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Take it seriously? Heck yes.

About a week ago, I had a discussion with a friend of mine. The discussion, about how I completely and fundamentally disagree with the homosexual choice, turned into an argument about whether or not the Bible was meant to be taken literally.

At the time of this discussion, I was a bit flabbergasted. Not take the Bible literally? Why on earth would I do that? I just didn't understand my friend's challenge.

I kept on thinking about that question all day long and did some research. I also thought about this: if my dad had told me to not walk out onto the middle of the freeway because I'd get hit by a car, it would be completely reasonable of me to say, "Yes, dad, I won't do that." What if, however, I chose to say, "Why dad, what a lovely story! I'll have to remember that story to tell to my intellectual friends," and promptly went to the freeway and got run over? This is a strange illustration, I know, but it makes a point: why, if we believe in God at ALL, would we disregard any word he says and only say, "what a nice story"?

The Bible, if you read it, is not one long morality tale, as my friend claims. When Jesus came to earth, he did not give people a long list of rules to follow to be moral. See, there's a big problem with religion. Strange as it may sound, Jesus hated religion. He wanted to have a real relationship with humanity, not a religious bartering system: "God, I'll do such-and-such for you if you give me this thing I desire. Amen." I hardly have to ask if there was love in that prayer.

This is the problem with religion that Jesus has. Anybody can do good things, but what does that have to do with their relationship with God? Religion makes living a good life become a checklist, allowing us to forget about how humanity needs help and love. If God created us, our priority in life should be getting to know him. Instead, though, we all make this one mistake: we try to do enough good, nice stuff that we think we're good enough that we don't need God to help us. Contrary to what lots of people say, the Bible doesn't say that every "good" person goes to heaven. In fact, the Bible even says that NO person is "good"! This blows morality out of the water. What does morality mean if we use it as a way to ignore a loving God who wants to get to know us?

According to the Bible, God wants a real relationship, not a moral life. This isn't to say that we should spend our time being as immoral as we possibly can, but God cares about knowing us more than about whether or not we filled out that moral checklist of things to do.

What does this have to do with taking the Bible literally versus it being a nice fairy tale? Everything. If the Bible is in any way true, which I fully believe, then God exists and wants to know us. If we are his children, why would we ignore any of the things he says to us? Would we ignore his warnings? Ignore his love?

The Bible is written to be more than a morality tale. If any one word in it is true, then so is the rest. I believe the Bible is without error, so I can't try to live my life in defiance of that truth.

Do I take the Bible seriously? Heck yes.



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This article has 32 comments. Post your own now!

ambnyc This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 30, 2011 at 4:58 pm

Firstly... h.omosexuality is not a choice. You are persecuting people for something they have no control over. Secondly, if you are taking the bible literally, are you going to stone your children to death for wrongdoing, as it says in Leviticus? Sell your daughter into slavery? I suppose you're going to say "it made sense in a historical context, but not now." But going along with your literal argument, I think you should adhere to every commandment of the Bible.

I respect your religi... (more »)

 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 7:29 pm
First of all, homosexuality is certainly not a choice. What don't fundamentalists understand about that?
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 7:31 pm
More to the point, though: if all men are sinners (except for Christ), and the Bible was written by men, then how can the Bible be flawless? I think the Bible carries the Word of God as experienced by mankind. It's way too complicated to all be taken literally.
 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 9:54 pm

Well, I don't have enough space here to explain my reasoning behind the "choice" issue, but I could write an article about that if you're interested.

But let me say this about the Bible: We believe that God, first off, is without error, so there would be no reason for him to let his book be filled with errors. Second, we believe that the Holy Spirit helped those who wrote the Bible. (If they hadn't had any help, the Bible would be a really, really weird book, full of moral contradictio... (more »)

 
Person replied...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 11:37 pm
You heard about "September's Children" right? If yes, let me ask you this. If it were a choice (which I dont believe it isnt) why would someone willingly put themselves in a position where they would most likely be harrassed, put down, and teased to the point where they would want to kill themselves? Why would someone CHOOSE to be mocked everyday? That doesnt make any sense. Besides, have you ever sat down and thought to yourself, "Okay, I have a choice to be gay or straight. Im gonna be st... (more »)
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jul. 1, 2011 at 10:42 am

I would very much appreciate an article explaining your opinion of homosexuality; it's an issue with which my beliefs are very firm.

Your case about the Bible is, I must admit, more reasonable than I expected. But I hold fast in my belief that the Bible (especially if taken literally) has its flaws. What would you say about all of the frighteningly specific laws of Leviticus?

 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Jul. 1, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Alright, let's see...

If you look at Leviticus or Deuteronomy (which I'm currently reading through), you notice some REALLY odd-sounding commands. Since we don't have neighboring nations constantly raiding our areas, the laws about sieges and captured slaves don't really apply anymore (at least, not in a literal sense).

Those laws, though, made a ton of sense back in those days. Some of the laws dealt with things like preventing diseases from spreading (there's a whole section a... (more »)

 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jul. 1, 2011 at 8:31 pm

That makes, I'll honestly say, a lot of sense. You write very clearly, and I strongly admire that.

 

 
ZeeBYoung said...
Jun. 16, 2011 at 3:57 pm
I have a hard time taking everything the Bible says, or Koran, any Holy Book for that matter, literally. Mainly because they tend to contradict themselves. Most of them say not to kill, but at the same time they say whoever does such and such should be put to death. If we all came from Adam and Eve, then that means Adam and Eves kids had kids with each other, and so on, and at the same time, they say incest is bad. Its kinda confusing...
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 7:31 pm
Excellent point.
 
Sythan said...
Jun. 8, 2011 at 4:01 pm
If you believe Homosexuality is a choice, you need to put down the Bible and start reading about Genetics and Science.
 
contemplatorThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Jun. 9, 2011 at 4:21 pm
If you think that people are enslaved to be what they don't want to be then  you should put down your text books and take a good look around you. Men who don't want to be men change themselves (wich I detest). The Bible is the inherent Word of God, and it states that Homosexuality is wrong.
 
TeaCat replied...
Jun. 26, 2011 at 4:57 pm
Please. Listen: Homosexuality is not wrong. Please stop thinking that whatever your God has supposedly said is true. OTHER PEOPLE HAVE OTHER OPINIONS. ACCCEPT IT.
 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Jun. 27, 2011 at 2:37 pm
I completely agree with contemplator. My beliefs and opinions are based off of the Bible, which is no reason to diss what I think. Ironically, I had only one sentence about the whole gay issue in my article, and that's what everyone here has decided to talk about. It wasn't the point of my writing at all. I was talking about the Bible... Oh never mind. It's just ironic.
 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Jun. 30, 2011 at 9:45 pm

Please look at your own statement for a moment. You JUST said that other people have different opinions that must be respected. Why not respect mine?

I am not asking you to share my views. Please respect that I disagree with you.

 
Sythan replied...
Aug. 7, 2011 at 2:09 pm
Contemplator, The Bible never says that Homosexuality is wrong. The passages that speak about it are directed towards the Children of Israel, the Israelies. The word "Abomination" is used to mean "Against Ritual", that again is directed towards the Israelies.  
 
Sythan replied...
Aug. 7, 2011 at 2:10 pm
Saved_by_Grace, your opinions cause harm and anguish to people based on nothing more than stone age mythology. That's why.
 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Aug. 7, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Sythan,

If you disagree with the Bible, then that's fine, but it's not "mythology." It records historical data that archaeology supports. It is a faith system, it's true, but it has historical data behind it, down to names, places, and proper timing and language. A myth is "a traditional or legendary story, usually concerning some being or hero or event, with or without a determinable basis of fact or a natural explanation, especially one that is concerned with deities or demigo... (more »)

 
Sythan replied...
Aug. 9, 2011 at 4:25 pm
Jesus walking on water, healing the lame, rising after 3 days, that is Mythology. You're very sprouting of these non-scientific and unprovable theories that homosexuality is wrong and is a choice in itself causes harm. We shouldn't be tolerant, or accepting, we should be loving and caring like human beings, something Christianity clearly lacks in practice.
 
Saved_By_Grace replied...
Aug. 10, 2011 at 8:18 pm

To clarify: the fact that I believe differently about something causes harm? I don't treat people differently because of their opinions, but I'm allowed to disagree with their life choices/lifestyles. Harm?

To be perfectly honest, all humans fail at being loving and caring. I include Christians in that statement. (It's not our goal to act that way, by the way). It really bothers me that this turned into an argument about homosexuality, though, because that wasn't the point of my articl... (more »)

 
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