Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Do You Believe Every Word of This Book?

I'm watching/listening to the Republican "YouTube" debates on as I'm working late tonight, and the last few questions have gotten pretty religious. As you know, I'm kinda into that, so I want to address one of the questions asked.

Here's the video.

Pretty forthright, eh? I won't comment on the particular candidates' answers. Instead, I'd like to answer it myself.

Yes. I believe that every word of the Bible, faithfully translated from the original text, is what God intended for us to have as His divinely-inspired and revealed Truth. I believe it is perfect, without error, consistent, and applicable to this or any age. I believe it's the best and most specific way to understand who God really is, and to know what He expects of us.

Parts of it are history. Parts of it are poetry. Parts are symbolic and prophetic. Parts are hyperbolic. For example, Jesus doesn't want us to cut off our hands or pluck out our eyes; he wants us to treat sin as seriously as the Father does.

So to say "yes, I believe" doesn't mean that I literally follow every word, because I don't think that's what was intended. But I never doubt the truth of the Bible. As for the most fantastic parts--the six-day creation, the prophet-swallowing whale, the parted sea--I accept them as fact, because I have no reason other than my human incredulity to believe otherwise. If I believe in a God powerful enough to create the world, I'm not going to say, "Six days? Now you're putting me on. Be more realistic." The miraculous parts of the Bible are easy for me to believe, because I believe in a God who can do miracles.

So yes. That's what I believe. I'm not afraid of it, or ashamed of it.

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