Because I typically challenge the idea of biblical inerrancy, I obtain a lot of feedback from inerrantists. But typically that feedback reveals false assumptions inerrantists make about me—assumptions that are occasionally the quite opposite of what I think.
Right here are 5 typical false assumptions I repeatedly obtain.
Assumption 1: That I Do not Study the Bible
It is incredible to me how typically response is along the lines of ‘You ought to study the Bible.’ It is as although I do not study the Bible when, in reality, I started reading the Bible when I was eight or 9 years old and by no means stopped. I recall, as a youngster, reading the Book of Genesis in 1 day. I also did Bible memorization—including the whole Book of James. The Bible was significant to me and nonetheless is.
I suppose some inerrantists can’t comprehend why I would study the Bible when I do not think it is inerrant or they believe that, if I study the Bible, inerrancy would be clear and I would attain the very same conclusions they do.
Assumption two: That I Have No Valid Purpose for Reading the Bible
A different way of saying this is, ‘If the Bible is not inerrant how can you trust something in it?’ Several years ago I found histories and biographies. Most seemed effectively-informed, but none have been inerrant, and I study them anyway. A single issue I discovered was that the older a book was the a lot more I necessary to seek advice from scholars for clarification and correction. Even although it took a lot more perform to have an understanding of them much better, I didn’t throw out my books simply because they have been not inerrant.
Considerably of the Bible requires history and biography—and it is old! But it also consists of fiction, poetry, wisdom, myth, and metaphor. Whilst a flat, inerrantist reading of the Bible appears to supply easy answers, understanding the Bible in context and in all its assortment requires a lot a lot more perform. Scholars aid, but so does just dropping an inerrantist point of view and dealing with literary, historical, and textual contexts rather. It is a lot more perform but far a lot more rewarding.
And it is valid, whereas the assumption of inerrancy is not.
Assumption three: That I Do not (or Can not) Think in Jesus
Aspect of the pondering that drives this assumption is the typical complaint that if the Bible is not inerrant how can I be positive of any of it? So how can I truly think Jesus and stick to him if I do not know if what was written about him is correct (inerrant)?
Effectively, I can say that there ARE variations in facts of the gospels that truly can’t be harmonized. I believe some items in the gospels are not literal but are Midrash rather, which was a well-known practice amongst the Jews of the day. I believe some components of the gospels outcome from the inventive influence of the preaching of Jesus’ disciples rather than a literal narration of events.
On the other hand, the 4 gospels present a constant portrait of Jesus, his teaching, and his actions that are compelling to me—so compelling that Jesus is the foundation of all my faith and belief (rather than an inerrant Bible which as soon as was).
I think Jesus tells us of a loving Father/Mother who wishes to heal us of our brokenness, alienation, and discomfort. Jesus tells us that it is significant to enjoy other people rather than to stick to legalistic guidelines. And I think Jesus’ resurrection overcame the energy of evil and death and gives for our personal eventual resurrections.
How can a person inform me that I do not think in Jesus?
Assumption four: That I Think and Trust Only in Fantastic Operates
I believe this assumption springs from my emphasis on loving other people and treating them appropriate rather than following legalistic guidelines from an inerrant Bible. But I absolutely do not trust in excellent operates (what does that even imply?) I think our resurrections from death to eternal life is offered by Jesus—not excellent operates.
But, on the other hand, how can treating people today with empathy, compassion, and care be a negative issue?
Assumption five: That I Cherry-choose the Bible for Issues I Like
If you are a believer who does not accept biblical inerrancy probably some, or all, of these assumptions have been applied to you, as effectively. But I am fairly positive you have been accused of this 1: ‘You cherry-choose the Bible for passages that suit you.’ Or, ‘You cherry-choose the Bible for components that you like.’ This is in all probability THE MOST Typical assumption about believers who are not inerrantists and is typically delivered as a judgmental accusation.
This accusation, at most effective, concerns the sincerity of the believer and at worst it concerns the believer’s motives as it is occasionally accompanied by a proof-text from two Timothy four:
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine but soon after their personal lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, obtaining itching ears And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (KJV)
The implication, of course, is that sound doctrine derives only from an inerrant Bible. Do progressive believers cherry-choose what they like from the Bible? Certain, there may be some who do but it is not the common practice.
But if the Bible is clear and inerrant, shouldn’t all inerrantists agree on what the Bible says? As an alternative, there is a wide variety of belief amongst inerrantists. Is that simply because they choose and opt for or just have an understanding of the ‘inerrant’ passages differently?
How I Really feel about these False Assumptions and Accusations
On the other hand, I do not really feel badly when these assumptions are expressed. I know they are not correct, and I can have an understanding of an inerrantist’s want to clarify my rejection of inerrancy—which can be fairly puzzling to them. And I know that when these assumptions are created about me that I am in quite excellent organization. In addition, I do not take into account inerrantists to be my enemies. We will speak about that subsequent time.
Jesus without having Baggage exists to help and assistance these questioning beliefs they have been taught in fundamentalist, conventional evangelical, and other groups. If you know a person who may find Jesus without having Baggage helpful, really feel absolutely free to send them the introductory web page: About Jesus without having Baggage.
Articles in this series:
Belief in Biblical Inerrancy Need to be the Second Most Damaging, Misguided Christian Belief of All
Why Do Inerrantists Consider the Bible is Inerrant Anyway?
How the Bible Really Operates by Peter Enns: a Book Assessment
Did Jesus Confirm the Inerrancy and Historicity of the Old Testament?
five Typical 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