By Scott Tibbs, June 10, 2011
Here is a scenario that has played out a few times: I make a statement, and a Leftist accuses me of not being a true Christian. I post a text from Scripture demonstrating that my statement is Biblical. The response?
- "The bible written by oppressive men (not God) is a large part of your dysfunction."
- "The bible is a piece of trash made by man, edited by man, put together by man."
I find this endlessly amusing, as well as enlightening to the character and intellectual honesty of the person making that statement.
When discussing the Christian faith and Christian doctrine, everything eventually comes back to the Bible. How is one saved? What are we permitted to eat? What is God's plan for sexuality? How are we to treat our neighbors? All of the answers are in the Bible. You simply cannot discuss what is and is not correct application of Christian doctrine without going back to the foundational document of the Christian faith.
That doesn't stop Leftists from trying. Step One: Take an un-Biblical position. Step Two: Be proven wrong from Scripture. Step Three: Throw the Bible in the trash and claim it is false or that it is "the work of man."
The last argument is my favorite. If the Bible is not to be the source of arguments about Christian doctrine, then what is to be the source? Where are you getting your theology? What writings can you point to that are the true foundation for Christian doctrine? Did you gain some sort of special revelation about God that no one else has?
The point, of course, is not to argue a specific doctrine, which is why I haven't discussed any specific doctrine. The point is that we cannot argue anything objectively unless we have a clear set of guidelines. No one would say that the rules of basketball are "the work of man" and to be disregarded when they are caught running with the ball or goaltending. The rules are what they are. The basis for proper interpretation of text is always the text itself.
Does this mean every single thing in the Bible is to be taken literally? No. In fact, Jesus rebuked His disciples for taking Him literally when He warned against the "leaven" of the Pharisees in Matthew 16:6-12. Does this mean that people cannot have reasonable disagreements about the meaning fo specific doctrines based on the text of Scripture? Again, the answer is no. Does this mean that my personal understanding of Scripture is automatically the correct interpretation? God forbid! I am a man, therefore I am prone to error and sin.
But all arguments about Christian faith must have their root in the Bible, because the Bible is the Word of God. You may not fabricate a "god" and a "jesus" that have absolutely nothing to do with the God and Jesus of the Bible, in order to massage your own ego, soothe your conscience or validate your preferences. That leads to the kind of spiritual anarchy and ultimately the same sort of vile wickedness we see in Judges 21:25.