My Advent reading this morning started with this Eugene Peterson quote:
The simple act of buying a BIble
has subtle side effects we need to counter
It is easy to suppose that since
we bought it,
we own it,
and therefore we can use it
the way we wish.
I have been challenged to think more about this today, asking myself do I think of my Bible as, well ‘My Bible!’ If I claim I own it then I am at risk of just using it to support and uphold the stuff that I think is right. ‘
Bodenheim reminds me that:
many things have been justified through the BIble: slavery, a husband’s right to abuse his wife, parents rights to abuse their children, refusal of birth control, refusal of medical treatment for illnesses, the condemnation of homosexuality.
A question I am forced to ask myself is is, ‘do I use the Bible as a weapon or as good news?’ If the way I read and interpret the BIble makes life a misery for others or causes pain or victimises then I believe there is something seriously seriously wrong with that. I see the bible as essentially a love story between God the creator and the whole of creation. If my reading of the Bible is good news for others then something is right! Do I use the bible to oppress and impoverish or to liberate and free people?
If the Bible does not pont us toward God, but instead speaks for God, then the Bible has become our God.