The ıdeal Bible...
Truth is undemocratic, non-negotiable – thank God!
The truth is finally out… The LGBTI community has declared that it needs a Bible that will say what they want to hear and, through an executive agency of Her Majesty’s UK Government, (see p. 20) they are calling for research funding to ‘reinterpret’ sacred scriptures so that they line up with gay and transgender ideology. We can all sympathise with the need for a Bible that never disagrees with us...
Some years ago, I was asked by a church to speak on the theme “Love your enemies” – it was just after the end of the Falklands War against Argentina.
As I tried carefully to help believers pick up this hot potato, it was obvious that one man in the room was ‘uncomfortable’, to say the least. At the end of the evening, this Christian brother had the honesty to say that he could not accept the teaching. It emerged that he was the sole survivor of five close friends, four of whom he had seen fall under heavy Argentine gunfire. I was 32, had never encountered serious hostility, never had to put my life on the line and had never seen ‘the enemy’ kill my friends.
What right did I have to tell this war veteran to love his enemies? The truth is, I had none – but his argument was not with me. The authority issue that night was not between me and my struggling brother, but between the Christian soldier and his Commanding Officer, Jesus Christ.
We talked about how a soldier operates under orders, not suggestions; that orders have higher authority than opinion or emotion. Jesus’ difficult commands so often bypass both our opinions and feelings and require us to choose between argument and obedience.
The Christian soldier agreed when the Bible taught “eye for eye, tooth for tooth”, (Lev. 24:19 – in context, a restriction upon retaliation, not a licence for it!) but disagreed when it required “love your enemies, do good to those who hate you”.He needed a blessing for his bitterness – but God’s Word blesses sinners, not their sin. Here’s why: having commanded “love your enemies” (Luke 6:27), Jesus explains that God’s children are unlike their Heavenly Father when they hate their enemies and like Him when they are kind to them! (Luke 6:27-36) Now let’s sharpen the pencil… “while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son”.(Rom 5:10) – emphasis added) Show me a Christian, any Christian, and I’ll show you someone who started out as God’s enemy!
Like gravity, sin is a non-negotiable reality in our world. Our sweet children are born needing no instruction to be naughty and selfish and requiring careful training to respect proper authority and love others. We are born in a state of argument with God. The first time a nation ever encountered God, they experienced Him as an Instructor. He taught them His wisdom, His way to really live, His way to not ruin themselves and others through selfishness, to not shorten their life expectancy through immorality, His way to protect their kids from the child abuse demanded by false gods and their twisted worshippers, His way to abundant fruitfulness, freedom and joy in His presence. Israel became a visual aid to the nations. When Israel agreed with God, all went well and rulers came from the ends of the earth to inquire about the source of the nation’s awesome prosperity. When Israel argued with God’s wisdom, they became as morally bankrupt as their blind neighbours and every other kind of bankruptcy soon followed...
God condemns sin, because He loves sinners. Sin ruins sinners. God saves sinners – at His own expense. The Bible says so – or should that wonderful truth also be ‘reinterpreted’? The Bible is not ‘modern’ – thank God. Neither was it modern 500 years ago when a Catholic monk discovered that the official Church had a massive argument with God’s Word. He saw that unscrupulous religion was keeping people ignorant of the extravagant goodness of God to guilty sinners and cried ‘Back to the Bible!’ Praise God for His Word which is never modern or fashionable – but always true and full of mercy.
Once we have printed ‘our’ Bible that disagrees with God, the next logical step is to jump off a tall building and disagree with gravity… Mind your step!