accurate about it.  Sadly, many don’t seem to care.

I wonder how much damage people have done to the Gospel by playing fast and loose with the Bible.  Here’s a different example:

Everybody has their own interpretation of the Bible.

I think this one is worse than the first, probably because there is a lot of truth in it.  When you stop and think about it, this one is almost as destructive as saying that everybody can find their own way to Heaven.

Like the guy who runs the place has nothing to say about it!?  Are you serious?

If we Christians really believe that the Bible is God’s revelation to mankind, then it seems to me that maybe we had best take it seriously.  Maybe we should put effort into knowing what we are talking about, and maybe we shouldn’t agree with such ridiculous statements just because everybody else goes along.

Just a thought. 🙂

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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8 Responses to Fast and Loose with the Bible

  1. Floating on Tiptoes says:

    I couldn’t agree more, which is why the art of hermeneutics should be learnt and practised by all Christians. Context, context, context.

  2. paulfg says:

    Beginning to explore a growing question in my relationship with The Lord. Should we accept the bible as we would a text book, a transcript, static and petrified. Or, as well as context and knowledge, is it necessary to add the “context” of what has not been recorded. Wondering if we assume the former it may be like loving through reading a newspaper rather than meeting and knowing the living real being. Just a thought. 😊

  3. nrichmyleads says:

    Hey Don, that editor of yours is getting you in trouble again, you might look at the sentence that starts “Like the guy” towards the end, it seems to me you left off the last word “it” My brain supplied it but then I am on your side. Paul fg does the fg stand for “for God”? I agree with you that a relationship with God and His only begotten son is indeed a very large part of what the new testament is all about. And yes most people have a lot to learn about them both because so little of the Bible is taught accurately as is demonstrated by the two “common knowledge” statements above that do not reflect scripture, but alas do reflect what seminaries teach their students. I did not graduate from one but in my College classes on the Word, one of my professors stated that he hoped by the end of the semester he would have succeeded in dissuading us that anything about the Word could be known for certain. He then proceeded to try and convince us that the record of the word could not be trusted as to who had what recorded as a result of God inspiring them. The books of Moses were a result of a committee over the 3000 years of rabbinical criticism and that just because God would inspire a different perspective to be recorded that this was evidence of a section being written at a different time and different theology. Oh ye of little faith who has bewitched you so?
    As Bible scholars compile and gather text from all over the world that date back thru the centuries and reflect many different sources the one thing that stands out is how consistently the text has been preserved with the main differences in the spellings of the names of places and people. God stays the same from Eternity to eternity, Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. (he got a new body when he was raised from the dead that was a big change from his mortal life.) The Word declares that it contains everything that pertains to life and Godliness. that is why the answer to the question why didn’t God give us more details about Jesus as a youngster is simply it does not pertain. That is the same answer to many other great theological questions. How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? It does not pertain, we do not need to know! If God’s word tells us we need to know, if it does not then we don’t. Keep it simple. There is a purpose to everything that belongs to the God inspired Word. The things the Bible has in it that do not belong were added at some point or another to support some scribes unbelief that the text was accurate. I point out a number of these corrections that should be made to the text but have not been made despite wide agreement that it is in error, either because it supports some church doctrine or to preserve the sanctity of a particular version. I point out these errors that I know about as they come up in my blog but I did not discover these errors on my own, Most have been documented many times through the centuries that we have had the Word in English. Some were no doubt known when the Word was only in other languages, but as my familiarity with those writings is much more limited, I will not say that for certain. Well I seem to be getting long winded again I think my comment is as long as your article. Hope my comment helps paulfg as well as your article. Selah.

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