That Doesn’t Settle It

That Doesn’t Settle It July 3, 2014

The quote is from a post of mine, “People Wrote It, You Believe Them, That Settles…Nothing.

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  • George Beatty

    God inspired it.

    • Perhaps, but the evidence from the Bible itself suggests that any inspiration on the front end did not eliminate the fundamental human fallibility of the authors, nor of those who debated what to include, nor anyone else involved in the process. And so unless you say more, I can’t see how that detracts from the points I made.

      • George Beatty

        I am not trying to detract from what you say. I just believe that God merits a mention in the process.Or do I misunderstand what you are saying?

        • I may well be misunderstanding your point. I focused in the post from which the quote is taken on the aspects of the production of the Bible which we understand, and which are often neglected, ignored, or denied by Biblical inerrantists and the like. I could add a mention of God, but unless I have some evidence that God was involved in the production of these texts in some way that God is not involved in everything else that occurs, and unless I can show some clear effect of that involvement, then I am not sure what would be gained by my doing so.

          • dicentra

            I understand that the Bible is record of a certain group of people’s interaction with their God. Not everything God has done. Not everything Jesus did (as, we are told, books could not hold it all). The Bible – as I know it as a modern Episcopalian Christian – is a collection of books which record in various formats the experience, letters, stories of the Hebrew people and later the early Christian church: their interactions with their enemies, with one another, and their interactions with God and His interactions with them, as they understood it. I cannot believe that God put the pen in anyone’s hand and forced words out. That just doesn’t make sense. The reason stories or advice is in the Bible is because the people who wrote them found those things to be true or truths which were essential to the overall story of their society, faith, and interaction with their God. (Not necessarily fact – which is completely different from truth.) I’ve often suspected that what’s in the Bible is there because the various people who authored, translated, and retranslated the various books felt they were a vital resource for their faith, and then canonized into the wider faith of Christianity much later. Perhaps I can say it clearer this way: many things that are in the Bible are true, but not because they’re in the Bible. They got put into the Bible in the first place, because the authors found them to be truths — often deep truths, which can only be grasped upon a soul level and not as mere “fact”. As a Christian, my faith is not based upon the Bible, although the Bible is Holy and a great deal to me. My faith is based upon the Way of Christ – following him to the best of my ability, however feeble that may be. The New Testament came long after the Savior. We have an opportunity to know Him and follow in His way by discovering Him through the New Testament, but we can also experience and follow Him in our own lives — that’s my experience, anyway… whatever it’s worth. 🙂

          • George Beatty

            Did God intentionally reveal himself to create the record of scripture, Or is scripture random observation and imagination compiled as an accident of history?

          • I don’t see why you consider those the only two options, or mutually exclusive ones for that matter. But it is clear, for instance, that when Paul wrote his letters, he was a human being writing letters, and not someone who thought that his words would one day be included alongside the texts that he himself considered Scripture (about many of which the same thing could be said).

          • George Beatty

            I didn’t intend for those to be the only possibilities. But rather opposite ends of the spectrum.I am interested in your understanding of how God and man interact to produce the Bible. And I guess more specifically what the extent of God’s role is in the process and especially the limitations He encounters that prevent Him from revealing Himself to us through His word that He is unable to overcome.Does the Holy spirit have a role? If I were to guess I would expect it is part of the process that corrupted His creation in the fall of man. Does God retain sovereignty in the affairs of man at all? If so how is He limited? Or does He only keep the clock wound?

          • I suppose the questions I would reply with are whether we have reason to assert that God was involved in the production of the Bible in specific ways, and with specific effects, that God is not generally active. Many want to assert that, whereas a general assertion of God’s sovereignty does not prevent one from seeing God’s hand at work in the Qur’an and the Gita and The Blind Watchmaker as well as the Bible.