I do not think in biblical inerrancy. I believe inerrancy is a quite damaging belief, and I frequently demonstrate the errors of the assumption, or presupposition, of inerrancy. Of course, I get a lot of push-back from inerrantists and (even though I attempt to be civil) I do not back down from calling it a misguided viewpoint.
Some of these who disagree with me are not so civil but, what ever they say, they are NOT my enemy. They are, in truth, my brothers and sisters in Jesus, and I know Jesus loves them just as considerably as he loves me. And I have to admit that I adore them, too—from my heart—fully and without the need of reservation no matter how badly they attempt to beat me up. Jesus tells us to adore our enemies, but in this case they are NOT my enemies—they are my brothers and sisters.
I Am Committed to Jesus’ Final Command to Us
John chapter 13 tells us of the final time Jesus assembled with his twelve disciples. It was just prior to the Passover festival and they have been gathered in the upper space of a property. It was then that Jesus shocked his disciples by washing their feet. Later, Jesus predicted his betrayal and also Peter’s denials.
It is inside this context that Jesus says,
My kids, I will be with you only a tiny longer. You will appear for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I inform you now: Exactly where I am going, you can’t come. A new command I give you: Enjoy 1 a further. As I have loved you, so you have to adore 1 a further. By this everybody will know that you are my disciples, if you adore 1 a further.
Simon Peter asked him, “Lord, exactly where are you going?”
A lot of of us appear to be considerably like Peter—thinking about other items alternatively of absorbing the magnitude of Jesus’ command. Possibly this is why so several Christians appear to NOT adore other Christians with whom they disagree.
But we comply with the very same Jesus, how can we not adore every single other?
Questioning Beliefs vs. Questioning Character and Motivation
I firmly disagree with inerrantists on the concern of inerrancy. But I do not query their motivations—not even the motivations of their leaders and teachers. I believe they actually think what they say about the Bible becoming inerrant I know I did for years when I was an inerrantist. Now there are generally a couple of in every single group who have questionable motives, but it is not my job to judge that. I think the vast majority of inerrantists are genuine in their belief. But, in my opinion, the trouble is that their belief is misguided and is quite, quite damaging.
On the other hand, several inerrantists frequently attack my character and motivations. I come to be topic to accusations, name-calling, denigration, and private attack. I come to be a deceiver and tool of Satan to draw folks from the truth and place them on the road to hell—a wolf in sheep’s clothes. Not every single inerrantist does this, but several do. And I do not take private offense to it, but I do tire of hearing it more than and more than.
Even so, we nonetheless comply with the very same Jesus who loves us each we are brothers and sisters in Jesus, and I adore them and want them effectively. They may well believe I am their enemy, but I do not believe they are my enemy. In truth, I am not even interested in attempting to transform their thoughts on inerrancy. Who am I to inform somebody else what to think?
Then Why Not Just Let it Go? (The Terrible Fruit of Inerrancy)
The genuine query may well be asked, ‘If we are not enemies, and we each comply with Jesus, and I am not interested in altering their thoughts, then why not just let the concern of inerrancy go?’ The answer is that, alternatively of attempting to transform people’s minds on inerrancy and other damaging beliefs, I attempt to be a resource and help to these who currently query what they have been taught. It is quite challenging and frightening for a particular person to query the authority of their tradition by themselves.
But there is a second cause, as effectively. Inerrancy is a doctrine that leads to all sorts of poor fruit.
Inerrancy leads to restriction of the Bible.
A flat reading of the Bible does not make the richness to the reader they otherwise would knowledge from a a lot more complicated and effectively-rounded strategy. The biblical writers wrote from unique eras, cultures, and understandings about God to a variety of circumstances that have been vital to them at that time. They also wrote in a wide variety of genres that have been not literal or historical. It is a excellent loss to ignore these items.
Inerrancy leads to proof-texting alternatively of contextual reading.
A peculiar outcome of inerrancy is proof-texting. Proof-texting pulls a verse or phrase from the Bible to ‘prove’ some doctrinal point—often with tiny regard to context—as even though that quick passage, becoming ‘God’s inerrant word’, is all that is required to prove the point. Typically these snippets are gathered with each other from several unique areas that are not even contextually connected to make an even stronger proof.
This is not how the Bible functions.
Inerrancy leads to worry and unnecessary burdens.
Possibly even worse, assumption of inerrancy and the use of proof-texting give rise to worry and burdens in a host of other quite damaging beliefs, such as angry god, punishment in eternal hell, legalism, abuse of females, and condemnation of LGBTs.
So, in addition to becoming a help to these who are currently questioning their beliefs, exposing the false assumptions of inerrancy may well bring about other people to commence to query and commence a new journey. And that is a superior factor!
In the Meantime
In the meantime, keep in mind that inerrantists and progressive believers should really not be enemies—they are brothers and sisters in Jesus. And we should really adore every single other just as Jesus loves us.
Jesus without the need of Baggage exists to help and help these questioning beliefs they have been taught in fundamentalist, standard evangelical, and other groups. If you know somebody who may well find Jesus without the need of Baggage helpful, really feel no cost to send them the introductory web page: About Jesus without the need of Baggage.
Articles in this series:
Belief in Biblical Inerrancy Will have to be the Second Most Damaging, Misguided Christian Belief of All
Why Do Inerrantists Consider the Bible is Inerrant Anyway?
How the Bible Truly Performs by Peter Enns: a Book Assessment
Did Jesus Confirm the Inerrancy and Historicity of the Old Testament?
five Popular False Assumptions Inerrantists Make about Me as a Progressive Believer
Inerrantists are My Brothers and Sisters in Jesus—Not My Enemies
Books and Sources on Inerrancy