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jns182
Sep 24th 2008, 04:47 PM
If we take the Bible to be the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, do we end up making it an idol, a substitute for God?

If you think the Bible is the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, how would it not become a substitue for God?

If the devil is the master of trickery, deceit, and temptation, would not the Bible be the perfect temptation to deceive us by our placeing the Bible as equal to God?

Did the reformation open up Pandora's box when making the Bible readable to all, thus allowing people to distort the truth and make a religion which suited his feelings and judgements?

Was the reformation more or less conductive to spreading the truth?

With every literate person able to interpret the Bible how can we expect the truth not to get mixed up by private judgements? (please do not just say the Holy Spirit, because there are so many interpretations out there of what the Bible is saying)

If the Holy Spirit fills us when we declare with our heart and mind that Jesus is Lord, then why are there so many interpretations of the Truth?

How can we discern who is right and who is wrong without imparting our personal judgements?

If the Bible speaks to us differently as we grow in Christ-like maturity, does our maturity level distort the Truth in any way?

Since the Bible was orginally written in Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic to a specific group of people within those cultures to show the Truth of God, how can we, the general population, be expected to properly discern the Truth without a massive array of technical skills?

Since the Bible is not a pure historical narrative, but contains books of Poetry, Wisdom, Prophecy, and Jesus uses parables as metaphors; how we discern the Truth without having detailed technical skills and knowledge of the culture, and the people whom it was written to?

Are we taking the "easy way out" by insisting that the Bible is totally literal?

Wouldn't that base our faith on what is seen instead of the unseen?

If so, how could that be faith?

If the we think the Bible contains the total Truth about God, wouldn't that contradict Jesus saying that he is "not of this world" by implying that something "not of this world" could be described in totality by a means "of this world"?

If the Bible is 100% literal then wouldn't that reduce the Bible to merely a book of facts, a purely intellectual matter?

How then, would the Bible lead to a greater spiritual maturity in Christ if it is reduced to a purely intellectual matter?

Why did Jesus say to those who demanded evidence that he from God were of little faith?

What does this say about the Bible if we reduce it to mere evidence from God?

If we are suppose to spread the "Good News" around the world then wouldn't seeing the Bible as speaking in the manner of boundless, timeless, eternal spiritual truths that are true in every culture on Easrth be more appropriate then seeing it as a purely intellectual manner of seeing it as facts?

Does viewing the Bible not as literal hstorical fact, bust as timeless, eternal spiritual truth do anything to weaken your faith in God?

Why?

Are they impossible to seperate?

Why?

If we are to belief based on evidence of historical fact, what is the value of Faith then?

HisLeast
Sep 24th 2008, 05:13 PM
1. If we take the Bible to be the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, do we end up making it an idol, a substitute for God?
If you think the Bible is the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, how would it not become a substitue for God?
If the devil is the master of trickery, deceit, and temptation, would not the Bible be the perfect temptation to deceive us by our placeing the Bible as equal to God?

Hey friend, hope you don't mind but I numbered your questions and gave corresponding numbers to their answers.

1) I think you've got a non-sequitur here (conclusion does not follow from the premise). If scripture is the word of God and Truth, how does it serve as a replacement? Its merely the message that a perfect God gave to us. If it wasn't the Word of God and inerrant, we'd have no claim to truth over all other faiths. First I'd like to say that....
a) Nobody is saying the Bible is equal to God. We're saying the Bible is his message to us.
b) Nobody is saying the Bible is 100% literal. Is Jesus literally a door? No, of course not. The Bible isn't 100% literal, but it IS 100% true.


2. Did the reformation open up Pandora's box when making the Bible readable to all, thus allowing people to distort the truth and make a religion which suited his feelings and judgements?
2) The reformation was about a lot more than translating the Bible into the common language. Its not like the scriptures weren't being distorted before the reformation: being twisted to support papal indulgence, torture of suspected heretics, papal politics, etc.


Was the reformation more or less conductive to spreading the truth?
3) More.


4. With every literate person able to interpret the Bible how can we expect the truth not to get mixed up by private judgements? (please do not just say the Holy Spirit, because there are so many interpretations out there of what the Bible is saying)
4) The truth was being mishandled by the papacy to begin with. On top of that, the non-literate were making their own judgements based off what they heard (not what they heard and could read). At least now everyone who can read has the opportunity to learn AND BE CORRECTED BY someone with more scholarly experience.


5. If the Holy Spirit fills us when we declare with our heart and mind that Jesus is Lord, then why are there so many interpretations of the Truth?
5) Not a bad question at all.


6. Are we taking the "easy way out" by insisting that the Bible is totally literal?
6) Again, I don't think anyone is saying its "totally literal".


7. If the we think the Bible contains the total Truth about God, wouldn't that contradict Jesus saying that he is "not of this world" by implying that something "not of this world" could be described in totality by a means "of this world"?
7) Who said that Jesus was described in totality?


8. If the Bible is 100% literal then wouldn't that reduce the Bible to merely a book of facts, a purely intellectual matter?
8) Again see answers to questions 1 and 6.


9. How then, would the Bible lead to a greater spiritual maturity in Christ if it is reduced to a purely intellectual matter?
9) I guess you'd have to first prove its being reduced to a "purely intellectual matter"


10. Why did Jesus say to those who demanded evidence that he from God were of little faith?
10) Well, if you're speaking of Thomas, the good Lord let himself be touched anyway. Not sure what your point is with this.


11. What does this say about the Bible if we reduce it to mere evidence from God?
11) Who said it was "mere evidence"?


12. If we are suppose to spread the "Good News" around the world then wouldn't seeing the Bible as speaking in the manner of boundless, timeless, eternal spiritual truths that are true in every culture on Easrth be more appropriate then seeing it as a purely intellectual manner of seeing it as facts?
12) First of all, what do you interpret "the good news" to be? Culturally universal moral lessons?
Second, scripture isn't pigeon-holed into one purpose. It provides moral law, encouragement, chastisement, teaching, prophecy, fulfilled prophecy, etc. Its not ONE of those things, its ALL of them, and I don't think anyone is saying otherwise. There's no reason it can't do those things AND contain objective fact to boot.


13. If we are to belief based on evidence of historical fact, what is the value of Faith then?
13) Things are either historically true or they aren't. You can take it on faith that I ate a banana an hour ago, or you can investigate it by asking my co-workers if I ate a banana. Neither is wrong, but your faith is only rewarded IF I actually ate that banana.

Literalist-Luke
Sep 24th 2008, 07:22 PM
If we take the Bible to be the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, do we end up making it an idol, a substitute for God?No, because it’s the Word of God, not God Himself.
If you think the Bible is the Word of God, the Truth, and 100% literal, how would it not become a substitue for God?That’s as ridiculous as suggesting that if I have a letter from you that I believe the letter is you and discount the possibility of your person actually existing in another form. Get real.
If the devil is the master of trickery, deceit, and temptation, would not the Bible be the perfect temptation to deceive us by our placeing the Bible as equal to God?That is the role of the Book of Mormon and the Qur’an, not the Bible.
Did the reformation open up Pandora's box when making the Bible readable to all, thus allowing people to distort the truth and make a religion which suited his feelings and judgements?Oh, I see where you’re going with this, you’re going to suggest that we are supposed to submit ourselves to the authority of the “church”. Sorry, Charlie, I absolutely will not ever never bow before a lost, wretched sinner like the Pope whose righteousness is only as filthy rags, just like mine. He is just as much low in the dirt as I am and has no unique standing before my Father in heaven. I will not commit the sin of idolatry and blasphemy by submitting myself to a sinner like him.
Was the reformation more or less conductive to spreading the truth? More.
With every literate person able to interpret the Bible how can we expect the truth not to get mixed up by private judgements? (please do not just say the Holy Spirit, because there are so many interpretations out there of what the Bible is saying) OK, so let’s just force everyone to accept the lies perpetrated by the Holy See. That way we can all be unified on our way to hell. Sounds like fun to me.
If the Holy Spirit fills us when we declare with our heart and mind that Jesus is Lord, then why are there so many interpretations of the Truth? Because people have pre-conceived notions. Don’t tell me the pope isn’t susceptible to this as well.
How can we discern who is right and who is wrong without imparting our personal judgements?It’s hard to do, but I’m sure not gonna subject my personal judgment to another sinner in Rome.
If the Bible speaks to us differently as we grow in Christ-like maturity, does our maturity level distort the Truth in any way? That’s a question that would have to be answered at an individual level.
Since the Bible was orginally written in Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic to a specific group of people within those cultures to show the Truth of God, how can we, the general population, be expected to properly discern the Truth without a massive array of technical skills?The same way I do. By reading a good English translation and doing research to understand what lies therein.
Since the Bible is not a pure historical narrative, but contains books of Poetry, Wisdom, Prophecy, and Jesus uses parables as metaphors; how we discern the Truth without having detailed technical skills and knowledge of the culture, and the people whom it was written to?By acquiring those “skills” and “knowledge”.
Are we taking the "easy way out" by insisting that the Bible is totally literal?On the contrary, the “easy way out” would be to let some fool in Rome do my thinking for me.
Wouldn't that base our faith on what is seen instead of the unseen?Nope.
If so, how could that be faith? The same as I have faith in the chair I’m sitting in to hold me up. My seeing the chair before I place my faith in it to support my weight does not negate my faith in its ability to do so.
If the we think the Bible contains the total Truth about God, wouldn't that contradict Jesus saying that he is "not of this world" by implying that something "not of this world" could be described in totality by a means "of this world"?Jesus is not of this world, and neither is His word, but His Word is in the world, just as Jesus was for about 30+ years.
If the Bible is 100% literal then wouldn't that reduce the Bible to merely a book of facts, a purely intellectual matter? It’s not 100% literal. You just demonstrated your own lack of understanding of the Bible.
How then, would the Bible lead to a greater spiritual maturity in Christ if it is reduced to a purely intellectual matter?It can’t be.
Why did Jesus say to those who demanded evidence that he from God were of little faith? Because the evidence was already in front of their faces and they were choosing to ignore it.
What does this say about the Bible if we reduce it to mere evidence from God?I have no idea what you’re talking about there.
If we are suppose to spread the "Good News" around the world then wouldn't seeing the Bible as speaking in the manner of boundless, timeless, eternal spiritual truths that are true in every culture on Easrth be more appropriate then seeing it as a purely intellectual manner of seeing it as facts?There’s no difference.
Does viewing the Bible not as literal hstorical fact, bust as timeless, eternal spiritual truth do anything to weaken your faith in God?

Why?

Are they impossible to seperate?

Why?

If we are to belief based on evidence of historical fact, what is the value of Faith then?My faith is based on the historical fact of the Bible, which tells me that the Bible’s statements regarding the UNSEEN future are also reliable. THAT is where my faith lies, in the future, UNSEEN return of my Lord, Jesus Christ.

jns182
Sep 24th 2008, 08:41 PM
I never said I believed all that. They were questions raised in a discussion group at my church, so I just wanted to see what answers I would get on here.

Sold Out
Sep 24th 2008, 09:39 PM
Does viewing the Bible not as literal hstorical fact, bust as timeless, eternal spiritual truth do anything to weaken your faith in God?


Not to answer a question with a question...but as a Christian, why would you even come up with these questions?

The bible does contain literal historical fact, which in fact proves even more that it is God's Word.

Never, EVER, has a single word contained within the scriptures ever caused me to question my faith.

"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." Rom 10:17

Literalist-Luke
Sep 25th 2008, 03:05 PM
I never said I believed all that. They were questions raised in a discussion group at my church, so I just wanted to see what answers I would get on here.OK, that's fine, you might want to clarify that sort of thing in the future. When you post questions like that without saying they're not yours, it will be the natural assumption that they're your questions/statements.

Where on earth do you go to "church" that a discussion group would even be talking about such things? If I was in a church where such things were even open to discussion, I'd be out the door so fast that everybody would wonder where the cloud of dust came from.

crawfish
Sep 25th 2008, 06:21 PM
Where on earth do you go to "church" that a discussion group would even be talking about such things? If I was in a church where such things were even open to discussion, I'd be out the door so fast that everybody would wonder where the cloud of dust came from.

Yes, goodness knows, let's avoid the tough questions.

If I belonged to a church that avoided such topics, I'd leave just as fast. These subjects come up in the world, and people are faced with them everyday. I'd prefer Christians to be prepared than to be insulated.

crawfish
Sep 25th 2008, 06:30 PM
And, for the record, the I believe the questions are completely valid. I think it is possible to concentrate so much on the legal aspect of Christianity that you place it above the human aspect; in studying the scripture you lose sight that its chief purpose isn't study but application. The former is just the means to the latter.

In that way, the bible can be used to supersede God; it becomes the thing rather than the message.

As far as how it is read; it is always important to understand that the bible is not simple. It is very, very complicated, with enough depth to keep even the keenest scholar busy for a lifetime. The message of God's grace is simple enough for a child; but there is also such great depth and breadth that it can fill us in ways that are not necessarily tied to our salvation, but aid in our faith and understanding.

Literalist-Luke
Sep 26th 2008, 05:12 AM
Yes, goodness knows, let's avoid the tough questions.

If I belonged to a church that avoided such topics, I'd leave just as fast. These subjects come up in the world, and people are faced with them everyday. I'd prefer Christians to be prepared than to be insulated.


And, for the record, the I believe the questions are completely valid. I think it is possible to concentrate so much on the legal aspect of Christianity that you place it above the human aspect; in studying the scripture you lose sight that its chief purpose isn't study but application. The former is just the means to the latter.

In that way, the bible can be used to supersede God; it becomes the thing rather than the message.

As far as how it is read; it is always important to understand that the bible is not simple. It is very, very complicated, with enough depth to keep even the keenest scholar busy for a lifetime. The message of God's grace is simple enough for a child; but there is also such great depth and breadth that it can fill us in ways that are not necessarily tied to our salvation, but aid in our faith and understanding.Let me get this straight: You're saying that questioning whether the Bible is TOO accessible is a valid question? http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w40/litluke/twitch.gif


Did the reformation open up Pandora's box when making the Bible readable to all, thus allowing people to distort the truth and make a religion which suited his feelings and judgements?

You call this a valid question????

crawfish
Sep 26th 2008, 03:51 PM
Let me get this straight: You're saying that questioning whether the Bible is TOO accessible is a valid question? http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w40/litluke/twitch.gif

You call this a valid question????

Your tone implies that for someone to ask a question means that they believe it.

I spoke with a Catholic not long ago. He pointed out something that I have to admit is true - there is more heresy in the Protestant movement than in Catholicism. The reason? In Catholicism, the hierarchy makes sure that if someone starts preaching a rogue doctrine they will be removed from the church and lose a significant portion (or all) of their audience. In Protestantism, there is no such control - a preacher can preach pretty much whatever they choose as long as they can find an audience to preach to.

From this, he asked me why he should accept a bible interpretation from one guy with a business degree taught by other individuals over a near 2,000-year history of thousands of bible scholars who have spurned family and trade to concentrate on their studies?

I happened to have had an answer, but only because I'd studied the question. I pointed out that while heresy in the Catholic church might be less frequent, when it occurred it was more damaging because it became creed and thus adopted on a massive scale. I pointed out that many of those scholars opposed the teaching of the church even without leaving it. I pointed out the corruption behind much of the church's history, and how I could not follow something that was so obviously flawed.

The OP asks valid questions that need to be answered. The world won't shy away from difficult questions because they make us uncomfortable; in fact, that will only make them come at us stronger.

Literalist-Luke
Sep 27th 2008, 06:22 AM
Your tone implies that for someone to ask a question means that they believe it.

I spoke with a Catholic not long ago. He pointed out something that I have to admit is true - there is more heresy in the Protestant movement than in Catholicism. The reason? In Catholicism, the hierarchy makes sure that if someone starts preaching a rogue doctrine they will be removed from the church and lose a significant portion (or all) of their audience. In Protestantism, there is no such control - a preacher can preach pretty much whatever they choose as long as they can find an audience to preach to.The problem with that whole approach is that the congregation should be the ones determining whether they are being taught truths or lies, not the bishop or cardinal. The congregation will be standing in front of the judgment throne just like anybody else and they will be held responsible by God for whatever choice they make regarding Him, so what gives a bishop/cardinal the right to dictate to them what they're going to be taught when the congregants are going to have to answer for their own actions?
From this, he asked me why he should accept a bible interpretation from one guy with a business degree taught by other individuals over a near 2,000-year history of thousands of bible scholars who have spurned family and trade to concentrate on their studies?

I happened to have had an answer, but only because I'd studied the question. I pointed out that while heresy in the Catholic church might be less frequent, when it occurred it was more damaging because it became creed and thus adopted on a massive scale.That is very true.
I pointed out that many of those scholars opposed the teaching of the church even without leaving it. I pointed out the corruption behind much of the church's history, and how I could not follow something that was so obviously flawed.

The OP asks valid questions that need to be answered. The world won't shy away from difficult questions because they make us uncomfortable; in fact, that will only make them come at us stronger.As long as the question is being asked objectively, yes. The way the questions were being presented, it was as if the OP was taking that stance. Fortunately, that has been clarified now.

crawfish
Sep 27th 2008, 07:40 PM
The problem with that whole approach is that the congregation should be the ones determining whether they are being taught truths or lies, not the bishop or cardinal. The congregation will be standing in front of the judgment throne just like anybody else and they will be held responsible by God for whatever choice they make regarding Him, so what gives a bishop/cardinal the right to dictate to them what they're going to be taught when the congregants are going to have to answer for their own actions?

Well, if I felt the Catholic way was right then I would be one. :)

In the end, that is what convinces me. The choice of Christ is a personal one; we must be responsible for it, and there is no authority on earth that sits or can come between our personal relationship with Him.

Literalist-Luke
Sep 28th 2008, 02:09 AM
Well, if I felt the Catholic way was right then I would be one. :)

In the end, that is what convinces me. The choice of Christ is a personal one; we must be responsible for it, and there is no authority on earth that sits or can come between our personal relationship with Him.Agreed. :yes: