Scripture - Its Use And Abuse

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by PeaceLikeaRiver, Jul 8, 2014.

  1. The use of scripture can be a divisive thing amongst Christians. Because of all the denominations of churches in Christianity, it is obvious that many people interpret the Bible in different ways. Some of the differences between denominations seem minor, and others seem like outright heresy to others.

    Why is this a problem? Well, because the texts of the Bible have been used to support slavery, racism (example –the KKK), and the killing of others. So many people pluck out a single verse of the Bible, or multiple verses, that appear to support their views and their actions without regard for context. Certainly, the Bible doesn't support this, so doesn’t it all boil down to interpretation? Sure, we can say that they are wrong based on consistency in the Scriptures, but what about the interpretations that can't be proven wrong?

    Also, what about when the Bible is silent? Firstly, I don't believe that all obtainable knowledge is found in the Bible. If we didn't look outside the Bible, we would be making statements like “insects have four legs” and “bats are birds”. God gave us intelligence and common sense for a reason, so we can use that instead when we cannot find lessons in the Bible about a particular subject. Also, there are convictions that God puts on some hearts that He doesn't put on others. This means that outside the Bible, we do have unique and individual commands from God.

    If the Bible says nothing about a subject, does that mean it is opposed? Certainly not! If that were the case then we wouldn't be driving cars, using computers, using phones or doing anything that's been created since the last book of the Bible was written. Yet people continually look for Biblical justification about things, find nothing, and ask odd questions like, “Where does it say in the Bible that we should be doing X?” We cannot and should not be assuming disapproval when the Bible is silent.

    All of this isn't to say that the Bible isn't the most important collection of books ever written or that God doesn't speak to us through it. I have had many experiences where something is revealed to me through the Bible almost immediately after praying, but we don't worship the Bible - we worship Christ Jesus. I would trust Him to guide me right even if we didn't have the Bible, because He is perfectly capable of it.
    Huntingteckel likes this.
  2. Yep, the Bible is not an easy read. One thing that several of the elders here have been pointing out for years is that
    "one needs to take the whole of scripture to determine the truth of a matter, not just one senetence taken out of context".
    This is the error that most make when they come up with odd interpretaions.
    Years ago, a friend of mine (a Puritan) would amuse himself by quoting scripture out of context to see what kind of response
    he'd get from others. An example being "We like sheep" (he would leave out the "have gone astray").
    KingJ, Huntingteckel and PeaceLikeaRiver says Amen and like this.
  3. That's actually hilarious, sounds like something I'd do!
    But scripture used in conversation gets anything from no response at all, usually from people who don't know it well enough to comment, to raging frothing-at-the-mouth opposition no matter how you use it. It shouldn't be the reason for so much ill feeling between Christians, it should be the thing that UNITES us, but there we are.
  4. I think of scripture in layers. Sometimes the face value of what you read is only part of the story and there's a lot of stuff bellow the surface and between the lines.

    Unfortunately, I found out this was also the view of Origen who was declared a heretic... :speechless:
    PeaceLikeaRiver likes this.
  5. I'm reading about Church history right now, and actually in the Early Church, prior to Constantine, it was actually Baptism and Communion that were the most important things to the Church, not the Bible.

    Also, interestingly, when the Bible was first put together, the standard at that time for important and sacred documents was to put them in scrolls, but when the Church Fathers put it together they put it into a new form like a book which was known in Latin as a "Codex". One theory for this is so that it would be easier to flip back to prophesies in the Old Testament and the fulfillment of them in the New Testament.

    I suspect the Bible became the center of Protestants because they wanted something like the Koran. But, the Koran is very different from the Bible. Christianity has always been a communitarian faith, not authoritarian.
    PeaceLikeaRiver likes this.
  6. Too many people bring their viewpoint into what the scripture says. They will twist it so their view is supported, instead of taking the scripture for what it says, find other scripture on the same issue to refine the meaning, pray about it and then read it all again until the message is understood. Those who research and study and can find scripture on a range of topics are the ones you should listen to and at least check their quotations for validity. Also, if you cannot find scripture to refute someone you disagree with, then maybe you should back off the debate. This temperament would do us all well to not be quick to disagree.
    Major and Euphemia say Amen and like this.
  7. The difficulty here is that a Biblical scholar isn't usually too easy to find. On the internet there are lots of people who CLAIM to be scholars but they are often charlatans.
  8. Is the Bible Holy Spirit inspired? Is it just a reference book, or THE guidebook for our life?

    2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

    2 Peter 3:15 Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. 17 Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position.
    Peter considered Paul's letters to be scripture. Hence the reason the New Testament was bound with the Old to make our Bible. The apostles and early church fathers used the New as scripture also.
    DavidG and Euphemia say Amen and like this.
  9. I'm on the fence on this one. I don't know if scripture should be used to justify scripture, then you can get into circular reasoning. Sort of like, "the Bible is the word of God because it says so in the Bible which is the word of God because it says so in the..."
  10. Learn the Bible and you will be able to discern whether they pull scripture out of context or not. I think that is a great recommendation for all of us.
    Euphemia likes this.
  11. Jesus used scripture. The Apostles did also. Either you follow Jesus or you don't. You are either just a fan of Jesus or you are a follower.
    Euphemia likes this.
  12. Christians are often accused of using “circular reasoning” when they do what they are supposed to be doing, which is using scripture to interpret and prove scripture. We are criticized by those who say that we cannot do that, but their argument is flawed. The bible is a library of 66 books, authored by about 40 men, from different centuries and from different continents. Each set of writings has been thoroughly scrutinized and tested and have not been found wanting, but have only proven to be completely reliable as a witness to God’s communication with man. The circular reasoning argument is not valid when it comes to God’s word…it is just a tactic of warfare against God and His people.
  13. Not exactly. The books of the Bible were voted on for inclusion. Your number of 66 books is proof of what I'm talking about, the original Bible contained more books but some were separated by Martin Luther and outright removed by some denominations after that and are now referred to as The Apocrypha. The books themselves are the things that say they are the word of God. So they are because they say they are. I'm not saying they're not, but that is a perfect example of circular reasoning.
  14. The 66 books are the inspired message of God. anything else, no matter how good it may be considered, is not inspired. All extra-biblical so-called "revelations" do not stand up to critical and thorough testing in the areas of manuscript, history, archeology, prophecy and statistical evidences.
  15. 73.
  16. Wikipedia is not a great source for truth. :confused:
    porcupine73, Major and DavidG says Amen and like this.
  17. Does any one else have a problem with the "66" books? How many are there with the apocryphal?

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