How do you view the Bible?
Is it trustworthy or suspect? Is it relevant or outdated? Is it antiquated or applicable?
How you view the Bible will shape how you view Jesus. And how you understand the Scriptures will impact how you understand God. To put it another way, your relationship with the Lord and the direction of your faith will be rooted in your opinion of the Bible.
If you view the Bible merely as a human construct, as men reporting their memories and interpretations of what they understood to be divine activities throughout history… if THAT is your understanding of the Bible, you will see God has unpredictable and distant, involved but misunderstood, loving but not ultimately knowable. You may even see Him as uncaring or inconsistent or contradictory. Sure, there are some principles we can draw from and some lessons we can learn, but ultimately, we (like they) are trying to figure out life as best we can who God is and how we can live life together.
That’s one position.
The other is to see the Bible as divine revelation. God has spoken to and through individuals, revealing Himself, His character, His activity, and His expectations. The Bible, although written by human beings pushing physical pens on paper, is ultimately the work of God, by His Spirit, inspiring human authors – sharpening their memories, safeguarding their minds, guiding their thoughts, and speaking through their words.
When we understand Scripture in this way, then God moves closer; He is intentional and involved. More than hiding behind the events of our lives, He is bringing clarity, stepping into the light so that He can be seen and known. Not content with being guessed at, God seeks to be understood. And with the invitation to know Him comes an invitation to be worship Him and love Him. This is the reason for which we have been created.
When all is said and done, there is really only one option that makes sense. If we are going to know God, we either (1) guess and get it right, or (2) He tells us who He is.
If we have been created by God, we are created for His pleasure – to know Him and to worship Him , to enjoy Him and to share Him. If that is our created purpose (and it is) then God is not going to leave us to languish in darkness, grasping for incomplete knowledge of who He is and what He expects.
No. God is loving and He wants us to walk in a rich knowledge of who He is and experience the deep joy of His presence. So, He has spoken – through His Word, through His Son, and by His Spirit.
For anyone who can accept it, the Bible is God’s revelation of Himself to mankind. True, some things are hard to understand, and I believe there are reasons for that. But, like Mark Twain once said, it’s the parts of the Bible that are most clear that cause me the most trouble. While we misunderstand, misuse, and misapply His Word, the fault is ours not His. He has spoken clearly, and if we will listen honestly, we can know Him deeply. If we will stop protecting our idols, stop preserving our agendas, and stop pleasing our impulses, we will be able to hear what He has spoken in His Word — this revelation of Himself and the invitation into His family.
If there is anything I can do to help you understand God through His Word, please reach out… leave a comment, question, prayer request, or send an email.