Why do you think it's so difficult?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by donnA, Sep 22, 2005.

  1. donnA

    donnA
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    To understand the bible without all kinds of education and books? And why was it written that way? Doesn't that just limit who can read and understand what God is saying to them? And what is everyone else supose to do? Why have a bible or even read it everyday if we don't understand, and if only a select few with that eduction can understand it?
    And why do you think those with all that education and books think the rest of us are dumb?
     
  2. gb93433

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    If the OT and NT were written today it would be much easier to understand. But it was written back many years ago and in a different language and culture.

    2 Peter 3:14-16, "Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction."
     
  3. buckster75

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    what part are you having trouble understanding?
     
  4. Helen

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    donnA, I think they missed the point of your question. A child can understand the Bible enough. A triple or quadruple Ph.D. cannot FULLY understand the Bible.

    It does not take anything other than the basic ability to read to understand creation, the fall, the Flood, God's relationship with man, the need for a Savior, and who He is and what we must do about that. A child can understand the stories, the basic history, the beauty of the Psalms and the lessons in Proverbs.

    And the wisest of men living today cannot understand exactly what is meant when God states 12 times that He stretched out the heavens, named the stars, or exactly what the various prophecies mean which have not yet been fulfilled.

    But what I, personally, have found, is this: That the more I study the Bible and the cultures and the languages and the idioms and everything else connected with the Bible, the DEEPER my understanding becomes in certain areas. But my understanding never changes from the basic understanding I had as a child about what the Bible was telling me. The surface understanding was not wrong, but I do get fascinated by the depths that God has allowed me to go. They are not very deep, really, but I have had enormous fun discovering how right the Bible is about so much, and that makes me love God more and be more in awe of Him.

    I guess it sort of depends on how you use your education. If you use it to try to force the Bible into man's knowledge, you are only going to get and cause confusion. But if you go at it with the faith of a child that God really does know what He is talking about and what He caused to be written, then education can be a very useful tool in digging deeper.

    We just finished our Wednesday evening Bible study with some friends. We got involved in checking the full meaning of some of the words used in Genesis and how there may be a broader and deeper meaning in some of what was said than what we see at first. For instance, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth." That is absolutely true! But it is also fascinating to know that the word used for 'beginning' also means 'choice part, first fruits, the best'. So the implication is that in the beginning was the best.

    And that is exactly what we see now -- stuff goes downhill, rusts, gets dusty, disorganized, falls apart!

    But none of that changes "In the beginning..."

    It just adds a bit to it which is, for me, fun.

    So it's OK to just believe the Bible. It is telling us the truth in a very simple and straightforward way. And that is the same simple faith that we all need to follow Christ.

    So no, you don't need a ton of education and other people's commentaries. But sometimes they help you go deeper and if that is fun and rewarding for you, great. If it is confusing for you, then stop. You know how to read and that is enough. You know the Bible, you know the Lord, and you can answer for your faith. I have seen you do it for several years now.

    You ain't half bad, kid!
     
  5. buckster75

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    "untaught and unstable distort"
    I hope by placing this scripture here you do not contend that is a response to what Donna was saying about an educated person.
     
  6. buckster75

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    helen who is the they you are refering to?
     
  7. Rachel

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    I think Helen made alot of good points on this.
    The funny thing to me is, the more I learn...the more I realize I don't know.
     
  8. bapmom

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    I agree with Helen and Rachel.

    It doesn't take alot of education to understand the Bible. I think its easy to get that impression if we hang out in some of the forums on this board all the time. All the Greek tense parsing and the long dissertations on what the colors of the Tabernacle cloths might have symbolized. Sometimes I feel like Im sitting in a synagogue in Jesus' time listening to the scribes and Pharisees debate whether a "good" man could do a healing on a Sabbath day and still be considered "good." (Im not accusing anyone here.)

    Donna, don't get discouraged. Just read it with your own good common sense, as led by the Holy Spirit. The understanding is there, and God will lead you to it. Like some thread here says, usually the common sense, when it makes sense, is the right sense.
     
  9. bapmom

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    I think sometimes they need people like us to come along and just point out simple Bible truths. Helps them come down from their "lofty heights of intellectualism" and realize there's a real life going on down here.

    I know I sound cynical, sorry. =) Not trying to be. But I know how you feel, Donna. Just don't forget, it doesn't take alot of education to make you smart.
     
  10. Thankful

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    I don't think that we should criticize those who are educated and want to share their knowledge with others.

    I agree with Helen and Rachel. A Simple faith will lead us to understanding the Bible. The Holy Spirit will lead us and reveal truths to us. But God can use other people and books to stimulate our desire to learn more.

    Many times when I read opinions on this Board or a person's interpretation of the Bible if it is not clear to me or I disagree, I will go straight to the scriptures, read and study for myself. Then if it is still unclear, I discuss the scripture with my husband (this is Biblical).
    He has more knowledge of the Bible than I do.
     
  11. TexasSky

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    Donna,

    Years and years ago the President of Southwestern theological (at that time) told a class he was teaching, "The bible says, blessed are those that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled is a promise Christians SHOULD claim, but don't. The greek words lost their intensity in translation. They mean so hungry that you are starving, they mean so thirsty that you think if you don't get a few drops of water soon you'll die. If you want to understand THIS," and he held up God's word, "You have to have a PASSION for God, and you have to ask, plead, beg Him to show you what He wants his word to say to you. Then you have to read it, study it, memorize it. You have to LIVE it and apply it."

    He went on to say that the closer you are to God, the more clear God's word is to you.

    I've claimed that promise, and I've found it is true. I pray before I study His word, I pray WHILE I study His word, I pray after I study His word, and my prayer is, "God, please show me the truth. Not the theology, not the doctorine. Please show me your truth."

    My pastor starts every sermon with a prayer, and in that prayer, no matter what else he prays, he adds these words, "Heavenly Father, please guide me as I speak today and let me out of the way so that you can speak to your people."
     
  12. El_Guero

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    I think that we have added so much human dogma to God and His Word that reading His word has become work rather than pleasure.
     
  13. bapmom

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    Yes El Guero,

    I agree
     
  14. webdog

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    I like what Paul says in Colossians, that we are "to teach and admonish each other ." , Paul included. A person with PHD in theology, hebrew and greek can learn something from a 10 year old boy if they are both believers and if we keep an open heart to allow the Holy Spirit to be our true teacher.
     
  15. buckster75

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    I do notice that my plain, simple and short posts seem to seldom get a response. (I guess this is another)
     
  16. NomadsWife

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    I'm not an educated theologian so I'm sure someone will tell me I'm taking these out of context, but when I read these verses a couple years ago, I felt like God was telling me to ask Him what the Scriptures meant. When I applied them and asked God to teach me, He opened my eyes to a lot of things in Scripture that I would never have otherwise known unless I had been listening to a sermon.

    James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

    1 Corinthians 2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

    1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.



    So those of us who aren't educated can still learn from the Scriptures by having the faith of a child and by asking God to teach us what He wants us to learn from them. It is such a joy when I read a passage in the Scriptures and God opens my eyes to the truths in it. It is awesome what the Lord will teach us if we only let Him.

    NomadsWife
     
  17. HankD

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    Because perhaps we focus too heavily on the wrong sources and maybe with the wrong attitude.

    NKJV James 1
    4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
    5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
    6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.
    7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

    KJV Proverbs 2
    3 Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;
    4 If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;
    5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.
    6 For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.

    KJV Proverbs 1:23 Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.

    Besides asking for wisdom and keeping short tabs regarding our shortcomings with Him, He also expects us to diligently study and work at the understanding of His word.

    2 Timothy 2
    14 Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers.
    15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
    16 But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.

    His gifted saints given to the Church can only do so much, the disciplne of study is up to us.

    Again James 1 and Proverbs 2.

    Avoid the proud and arrogant Jesus our Lord and master washed the feet of the disciples as an act of a servant and expects His servants to behave accordingly.

    John 13:14
    14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet.
    15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
    16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.

    Look for these qualities in His gifted servants as well:

    2 Timothy 2
    24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,
    25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
    26 And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.

    However a firm and authoritative stand against error must be maintained by His servants.

    Jude
    3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
    4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

    Last...
    NKJV 1 Corinthians 13:2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

    HankD
     
  18. webdog

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    Happy now? ;)
     
  19. buckster75

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    did you see my point though? just look back at this thread even.
     
  20. Paul of Eugene

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    Maybe, B75, that means everybody agrees and there's nothing more to say! (There, you got at least one reply)
     

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