The Bible is NOT the Word of God (Part 3)

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Sometimes I wonder if we really believe in the Holy Spirit. We certainly acknowledge the existence of the Holy Spirit in our creeds and confessions. We talk about the Holy Spirit in church and in theology classes. We even grant the Holy Spirit its own day – Pentecost Sunday. But still, sometimes I wonder if we believe in the Holy Spirit.

Sometimes I wonder if we believe in the Holy Spirit. Does God really communicate to humanity through his Spirit? Does he? If he does, how is that not also his Word? Why does the Bible carry more weight than God’s voice? Are we not really hearing his voice? Is it just our own? If so, does God really communicate to us? Do we really believe in the Holy Spirit then?

“There is so much more I want to tell you, but you can’t bear it now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future. He will bring me glory by telling you whatever he receives from me. All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, ‘The Spirit will tell you whatever he receives from me.”John 16:12-15

Perhaps the role of the Spirit is to guide us. Perhaps its role is to lay upon our hearts the burning truth of God’s Word. That would mean scripture only becomes the Word of God once it has been illuminated by the Spirit, but not the Word of God in and of itself. That would mean it was up to the individual Christian to discern God’s Word. But, how can that be? That is too subjective and we all know that subjective truth is not real. 🙄

Is it possible then, that God’s Word is absolute, pure and holy; but that our approach to God is always a subjective one – we are subjects; are we not? Are not the thousands upon thousands of Christian denominations proof that we have believed this all along? Perhaps we are ashamed that we exist in such a paradox. But is it not better to exist in the truth of a paradox than a truth we have invented.

Through our addiction to certainty we have made the Bible an idol; instead of an icon. We have stripped bare all of its meaning through propositionalization and refused scripture to speak on its own terms. All of this – an invention of man. But we act as though it is an invention of God. We place our own prejudices and biases upon a text and we tell the Holy Spirit to move on so we can do our work. Then we send out toxic “truths” to the world all in the name of “well God said it, not me”. My friend, you have replaced God’s Word with your own!

We have sold our lie to society for thirty pieces of silver all of which can still be heard echoing through the Church’s coffers, even today.

Sometimes I wonder if we really believe in the Holy Spirit. If we did wouldn’t the Church look different? I wonder, if we spent as much time in prayer and meditation as we did studying the Bible if our faith would look different? I mean the forefathers of our faith believed in the Holy Spirit and look what good it did them – they were all killed. Look at the early Church Fathers. They believed in the Holy Spirit and look what it got them – persecution. Encounters with the Spirit of God are life changing – Pentecost, Paul, Constantine, etc.

Brothers and sisters our story is a tragedy. A tragedy that began once we left the Holy Spirit for the drunken intoxication that comes with power and authority. A tragedy that begins with unionization and persecution. The irony – the Bible. A book of documents meant to bring unity to the Church instead brought dissent, war, persecution, and hate. A story still being told today! A sacred book of scriptures meant to bring about the Holy Word of God within those who believe in the true Word of God – Jesus Christ; instead became the Word of God itself.

“The Word of God”, there it sits. Isn’t she lovely as she sparkles upon the grand podium of history? She shines even brighter when encased in Gold. And there we sit alongside it, ensconced in our grand Cathedrals of knowledge. In a courageous, yet audacious act we ask “what is truth”, when thumbing through its pages; while all along our Lord stands before us ready to answer.

“The Lord told Moses, Quick! Go down the mountain! Your people whom you brought from the land of Egypt have corrupted themselves. How quickly they have turned away from the way I commanded them to live! They have melted down gold and made a calf, and they have bowed down and sacrificed to it. They are saying, ‘These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you out of the land of Egypt. Then the Lord said, I have seen how stubborn and rebellious these people are. Now leave me alone so my fierce anger can blaze against them, and I will destroy them. Then I will make you, Moses, into a great nation.”
Exodus 32:7-10

Sometimes I wonder if we really believe in the Holy Spirit. Perhaps until we realize our need for repentance we will never know.

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The Bible is NOT the Word of God (Part 3)