In his book, The Bible Tells Me So, Peter Enns invites Christians to read the Bible as a conversation or dialogue, rather than an infallible text or guide. When read this way, we are invited to enter into conversation with God about the Bible, rather than simply accept everything the Bible says without question. I like this approach, but I also have misgivings.
In Bible college and seminary, I always found it strange that one of the primary reasons given for divine inspiration and the inerrancy of Scripture was “because the Bible says so.” I always thought…. “Really? We know the Bible is divinely inspired because the Bible says so? We know it is inerrant because it claims to be?” This is not a compelling argument…
Making Sense of the Bible is the book I wish I had read 20 years ago. It would have saved me so much headache, heartache, and trouble as I have sought to make sense of how to understand what the Bible teaches about God, and how to reconcile the enemy-loving Jesus with the enemy-killing God in the Old Testament.
In light of my series this past week about the Bible, in which I said that the Bible is the most violent religious text in the world, someone sent this picture to me. It made me think… Hmmm, why do I want my children to read the Bible again?
If God ordained all things, how can we say that God did not ordain the writings of other religions? If God, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordained the precise wording of Bel and the Dragon, the action-packed sequel to the Book of Daniel, then how is this different from inspiration, where he is said to have ‘out-breathed’ or ‘spoken’ his Word to the prophets and apostles?
The Bible is uniquely human because the Bible accurately reveals to us what is in the heart of man. God knows what is in the heart of men (Jer 17:10; 1 Cor 2:11), and He reveals it to us through Scripture. It is my conviction that Scripture does not so much reveal God to us as it reveals us to us. Scripture is a mirror which God puts up to our own hearts to reveal what is in man (Jas 1:23).
One reason the Bible is unique is because the Bible is the most violent religious text in the world. It is more violent than the Qu’ran. Why then did God choose to send Jesus to specifically fulfill the most violent religious writings of all time? So that He could do what only God can do: So that He could redeem it.
One shocking reason the Bible is unique is that it reveals mimetic rivalry and the scapegoat mechanism. Only Scripture has this revelation from God. On the cross, when God truly reveals Himself as He is, and in the process also reveals His vision for mankind, there is no hint of violence to be seen. Instead, God is most fully revealed as God when He soaks up the sin and violence and evil of the world onto Himself, and allows people to think of Him as accused, outcast, accursed, despised, and rejected.