Opinions and the bible

Let’s start off by saying this:

Most of what you hear when someone talks about the bible is opinion. It may be an opinion from a very smart man. It may be an opinion from an educated man. It may be an opinion that is popular that a lot of educated men hold, and there may be reasons (convincing or otherwise) that back the opinion, but it remains true that most of the time when someone talks about the bible, it is their opinion.

So speaketh the great prophet St. Dude.

So speaketh the great prophet St. Dude.

This isn’t a bad thing, but it is highly useful to keep in mind that when someone says, “God says…” what they are really saying is “I think God says this based on the opinions of some of the commentaries I read, my background and culture, what I was taught in seminary or Sunday School…” Most people aren’t going to give you the myriad of other opinions that other people or denominations hold because they’ve been taught and inculcated to believe that they are wrong.

(One of the reasons that I have struggled with anger against my former fellow travelers is the feeling of being lied to as a child. Every week (every day at Christian schools) I was presented opinion as the Word of God, irrefutable facts that could not be questioned upon pain of possible hellfire. Imagine my surprise when I began to deep dive into my faith and found a host of other Christians who did have a differing opinion on the passage and were just as convinced of their own rightness.)

This should not dissuade you from seeking truth within the bible. But it will hopefully cause you to challenge and critically think about sermons, Christian media, or your crazy uncle’s posts on Facebook. None of us have it all figured out. All of us are seeing into a mirror darkly. Question everything, study for yourself, read differing opinions, and trust that in the first five minutes of heaven, all of us are going to be embarrassed about many of the things we were so certain of. .


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