IS GOD LIMITED OR RESTRICTED BY THE LEATHER BOUND COVERS OF THE BIBLE OR MAN'S INTERPRETATION OF WHAT IS BETWEEN THE LEATHER BOUND COVERS?
For many believers, using the Bible as the go to, supreme authority, and final answer for...who God is...and how God works. Using the Bible as the final authority has led to many misconceptions about God and the Bible do to man's interpretation of the text.
Some people conclude it was the divine hand of God that led to the divisions, chapters and verse tp make it easy to find verses that can be shot from our mouths as spiritual bullets to proof text the sacred doctrines and interpretations of man?
Red Alert: The sectionalizing of the Bible was man's idea...not God's.
What if God didn’t intend for the Bible to be the unquestioned final authority for man as religion as designated it?
What if God isn’t a fan of the way verses are ripped out of context to proof text man's interpretation of the text?
What if God doesn’t approve of our blind, often idolatrous devotion to a book?
Is the pronouncement made by Bible literalness that "God will not go against what is recorded in the written word"...valid?
Well let's take a look at what Jesus...the express image of God who came to show us what His loving Father is like...had to say., “You have heard it said… but I say…” Now, sometimes He is talking about religious tradition or the teachings of other rabbis. But other times, He is talking about scripture itself...the Old Testament. Why?
Could it be that He is breaking the sacredness of scripture to reveal new truths and breathe fresh life into the people of God.
Wasn't that what the story of Peter's vision of the white sheet was about?
According to the book of Acts, the apostle Peter was at a house in the town of Joppa when he decided to go up to the roof and pray while lunch was being prepared. While he was praying, he fell into a trance and had a vision from God. He saw a sheet fall from heaven full of all sorts of creatures...“four-footed creatures and reptiles and birds of the air”...and he heard a voice saying, “Take and eat.” Peter said “no” because scripture explicitly forbade him from doing so. The voice told him again to take and eat and once more Peter refused. This happened three times and three times Peter said “no,” quoting scripture each time.
Whose voice was Peter hearing...NO, NO it couldn't be the voice of God telling Peter to go against scripture, "God doesn't tell anybody to go against scripture" so says the Bible literalness.
"You have heard it said...BUT...I say unto you" sayings of Jesus, somehow is not relevant to the traditionalist. Sure, Peter knew Jesus was the promised Messiah by the time he had his vision, but there was no sense in the Old Testament that the Law would pass away and be replaced by a Covenant of Grace. In other words, Peter says “no” because like every other Jew and believer of his day, he had no expectation that the Law would eventually pass away because the Messiah had finally arrived.
What is happening in Peter’s vision, the book of Acts, the gospels, and throughout the New Testament is a fundamental and radical shift from the old way of doing things (no more sacrifices for the covering of sin...no more need for a mediator between God and man...no more need for performance religion...and no more need to be in religious bondage.
Is it a seismic shift to something radically different and far better than what was? So why was God doing something so radical and so obviously contradictory to scripture? Because God decided to do a new thing in Jesus...that of His Church to live the plan of God to transform the the world and reconcile all of creation with its Creator. This radical transformation was a Spirit thing that couldn’t be bound between the leather bound covers of the Bible, and either Peter (and the rest the people of his day) could come along for the experience or stay shackled to the past. Many believers today are still shackled to the pre-cross-past and enslaved to the bondage of religion.
A lot of people still use the Bible the same way Peter and Saul did, for Saul was devoutly religious and believed that is killing of believers was what God wanted and used scripture as an idol to be blindly followed that in their understanding even God is confined, limited and answerable to the Bible.
If Peter lived among us today and had his vision the Bible thumpers would have a field day. They would start off ranting about wolves who have crept into the "church" trying to deceive the faithful, then they would string together a bunch of proof text from the Bible to “prove” they are right, follow that with a thorough trashing of the Grace promoting people's knowledge of the Bible, and finally wrap things up by denouncing them as a liberal heretics and condemning them to hell.
And then when all the self-righteous work was done, they would have successfully hindered the move of the Spirit through the Gospel of God's love and grace.
People today have seemingly forgotten that the Bible is meant to be a to point to Jesus and learn how to live and love as the Church in life living, but instead we’ve turned it into a prison of religion that shackles us to ideology, man-made doctrine, and legalism.
Instead of letting the Bible lead us to Truth, we use it as a weapon to attack our enemies and defend our man-made ideological idols.
Thank God Saul saw the light and became Paul the bearer of the Good News Gospel, otherwise He would not have been give the Grace Gospel by Jesus.
And if Peter had continued to use the Bible the way religionists do today...declaring the Bible as the authoritative unquestioned authority, if he had kept quoting Bible verses and refused to get out of the way for God to move, the power of the Spirit would have been stifled by bibliolatry and the Church would not have gotten off the ground. If Paul had used scripture the way we do today, he could have never taken the gospel to the ends of the earth and ministered to the Gentiles because they were outside of Israel’s covenant as described in scripture. And if Jesus had used scripture like we do today, His ministry would have never left Nazareth and lepers, outcasts and sinners, would still be left outside the kingdom of God with no hope of an entrance
Answering the call of God to partake in the Grace and Love of our loving Father doesn’t negate the inspiration or authority of scripture. It simply puts it in proper perspective and allows it to serve its proper function...as the written word that points to the Living Word...not an idol to be worshiped or a weapon to be strike against those who disagree with our way of believing.
So...do you approve of how religion uses the Bible today?
Do you think God approves of how religion uses the Bible today?
We will never experience God's grace and love if we’re to busy quoting Bible verses to prove man-made doctrine, and holding God captive in the pages of the leather covered book...because we will be blind, deaf and dumb to the work of the Spirit unfolding like a sheet from heaven right before our very eyes, we will find ourselves standing against the Truth of the Gospel of God's Amazing Grace and not realize we are doing so.