Give Yourself Some Grace


Put Your Bible Away!

img_3035Have you noticed how everyone is so angry these days? There is so much animosity and even hatred being spewed from people I generally would consider meek and humble. No sir, not when they get behind their keyboards or smart phones. They become bold (read verocious) as a lion!

Here’s some of what I have recently read:

  • You can’t be a Christian unless you love the foreigner (Mark 12:31), or
  • Muslims are pawns of Satan. (John 8:44)
  • National borders are God’s idea, (Acts 17:26) or
  • Immigrants are the same as “us.” (Leviticus 19:34)
  • Don’t call yourself a follower of Christ if you disagree with me. (Amos 3:3)
  • I’m an independent woman, so don’t “put me in my place” (Genesis 1:26f), or
  • Unless you are submissive, you aren’t following God. (1 Cor 6:20)

Any one of these statements will cause an online storm. Not the gentle summer thunderstorm we’re accustomed to here in the South, but the full fury of a Midwestern spring hailstorm.

Truthfully, since each of these statements is accompanied by a “supporting” Bible verse, I could feel compelled to agree with them all. However, there’s the issue of context. I’m not referring to the context of a couple of verses before and after the ones listed, I mean interpreting each of these individual verses in the context of the entire Bible. These statements should be measured against what the BIBLE says, not what the verse says.

Some “Christians” have forsaken the Bible. I think I know why. Their favorite verses can be countered by another person’s favorite verses. Why should I take my cues from the Bible at all if someone can argue against me from another verse? Well, of course they can. It’s because you’re both picking selective verses rather than the complete Story the Bible tells.

You cannot have a clear view of God or his plan from one verse. One verse can be interpreted in a variety of ways and even can misrepresent what the entireity of the Scriptures teach.

From Genesis to Revelation, God is revealed, but you’ll only see a glimpse of Him in one book. For instance, God IS love, but He isn’t JUST love. So, if you’re going to use only one verse to describe God, you’ll likely get it wrong. If that’s your plan, just put your Bible away. You can come up with something as good as one verse on your own.

Here’s my suggestion: instead of searching for a verse to prop up what you believe, plan to read through the entire Bible this year. Go indepth. Anyone can be shallow, be different! Challenge your beliefs, check them against what you find in the Bible story. (There’s only one, you know?) Base your belief on what is revealed throughout the connected inner stories.

But if you’re interested in posting ONE verse, be sure your interpretation of it is a representation of the whole book. The Story is a fascinating one. It is life-changing and freeing when you get it. Let’s use it to speak life and freedom to everyone who will listen.