God and Bible

November 18, 2014 Arne 5 comments

A Pew Forum survey conducted in 2008 states that 28% of American adults have left the faith in which they were raised in favor of another religion…or no religion at all…and that 16.1% are unaffiliated. 20% of adults who were raised Protestant [ex: Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, etc.] are now unaffiliated or in a non-Protestant tradition. How come?

The truth is that church & religion are man-made institutions…they are susceptible to all the flaws of man. This is NOT an indictment of church or religion…it’s just a statement of truth. If you believe God exists AND that The Bible is God-breathed, then both God and Bible are NOT man-made and NOT flawed. I believe it. I put my faith in God and Bible.

The other truth is that church & religion, regardless of denomination, is the only man-made institution built to draw mankind to God. Many churches serve their inspired mission with a love and humility that mimics Christ in whose name they perform their works. All around the world, churches seek Him earnestly and battle evil with a single-minded devotion to His Word. Some don’t. Like it or not, it sets them up to be Christ-like. Some aren’t.

Apostles. Prophets. Evangelists. Pastors. Teachers. Overseers. Deacons. Elders. All human. All called by the New Testament to serve Him. All called to be beyond reproach. In their church life, in their public life, in their private life. Not impossible, just challenging. How come? The leaders [people] in these divinely created offices are constantly under assault by Satan with an unrelenting torrent of temptation. And when some CHOOSE to give in, their humanity [and their hypocrisy] is correctly seen as being unworthy of shepherds of the flock. God answers. Moses did not step foot on the land God promised as an inheritance to His Chosen People though he led them through the desert to the river’s edge for 40 years. David did not get to build the Temple.

It is inevitable that our leaders will at best disappoint us or at worst fail us. When its shepherds give in to the human temptations they rail against, the flock may [understandably] turn cynically against church & religion. Especially when there’s no evidence there was a consequence for the indiscretion and no repentance by the one who squashed our trust. When it happens, we react in very personal ways “throwing the baby out with the bath water”…we throw out God and Bible because we’re hacked off with church & religion.

This is why it’s important to see God and Bible as distinct from church & religion. With faith in God and Bible as our foundation, human foibles within the church are less distracting. Rather, we can stand firm on that foundation and step in meaningfully [in truth and in love] to support and guide the church in doing what’s right. If the church does not stand for righteousness, it should not stand at all. Thankfully God and Bible ALWAYS stand for righteousness. They are everlasting.

It’s also important that people who are disheartened by church & religion keep their faith journey alive. How do the faithful who hunger for The Word but not for church quench their thirst? God and Bible are not constrained by the limits of human imagination…Scriptural Truth is not restricted to church or religion…Truth can be found in the public square or in the privacy of a Bible reading plan.

One such truth is that Marriage & Family was created by, and is precious to, God. Marriage & Family was in the world long before The Church & The Chosen People.  Marriage & Family is so precious to God that He did not rest until He created it.  If we TRULY believe we are God’s Most Adored Creation [throughout the Creation story, only the Man & Woman were formed by God’s Own Hands], and that the Marriage Covenant & Family is on par with The Universe, why do we treat it with such disregard?

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