Take it seriously? Heck yes.

May 21, 2011
By Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques


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.


The author's comments:
This is just a little something about why my life is supposed to always reflect what God says in the Bible. If I try to compartmentalize my "Christian" life and my "other" life, then I'm being not only deceitful to the people around me, but I'm trying to double-cross God.

Needless to say, I think that's a bad idea...

(Not to say that I don't mess up, either. Trust me, I do.)

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This article has 32 comments.


ambnyc SILVER said...
on Sep. 30 2011 at 4:58 pm
ambnyc SILVER, Rego Park, New York
6 articles 0 photos 133 comments

Favorite Quote:
You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams. - Dr. Seuss

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 religious beliefs, but I will not respect outright bigotry - the persecution of h.omosexuals.


on Aug. 10 2011 at 8:18 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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 article at all. The Gospel isn't about arguing effectively, proving a point, or saying "I told you so;" it's a love story. I didn't write this article with an intention to disrespect or hurt anyone.

I also wanted to say that you don't have to believe in the miracles that Jesus did or anything, but unlike a lot of mythology, hundreds of people were willing to die for saying that they'd seen Jesus (in person) after he rose from the dead. People don't do that for myths or fairytales. As well, whether or not you want to believe the supernatural occurences in the Bible, the locations and historical names are verified by archaeology.


Sythan BRONZE said...
on Aug. 9 2011 at 4:25 pm
Sythan BRONZE, Livermore, California
1 article 0 photos 21 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Do not fear to blister if you live a life in flame"

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.

on Aug. 7 2011 at 3:52 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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 demigods and explains some practice, rite, or phenomenon of nature." Whether or not you believe it, there is archaelogical evidence for Biblical history.

Second, the Bible really does condemn homosexuality. In the New Testament, Paul speaks to gentile (non-Jew) churches about homosexuality. Romans chapter one is a good example.

Thirdly, I'd like to say that my aim is not to cause the "harm and anguish" you say I do. What I say is that I disagree with homosexuality, not that I want the gays rounded up and put in some prison camp. I have no ill-wishes against the gay community because they are living, breathing people, just like me. I do disagree with this one lifestyle choice they make, though, and I think I should be allowed to say it.

"Tolerance" is defined as "a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one's own. " If that's the case, I can be tolerant of other lifestyles but not consider them correct. Likewise, people can tolerate my views without having to agree.


Sythan BRONZE said...
on Aug. 7 2011 at 2:10 pm
Sythan BRONZE, Livermore, California
1 article 0 photos 21 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Do not fear to blister if you live a life in flame"

Saved_by_Grace, your opinions cause harm and anguish to people based on nothing more than stone age mythology. That's why.

Sythan BRONZE said...
on Aug. 7 2011 at 2:09 pm
Sythan BRONZE, Livermore, California
1 article 0 photos 21 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Do not fear to blister if you live a life in flame"

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.  

on Jul. 1 2011 at 8:31 pm
Thesilentraven PLATINUM, Mableton, Georgia
40 articles 2 photos 1634 comments

Favorite Quote:
"il piu nell' uno," (according to Emerson, an Italian expression for beauty)

"Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality" ~Emily Dickinson

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"
~Kahlil Gibran

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

 


on Jul. 1 2011 at 4:24 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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 about when a leper is considered safe to be around healthy people), hygiene, and things like how to punish those who made a point of sleeping with family members. There's even a section of how to deal with those who did child sacrifice. (There were other polytheistic religions around them that were well known for practicing child sacrifice).

These laws seem very odd, considering modern society. All I can say about them is that, given historical context, they made sense morally and medically.

I believe Jesus fulfilled all of the Old Testament laws, so I don't have to worry about whether or not I'm eating an unclean animal or not. I'd completely fail at keeping all of the 200+ commandments in the O.T. That's why Jesus came to fulfill the law: because humans fail at keeping it (and we always have) and he wanted to bridge the gap.

I apologize if I wrote unclearly about all of this... I tend to do that.


on Jul. 1 2011 at 10:42 am
Thesilentraven PLATINUM, Mableton, Georgia
40 articles 2 photos 1634 comments

Favorite Quote:
"il piu nell' uno," (according to Emerson, an Italian expression for beauty)

"Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality" ~Emily Dickinson

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"
~Kahlil Gibran

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?


Person said...
on 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 straight." Of course not, thats just silly. You simply cant choose whom youre attracted to. And if the Bible were so flawless, it wouldnt have the many contradictions it has like ZeeBYoung said.

on Jun. 30 2011 at 9:54 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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 contradictions, historical innacuracies, and all that stuff.)

So, we believe that since the Bible wasn't written by some random dudes and was actually written with the Holy Spirit guiding the authors, the Bible really is the word of God and that it is without error.


on Jun. 30 2011 at 9:45 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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.


on Jun. 30 2011 at 7:31 pm
Thesilentraven PLATINUM, Mableton, Georgia
40 articles 2 photos 1634 comments

Favorite Quote:
"il piu nell' uno," (according to Emerson, an Italian expression for beauty)

"Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality" ~Emily Dickinson

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"
~Kahlil Gibran

Excellent point.

on Jun. 30 2011 at 7:31 pm
Thesilentraven PLATINUM, Mableton, Georgia
40 articles 2 photos 1634 comments

Favorite Quote:
"il piu nell' uno," (according to Emerson, an Italian expression for beauty)

"Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality" ~Emily Dickinson

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"
~Kahlil Gibran

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.

on Jun. 30 2011 at 7:29 pm
Thesilentraven PLATINUM, Mableton, Georgia
40 articles 2 photos 1634 comments

Favorite Quote:
"il piu nell' uno," (according to Emerson, an Italian expression for beauty)

"Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality" ~Emily Dickinson

"The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain"
~Kahlil Gibran

First of all, homosexuality is certainly not a choice. What don't fundamentalists understand about that?

on Jun. 27 2011 at 2:37 pm
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

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.

on Jun. 26 2011 at 4:57 pm
teacat749 BRONZE, Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin
4 articles 0 photos 151 comments

Favorite Quote:
We do not quit playing because we grow old. We grow old because we quit playing.
-Oliver Wendell Holmes

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.

on Jun. 16 2011 at 3:57 pm
ZeeBYoung BRONZE, Coatesville, Pennsylvania
3 articles 0 photos 72 comments

Favorite Quote:
Don't judge a person until you've walked a mile in their shoes. That way, you're a mile away from them, and you have their shoes. :)

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...

on Jun. 10 2011 at 12:46 am
Saved_By_Grace SILVER, Shoreline, Washington
7 articles 0 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I love book signings: kids waiting in line for you to scribble on their new books; ha ha!"
~Brian Jacques

Please note that I said that I take the Bible seriouslly. What you quoted is a Psalm, which is poetry. Generally, you don't take poetry literally, though you may find a deep meaning behind it.

As to the verse you referenced, if you look at the context, it makes a bit more sense. In the chapter, the poet talks about how his people were taken from Zion (I think it means Jerusalem...?) and made to go to Babylon. Meanwhile, Zion was razed. The poet then was saying that Babylon would one day see someone do the same to it, and the poet said the verse you mentioned out of bitterness. It was kind of a "I hope someone makes YOU sorry" type of statement.

Please look at context. It makes more sense that way.


on Jun. 9 2011 at 4:21 pm
Contemplator SILVER, Lake Park, Minnesota
5 articles 0 photos 68 comments

Favorite Quote:
There is a rainbow in your mouth! Open it up and show the world.
This is just like ice cream without the cream.
I'm as stiff as a dried out twig in the middle of winter.
Who lit the forest fire; the match, or the man holding the match?

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.


Parkland Book