“Old MacDonald Had A Farm”; Approaching Scripture Differently…
Maybe the Bible wasn’t intended to be a Scriptural version of “Old MacDonald Had A Farm” ;
“with a verse right here and a verse right there, here a verse, pick a verse, everywhere a verse, verse…”
We can have a problem when we locate a verse we think to be perfect only to find another verse that contradicts it or doesn’t support it! It can happen when we’re looking for a verse…and not for Him. The bible doesn’t work that way, let me explain:
We only need to flip to Proverbs to see why. Toward the end of the book we find two verses sitting right next to each other:
1. Proverbs 26:4: “Do not answer fools according to their folly, or you will be a fool yourself”.
2. Proverbs 26:5: “Answer fools according to their folly, or they will be wise in their own eyes”.
In other words, (#1) Don’t mix it up with the argumentative, or you’ll come down to their level. On the other hand, (#2) Challenge the argumentative to prevent pride. Wait, what?
Think of Proverbs as a snapshot of how the Bible as a whole works. Which verse is it? Which one do I pick?
The Bible isn’t about the right verse, you’ll only find another verse saying something other than “your” verse.
A flat reading of Scripture tries desperately to make sense of all this, attempting to give equal weight to every verse but with us winding up with brain freeze. That’s not how we approach the Bible.
There is a way to read Scripture that is life-giving, thoughtful and inspiring,
The key question for us and one that is rarely raised is this: did Jesus have a way of approaching His Bible that was different from our way? Different from those around Him? I suggest that He did.
He would say, “You have heard it said (talking about Scripture)…BUT I say unto you”. In other words, there’s a lot to choose from in there, but what am I saying?
Here’s the point: the Bible, a book that tells us about God, has verses in it that have opposite meanings. Some are no longer active. Those that are valid are there waiting for us when we need them, when He is speaking them, full of context, loaded with grace…revealing more of who He is.