One of my favorite blogs is andrewsullivan.com
The following exchange has left me puzzled about God and the weight of the Bible in Christianity...I will let you read it, then I will make some comments at the end...
The Appeal Of Biblical Inerrancy
15 Jan 2008 07:40 pm
One fundamentalist makes the case:
If we deny inerrancy, we make God a liar. If there are errors in the original manuscripts, manuscripts that testify they were breathed out by God, one of two things must be true: either God purposely lied or he mistakenly lied. Either way this would indicate that God is capable of making or of producing errors. Needless to say, this would destroy our ability to trust any of God’s revelation and cause us to doubt God Himself.
To my mind, this is Biblical fetishism. And absurd on its face, since there are far too many direct factual internal contradictions in the Bible to uphold this standard. I agree with Michael Spencer:
I do not doubt God or his ability to express revelation exactly as he wants it to be. The thought that God cannot reveal truth unless it is in a book that is supernaturally prevented from having normal, imperfect, human expressions of its time really never occurs to me. I assume that within the expressions, thought world, worldviews and literary genres of the time, God got exactly what he wanted and I can preach it without having to be concerned about "errancy."
I struggle with the notion that everything in the Bible is final, not to be interpreted, God's thoughts, etc largely because men wrote it...
I constantly listen to preachers who say, "in one translation, the Bible says this..."
Well, there shouldnt be various translations...Not to mention the language differences...
Are we to look at the parables as the literal word of God?
On the other hand, if we start picking and choosing from the Bible what we want to follow or what we disagree with, then we arent really understanding the totality of Christianity. I dont think God gave us a book to read in which we get to pick the easy stuff to do, and disregard the not-so-easy things...
For example, if I disagree with all the tithing chapters in the Bible (and for all of you non-tithers and Catholics out there, there are MANY chapters), how do I explain why they are in the Bible in the first place? If God didnt want me giving 10% of my income to him and the Church, why is it in there in the first place?
So if we start practicing a "cafeteria Biblical understanding," who is to say Jesus was born of a virgin, that he came back from the dead?
Dont we in essence, became gods by rewriting the Bible the way we want?