Battle About the Bible – by Greg Albrecht
What role does the Bible play in our faith? Is it accurate, for instance, to say that the Bible is infallible? Is it accurate to say that the Bible is holy? You might say, well, of course the Bible is holy—that’s what it says right there on the front cover of my Bible. It says “Holy Bible.”
As we consider the battle about the Bible, we’re going to study John 5:39-40. Fasten your seat belts. You may feel that some of your cherished notions about the Bible might be questioned as we examine a few sacred cows in the light of John 5:39-40.
The context of this chapter has to do with the healing of a man who had been waiting and hoping to be healed for 38 years. When Jesus healed this man, the Jewish leaders of that day were extremely upset.
So because Jesus had done these things on the Sabbath, that is, he healed this man who had been waiting to be healed for 38 years, because he healed him on the Sabbath, the Jews persecuted him. Jesus said to them, my Father is always at his work to this very day and I, too, am working. For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill Jesus. Not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.
The Jewish religious leaders of that day had huge problems with Jesus. But, let’s not put all the blame on them, for that’s just a snapshot in the album of history. Let’s turn the pages of the album of history. One of the problems that religion has always had with Jesus, whatever kind of religion it may have been or is today, is that Jesus often doesn’t conform with their Bible, or at least their interpretation of the Bible.
That’s happening today. There are many religious people who have a specific detailed interpretation of the Bible which includes their belief about what the Bible itself is and is not. Anyone who appears to differ with them, well, let’s just say those people are not welcome in those churches.
So what is the Bible, exactly? Is it holy? What does holy mean? We need to define that word, don’t we? Infallible. What does that mean? Inerrant is another word people use which actually ratchets up the discussion beyond the word “infallible” because “inerrant” means without any error of any kind anywhere.