Saturday, September 30, 2006

To Err Is Human...Inerrancy Is Divine

So, according to Bob, if you're a conservative Christian you are an undereducated, southern, white evangelical or black protestant. Oh...and you have no conscience, hate gay people, want women to be subjugated, and hope everyone who believes different gets smited...smoten...smitten...would someone conjugate the word "smite", please?

He constantly sets up straw-men to paint a picture of those of us who believe in things like the inerrancy of the Bible as Dark Age serfs, and they who believe the bible is "authoritative, but not inerrant" as the bringers of the Enlightenment.

My question is this: if you believe, as Bob writes, "morality can be objectively determined by reason independent of God’s revelation in Scripture", why do you even care about the Bible? The church fathers believed that Scripture trumped tradition, and tradition trumped reason. I think that tradition and reason are more equal, but Scripture has always been at the top of the food chain, even for Jesus.

But if the Bible is second on the food chain to us, why even use it? How can you trust it? It isn't Shakespeare or Homer...we aren't looking for entertainment, allegory, or insight into human life. We look to the Bible for Truth. And if you think that your source of Truth isn't perfect, how can you trust that it's truthful. I guess for Bob and others like him, the Bible is more about truthiness than Truth.

I posted this as a comment to a couple of his latest blogs at

So, tell me where I fall if I think God is like this:

Angry when His people sin (ex: 1Kings 8:46ff)
Involved in our lives (Matt. 21:22) For us to receive what we pray for, he has to be listening. Not to mention that since He is all loving, and loves all of His people equally, He must be involved in all of our lives. And if not, why do we pray? And that's not to say He's orchestrating every moment, but He's involved.
Longing to forgive us and receive us home (the Prodigal Son, as you mentioned)
Giving endless opportunities to come to Jesus, no matter what we've done (Saul's Conversion)
Ultimately righteous, God will judge everyone, according to their choice to follow Christ (Matt. 11:20-24; 12:36-37; John 5:24-27, etc.)

I'll assume that looking at my list you'll quickly drop me in the authoritarian bucket as a black protestent or white evangelical. I'm sure you'll be surprised to know I'm a black ELCA minister.

You mention in another post that one reason you don't believe in Biblical inerrancy is that the Bible contradicts itself. I think, however, the contradictions speak to the full nature of God.

Jesus was fully God and fully man. That's 100% of each, which is something we can't comprehend. So why is it surprising that the 200% son of God calls us to total acceptance of people and total rejection of sin at the same time? In the same way you can't be 200% anything, you can't have people without sin. But we're called to love people, and hate sin. So we try. We fail, but we press on.

We're also called to confront sin, and love our neighbor. But if we confront a person's sin, they're probably going to be offended and hurt when called on it. Some say that if we hurt them at all, we aren't loving them; but loving another person means leading them to the truth. We can't do that if we posit that loving them means accepting everything they do. The Bible is God's Truth passed through a seive, leaving behind what we are capable of understanding. We should take what He's given us and rely on it, knowing full well that it isn't the Tome of the Full Knowledge of God, but a love story, a biography, and a guidebook.


At 11:45 AM, Blogger John said...

God Rules


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