Sunday, August 3, 2008
God flowing into the Word
I've been told I don't understand the reality of the Bible. It's been explained God acted infallibly through his human agents. At every stage along the Bible's evolution God was there flowing into the pages to make it perfect.
The last time I listened to this opinion an image came to mind: There was a patient in an operating room, undergoing brain surgery. The world's foremost surgeon was there, a doctor of vast knowledge and skill. But, instead of performing the operation, the expert stands over a child giving step by step concise and complete directions, while the child performed the actual task. What are the chances of the child getting it right? Can it be any different when God communicates with myopic self-centered children?
Claiming the Bible is direct and undiminished from God's bosom is to imply people can be infallible. Isn't such a thing called hubris? Like adolescents who know it all, blind to every complexity, question or doubt. Or put another way, claiming the Bible is perfect, complete and infallible is like claiming a photo album can convey the truth of someone's life to a stranger.
Interestingly, when defending Biblical inerrancy scholars and preachers will quote the Bible, then follow with long winded personal interpretations. But, you know, if God where actually shepherding the Bible, those words would leap directly into the hearts of the reader/listener; without those endless and mostly dubious re-interpretations.
God is big, huge, beyond anything anyone of us can imagine. Won't we recognize that when reading, absorbing, witnessing the Bible (or any Holy Book) we interpret it through our individual eyes while weaving our own spirit into our understanding and further telling? This isn't denying the truths within sacred texts: it is admitting that God's mysteries and plan are beyond our human ability to grasp.
Most importantly, continuing to demand that there is: My Way Only! is nothing less than suicide for humanity future. Does your inner heart actually believe that destruction is God's plan for God's own miraculous Creation? Even if it does, does that give you the right to act without regard for the future? Who are you to give up on God's Creation, when you could be mistaken? Doesn't God abhor suicide? How can we hope to leave our children a healthy future without absorbing some additional basic truths and lessons, then moving on to face the coming challenges.
PS. For two thousand years every generation has its Christians convinced that God's cosmic rapture would happen in their life time. Everyone was mistaken, can't we take the hint?
God's not going to make it easy on us by intervening, no, no. God's keeping us in this for keeps - we must find our own passage through the coming challenges.