1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Book recommendation

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Seeker of the Source, Nov 5, 2020.

  1. Seeker of the Source

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    13
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    Years ago in 2009 I had several revelations concerning the bible. I recently came across Kieth Giles' book Jesus Unbound: Liberating the Word of God from the Bible. https://www.amazon.com/Jesus-Unbound-Liberating-Word-Bible/dp/1938480325 It echoed much of what I was thinking in 2009, (not that I agree 100% with what Giles offers), about the misunderstandings and misuse of the bible.

    Is the bible the "Word of God" or is it something else? What do folks here say?

    Here's a brief excerpt from my own book, Generic Christian Musings:
    https://www.amazon.com/Generic-Christian-Musings-John-Patterson/dp/B084DGMCZF/

    "Is the Word of God the same thing as what most of us call the holy bible?” or asked another way, “When the written text of the scriptures refers to the Word of God, is it referring to itself?”

    The plain and surprising answer I am still discovering, that was nagging at the edge of my soul for a long time, is “No, it is not.”

    Yes, I hear the rumblings now out there of “heretic”, “liberal”, and even “false prophet”.

    This is a very tricky knife-edge to dance upon I realize, like hiking along the dangerous “Knife Edge” trail of Maine’s Mt. Katahdin that I avoided many years ago. To assert that the bible is not the “Word of God” seems blasphemous until one takes a closer look at what the bible actually has written in it when the “Word of God” is mentioned.

    Imagine, please try hard, that you have never heard a sermon, never read book about the bible and nobody has ever called the written scriptures, (the bible), as being the “Word of God”. If you can do this and then read the bible, (free from certain mental noise of your past), – you will rarely find in the text of the bible where it calls itself the “Word of God”. If such mention can be clearly demonstrated, it actually doesn’t refer to the entire bible -- but only to the Old Testament and never to the New Testament. I doubt that the authors of the letters in the New Testament considered their writings, at the time, sent to believers in the churches or the regions of the then known world, as the “Word of God”. They felt the serious need to write what they believed would help other believers in their spiritual walk. The Gospels and the book of Acts were written to reveal the truth of Jesus’ ministry, His being the Savior, and the work of the Holy Spirit in the early church. They were historical accounts of a critical time in history. Yet, I doubt the writers considered what they were writing as the actual “Word of God”. And the book of Revelation again was written to believers, (bondmen, bondservants), as it states in its opening verse:


    Revelation 1 (DARBY)


    1 Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to him, to shew to his bondmen what must shortly take place; and he signified [it], sending by his angel, to his bondman John,


    John writes about the seven churches in Asia, about visions of heaven, of things to come at the end of time, and of eternity to come. Still nowhere in this apocalyptic book does John state the book is to be seen as the “Word of God”. He actually proclaims later in chapter 19 that Jesus is named “The Word of God”.

    When you see this fact, it is a shock, yes -- yet also a revelation of something wildly precious that many believers need. This deeper truth as to the real identity of the “Word of God” once fully grasped is a mighty and unshakeable reality.

    Our minds are usually set on “auto-pilot” in that we rarely analyze what we are thinking about critically. When we read a written word or phrase, when we hear a word – our brains seek for a reference point to grasp meanings in order for us move forward in ascertaining a message or information being offered. What we fail to realize is that many times, when we read or hear text from the bible, we incorrectly attach definitions and meanings to the text that the writer never intended for the reader or hearer to think of as part of the message.

    It is complicatedly true that we inevitably and unconsciously bring our own very individualized, customized mental filter “lexicon” or subconscious codex: “my-worldview” to every instance of our encounter with scripture. Mostly, this is very helpful, as it obviates the need for us to relearn every word’s meaning as we are thinking and processing language. Sometimes it is NOT helpful because we were taught or told incorrectly what a word or phrase meant or was connected with in everyday usage.

    Equating the written text in the books of the bible as being the same as the “Word of God” is one tragically confusing case in point of our mental “auto-pilot” being NOT helpful.

    So what do people think about my "heresy"?
     
  2. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    8,963
    Likes Received:
    995
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Well the obvious weakness is that if what you propose is true, how do we differentiate between what God said and what the authors said?

    If we can pick and choose what we believe God said, the authority of Scripture is undermined.

    All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that fully capable, equipped for every good work.
    2 Timothy 3:16 NASB
    Rob
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  3. Seeker of the Source

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    13
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    I do not assert that one can pick and choose. Later in my article, I fully explain the proper approach to the bible via the Spirit's teaching and not via intellect or bible-worship mentality.

    Lastly, the verse you quote is the universal "go to" verse to affirm that the entire bible is the inerrant Word of God. However, when this epistle to Timothy was written, the only recognized scripture was the Old Testament. The verse does not refer to the New Testament epistles and books yet to be written. Paul was not looking ahead in time to say his writings and others of the first century were scripture. This is a fact that most teachers and preachers fail to grasp.

    I'm just saying . . .
     
  4. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    8,963
    Likes Received:
    995
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I’ve never hiked Knife edge, too old now.
    But I’ve been up Cathedral trail twice.

    upload_2020-11-5_19-49-59.jpeg

    Rob
     
  5. Seeker of the Source

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    13
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    Wow! Very cool. The Cathedral trail was hard enough. It took me and my daughter over 12 hours with lunch at the peak. The Knife Edge looked brutal and I heard that a sudden wind could send one plummeting off the edge to your peril.
     
  6. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    Messages:
    2,856
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist

    However, when this epistle to Timothy was written, the only recognized scripture was the Old Testament.

    Umm No! Not true. By that time, the Apostles were appealing to each others writings as authoritative in what became the NT
     
    #6 Marooncat79, Nov 5, 2020
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2020
  7. Marooncat79

    Marooncat79 Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    Messages:
    2,856
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist
    II Ptr 3:15-16 to start

    And IIRC, Paul somewhere appeals to Peters writings
     
  8. utilyan

    utilyan Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2016
    Messages:
    5,149
    Likes Received:
    293
    Close to being right.

    " If such mention can be clearly demonstrated, it actually doesn’t refer to the entire bible -- but only to the Old Testament and never to the New Testament."

    This part is seems a bit off. Maybe you get a pass if you mean old testament and new testament WRITINGS. The testaments themselves surpass writings. Jesus Christ is like a living new testament inclusive of the old.


    "He actually proclaims later in chapter 19 that Jesus is named “The Word of God”.
    That sounds mainstream. :D

    Sacred Scripture is the written testimony of the divine Word, the canonical memory that attests to the event of Revelation. However, the Word of God precedes the Bible and surpasses it. That is why the centre of our faith isn't just a book, but a salvation history and above all a person, Jesus Christ, the Word of God made flesh.-- Pope Francis.


    John 1

    1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
     
  9. Seeker of the Source

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    13
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian
    I agree 100% with Pope Francis. Great quote!
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
  10. Seeker of the Source

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    13
    Faith:
    Non Baptist Christian

    Appealing to your contemporary, 1st century brother in the faith's writings is not equal to declaring them the Word of God. None of the writers of the New Testament ever undisputedly referred to each other's writings as the Word of God.


    Here are a few examples trotted out by those trying to prove the disciples thought 1st century writings were the very Word of God:

    1) Peter also says Paul's writings are "hard to understand", also stating that the "ignorant and unstable" distort them as they do the other Scriptures. Still, Peter can be taken to be referring to Paul's writings as worthy of not being distorted, like is done to other Scriptures which is most likely a referral to the Old Testament and not to other 1st century writings. It is only inferred here that Peter is calling Paul's words the Word of God.


    2) Paul's speaking to the Thessalonians is merely stating that they believed Paul, Silas and Timothy's preaching to them as the oral utterance of the very Word of God, (the Gospel of salvation). Well great. However, Paul is not saying what I write to you is the Word of God.


    3) This "evidence" so-called is really reaching. When Paul writes to Timothy about proper ekklesia functions he states (in context): "17 Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”" Well folks, Paul is simply quoting the Old Testament here and also what Jesus Himself said, as recorded by Luke in chapter 10.



    5 “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ 6 If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. 7 Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house."



    Paul was quoting the Old Testament and Jesus but never said, "Oh by the way, I read Luke awhile back and now I declare it to be the Word of God. Luke is a historical document like Acts. Paul could very well likely heard from some other believer the words of Jesus about "The laborer deserves his wages."


    4) When Paul instructs believers to share his writings and to have them read in the churches, this is simply a very practical way for Paul to share his teachings without him having to actually be present to preach and teach in the flesh. Travel from place to place in those days was difficult, not to mention, when you are locked up in jail like Paul was for many times, he could still reach the ekklesia via readings aloud of his manuscripts. He never said, "Oh by the way my writings are the Word of God."


    In I Thessalonians 4, Paul writes something very insightful, "9 Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other." Wow! Paul downplays the need for his own writings and states God Himself via the Spirit teaches, preaches and instructs the ineffable things of the Kingdom. If Paul believed his writings were the very Word of God, why does he say, "we" do not need to write to you?


    I still don't believe the writers of what is now accepted as the New Testament could ever imagine how the believing ekklesia, of all the past centuries and now today, still follow letter by letter what was written many millennia ago. They would be shocked. They would wonder why haven't the writings of believers down through the ages not been as respected as what we wrote? Why do you "worship" our writings so? Doesn't God still speak the same way today? Why haven't you taken the time to look into the God-inspired writings down through all the ages? Why have you closed the bible up and canonized it? Who decided these 66 books were ALL God has to say? You have unknowingly made the bible a thing of worship, an idol and a fetish! Wake up to the eternal NOW of what God is saying to the ekklesia.
     
Loading...