The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
The Forum - On Line Opinion's article discussion area



Syndicate
RSS/XML


RSS 2.0

Main Articles General

Sign In      Register

The Forum > Article Comments > Should Christians read the Bible? > Comments

Should Christians read the Bible? : Comments

By Peter Sellick, published 11/8/2017

We are dominated by ideas of the sufficiency of the common man and of egalitarianism. It is enough, we think, for the common man to sit alone and read the Bible.

  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. All
Does reading the Bible enable or empower anyone to live with Real Intelligence?
Obviously not!
These three references thoroughly de-construct all of the usual blather or the countless billions of words written and spoken about both "Jesus"
(who was never ever in any sense a Christian)and the Bible.
http://www.dabase.org/up-1-1.htm
http://www.dabase.org/up-5-1.htm
http://www.dabase.org/up-6.htm especially section 17 on the big-time talkers of big-time false religion- that is ALL of the popes, priests and theologians
Posted by Daffy Duck, Friday, 11 August 2017 1:11:49 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
This essay by Peter is loosely related to yesterdays essay re the silliness in Queensland re the so called faith of christian primary school children and their efforts to evangelize their non-christian classmates by telling them about "jesus".

What would a primary school child really know about "jesus",and Reality altogether, apart from the consoling nonsense (and even lies) that their parents have taught them.
Primary school children do not have any kind of sophisticated understanding about anything.

For a primary school child "jesus" is essentially just another cartoon or comic-book character much like the tooth fairy, the easter rabbit and santa claus. Of course when one grows up the tooth fairy, the easter rabbit and santa claus are no longer believable. Such should really be the case with "jesus" too.

In more modern terms "jesus" is not any more real than the numerous cartoon characters featured in todays feature length films and cartoon series produced as propaganda vehicles to indoctrinate children to be "faithful" conformist consumers - that is to buy at Macdonalds all the merchandise associated with the latest film while consuming the junk food sold there.
Junk "fake" food for the body and junk "fake" food for the soul - its all a continuum.
Posted by Daffy Duck, Friday, 11 August 2017 2:20:42 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
the irrational idiotic unscientific fantasies such as the big bang and evolutionary tales are taught to kids. Though no one can justify such nonsense you question as to whether people should read the bible. They are certainly not going to learn about much by reading the nonsense Peter writes.
Posted by runner, Friday, 11 August 2017 2:25:26 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
**…How else could so many American Christians vote for Trump, the epitome of narcissistic individualism…**

I'm a bit shocked that Peter Sellick actually believes what he has written here.
Maybe the next article will explain why all true Christians are Democrats. I await with baited breath.

But actually, there are many many reasons why Christians are not only unhappy with politics, but are equally unhappy with the appalling moral state of the established church. Many of whom turn now to the bible for guiding reference alone.
After all, God gave us all the same brain to figure it out for ourselves! (With a little help from the Holy Spirit).

And interestingly, Evangelicals do not support gay marriage and homosexuality. Maybe that's the timing intended for this anti-evangelical rant!
Posted by diver dan, Friday, 11 August 2017 9:08:15 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Daffy Duck

(Reading of your links).
The author here then demonstrates definite exoteric traits of established Christendom, by criticising his esoteric evangelical brothers, as not of high enough ranked in the spiritual order to interpret scriptures.
I agree with that analysis.
What does that make him then: A greater mortal in Gods eyes?
Unforgiving, lacking charity or maybe lecturing?
Posted by diver dan, Friday, 11 August 2017 10:14:47 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Daffy,

You wrote:

<<For a primary school child "jesus" is essentially just another cartoon or comic-book character much like the tooth fairy, the easter rabbit and santa claus. Of course when one grows up the tooth fairy, the easter rabbit and santa claus are no longer believable. Such should really be the case with "jesus" too>>.

Do you know this from personal experience in churches or is this from the top of your head and without evidence?

I was in church a few months ago when the children were being told a story. The children were sitting down the front when the story teller said, "God can do anything". A 10-year-old responded with, "except sin". He had an excellent view of God and said it publicly.

I have a friend who teaches Grade 1 religious instruction in a Qld state school. One child raised his hand and asked, "Where does God come from?" He may have gotten this idea from a skeptical parent or someone else, but he verbalised it as a 6-year-old.

Your argument here is based on an Anonymous Authority Fallacy.
Posted by OzSpen, Saturday, 12 August 2017 9:20:43 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Mr Sellick,

Throughout your article you referred to "the Church" but I didn't see where you defined what "the Church" was?

Do you refer to the Roman Catholic Church, Orthodox Church, Protestant Churches, Westboro Baptist Church, Pentecostal Churches, Jehovah's Witnesses, etc?

I'd like clarification on the authority to which you refer as "the Church".
Posted by OzSpen, Saturday, 12 August 2017 9:36:55 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
To my mind 'the Church" is any organisation, whether established along franchise lines or not, promoting spiritual beliefs with a financial return being expected and realised.

A place in heaven for a fee...with money back guarantee

sign up folks and reserve your place.......we have it on good authority that your pets are also eligible to join you....for just a fraction more.
Posted by ilmessaggio, Saturday, 12 August 2017 7:12:19 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Ask yourself, then act accordingly: "How likely it is that reading the bible would help and inspire me to become Christ-like?"

- or any other book for that matter.

You can find gems in the bible, but much of it is contaminated by politics. Which would draw your attention? Which would you pick up? Look into your heart, then decide.
Posted by Yuyutsu, Saturday, 12 August 2017 9:58:42 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
"I have a friend who teaches Grade 1 religious instruction in a Qld state school."

Well that is very scary! What the hell is going on in Qld whereby religion is permitted to be taught in a state funded school? I am glad I live in WA.

As for those good Christians, well like all sky pilot believers they should be permitted to read the bible and any other fictional book they can find. Me I like to read facts, makes life so much more enjoyable.

Geoff
Posted by Geoff of Perth, Saturday, 12 August 2017 11:44:16 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
I'm on Diver Dan's side here - Peter Sellick do you really believe this prose?
Posted by SAINTS, Sunday, 13 August 2017 9:34:32 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
"How else could so many American Christians vote for Trump, the epitome of narcissistic individualism." People voted for Trump in rejection of eight years of bad government, not in their interests, under Obama and faced with more of the same, or worse, under Clinton. Nothing to do with religion.
Posted by Faustino, Monday, 14 August 2017 1:33:33 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
I had arguments with Sellick years ago which went nowhere, so I'll be brief. The advice of saints and sages over the ages to "Know thyself," "The Kingdom of Heaven is within you," etc, points to a universal truth, whether or not you believe in God. We might find useful advice in the Bible or other written sources, but we can directly experience reality only within the framework of our own minds and bodies. We are a microcosm of the universe and find truth within. We consist of particles of energy arising and passing away with great rapidity, no solidity, no continuing entity, no "I, me, mine" but a transient process. Understanding this, we can free ourselves of past conditionings, of the craving and aversion which constantly drive our reactions, learning not to react but to act with wisdom, in the interests of ourselves or others. There are elements of this in various religions, but it is most clearly expressed by the Buddha (who did not found a religion but taught a practice which each individual could follow, verifying it for themselves rather than depending on the external authority which Sellick holds dear).
Posted by Faustino, Monday, 14 August 2017 1:44:06 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
To my way of thinking 'The Church' and unfortunately Peter Sellick, are mixing religion with politics and the result is that God is therein hybridised with Caesar, which Christ warned against.

Man is corrupt and so is the church.

Salvation lies with God and not with Caesar or the church.
Posted by deadly, Monday, 14 August 2017 1:49:13 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
When it gets right down to it, what we need to consider is what the churches are teaching verses what the bible says. If the church ignores scripture, or teaches country to what the bible says, then it is wrong. If the indivual does this after reading the bible then they are wrong. But being familiar with it will not harm a person's faith. It will only help so they can have more means of discerning what is true, and what isn't concerning what's from God.

Arguing that the people of faith need the church I agree with. But not for the reasons that Sellick gives. People need eachother, good fellowship will help many people. That's the church body more then the church orginizations. That said it is good to have the insight of those who have studied and have good wisdom. In one of Paul's letters he gives recommendations for giving people the status of being an elder or a leader of the chuch communities.

No matter how it's looked at though, reading the bible is valuable to anyone of the Christian Faith. Sellick is dead wrong in his assessment that it should be removed from the common Christian's knowledge base.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Tuesday, 15 August 2017 10:57:38 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Faustino,

Why do you say that Buddha did not found a religion?

Don't the practices which he taught lead people to God?

It is one thing to verify a given path, yet much harder to stumble upon such a path on one's own.

---

Well said, Deadly!

---

Dear Not_Now.Soon,

«If the church ignores scripture, or teaches country to what the bible says, then it is wrong.»

The question is, whether the bible as we have it is a religious scripture.

We have plenty of evidence, including by reading between the lines of the bible itself, that the bible was contaminated in many places with politics. Many of the stories there, for example, were written or modified by the southern kings of Judea as propaganda to besmirch the northern kingdom of Israel and assert their own dominion as well as justify their own murderous behaviour.

Can the average person distinguish between the spiritual gems therein and the political rubbish and late modifications of the original text?

Some, unfortunately, both individuals and churches, fall for the politics.

«People need eachother, good fellowship will help many people. That's the church body more then the church orginizations»

Great observation - Buddha called it 'Sangha', from the Sanskrit 'Satsanga' - association with the virtuous.
Posted by Yuyutsu, Tuesday, 15 August 2017 2:57:08 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Yuyutsu, you hold that the bible (as we have it) has been corrupted. I have to come to other conclusion. Two reasons. 1). If God is real and did have any influence in the bible, then He can protect His words, and keep them safe. The first reason I do not believe the bible to be corrupted is because I trust God. 2). That reasoning then leads to the questioning of if the bible ever was scripture from God. After reading it, my findings are that God teaches through them and that they are reliable. The second reason for trusting the bible is semi spiritual experience reading the bible or reflecting on it through life. I agree with the idea that all scripture (Old and new Testiment) are Spirit filled.

If you can give examples of the corruption of the bible? So far I haven't heard any that stands with good merit. At least not from anyone who has faith in God. (Though I admit I've never had to look to disprove it.). The exceptions to that are from those who usually have no faith that God exists and their conclusion are usually based on the arguments where God doesn't exist. Those arguments are equally hard to trust, because of my own observations.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Tuesday, 15 August 2017 5:16:27 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Not_Now.Soon,

I am re-reading the book "That's Not What the Good Book Says" by Professors Avigdor Shinan and Yair Zakovitz. While I'm reading the original in Hebrew, they also wrote an English version: "From Gods to God". This review can explain my views on this matter: http://repository.upenn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1003&context=jewishstudies_papers

«1). If God is real and did have any influence in the bible, then He can protect His words»

But does He want to?
Can you point to anything that was not influenced by God?
Nothing of course can happen without God (it's even meaningless to speak of such), but given that God allows man to modify other things in this world, then why not this book?

«2). That reasoning then leads to the questioning of if the bible ever was scripture from God.»

How could anything possibly NOT be from God?

Parts of the bible indeed originated as scriptures by Prophets of God, but they were not the editors of the completed compilation.

The Old Testament can also be called "The National Heritage of the Jews". At some stage, the Jewish leadership collected and published as one volume all the documents which they considered important for keeping the nation together. This included spiritual wisdom, instructions and inspiration, but it also included historical stories and other secular materials. The two Professors trace in detail, using careful comparison within the bible itself and with other scriptures, legends, translations and classical interpretations, how the Old Testament was modified and censored.

«my findings are that God teaches through them and that they are reliable»

For you they are reliable: since you approach the bible with a pure heart, God will not let you down. YOU have these spiritual experiences, but others might not.
Posted by Yuyutsu, Wednesday, 16 August 2017 1:25:27 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
You can read Hebrew, Yuyutsu? That's awesome. Languages have always been hard for me. So for what it's worth, well done.

I hope you get some good stuff out of that book. I'd have my doubts though. It seems there's a few books each generation that try to rewrite the bible. (And several more philosophies that are unwritten or borrowed ideas of said books). I have my doubts on those books and it's become a categorical doubt towards those kinds of books. Moving on though, referring to referring to if God would protect what He influenced in the scriptures...

<<But does He want to?
Can you point to anything that was not influenced by God?
Nothing of course can happen without God (it's even meaningless to speak of such), but given that God allows man to modify other things in this world, then why not this book?>>

There's a verse where Jesus says that he did not come to abolish the law but to complete it. In that section He also said that not a jot or title will change till all is fufilled. This leads me to believe that yes God will protect His words.

As for things not influenced by God, I would say you're half right. God is in control and He is sovereign over everything. The rightous and the unrighteous, where even the wicked fall into place to be part of His plans, like His days of punishment to Isreal when they were exiled for their wickedness, God did not use a more rightous people to correct them but used the Babylon empire. This is the God I look to when I refer to God. However, God made laws for Isreal, even gave warnings and pridiction so of what would happen if they turn away from the covenant of the laws and the blessings assoicated with them. Reading later books what was warned about in Deuteromony happened to exactly in their exile. Everything is in His hands and under His influence, but there are still expectations to keep. A means of following Him or turning away.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Wednesday, 16 August 2017 6:02:13 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Continuing on Yuyutsu, you also said...

<<Parts of the bible indeed originated as scriptures by Prophets of God, but they were not the editors of the completed compilation.>>

The issue I have with this logic is that future prophets refer to older writings in the bible. And instead of correcting what was written as in to say something like "this is what it should say," those prophets use earlier references to their current audience. This continued even with Jesus, referencing bible verses as rabbi like teachings to the teachers of religion themselves. This would have been the perfect time to correct previous errors but instead, like the prophets before, Jesus confirms the verses He references. In order to trust the prophets you need to hold to their trust of bible texts.

<<How could anything possibly NOT be from God?>>

Seek a solid foundation, and a stable ground before moving forward on anything. There are things that are not from God, and it is for our sake as well as those around us to be discerning enough to know the difference. Not all things are good and some are in fact cruel, wicked, and evil. To put it another way not everything is healthy, and the dangers of some drugs are not something to count as being just as good as a new diet that give nutrients. If you would discern the evils of addiction and the poison that sucks people into something that they never were before, then you have the measure to recoginize that some things can come from God, and other things that are unhealthy, and draw us away from Him.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Wednesday, 16 August 2017 6:06:19 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Not_Now.Soon,

I was going to respond to your last posts and there is much I could have written in reply, but then I take no pleasure in undermining people's faith, so please permit me to leave it at that.

My own faith in God does not depend on the bible, but when someone else's does depend on the bible, who am I to disturb it and why would I want to do them such a cruel disservice?

I am just back tonight from a Taize service. We were singing and playing devotional music to God. I also read a psalm in the original Hebrew, followed by its English translation. Why care what people believe in - nobody there cares what I believe in either: we all come together to sing to God in good company, because it is good and well to do so, just as Psalm 92 says: "It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to make music to your name O most high, to proclaim your love in the morning and the truth in the watches of the night".
Posted by Yuyutsu, Thursday, 17 August 2017 1:09:13 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Yuyutsu. I'm sorry if I was undermining your faith. There are other good foundations in faith besides the bible. But I do think it is reliable. Wishing you well, and hoping you can forgive my posts.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Thursday, 17 August 2017 2:14:17 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Not_Now.Soon,

On the contrary, it is I who need to beg your forgiveness, it is your faith that I referred to, which I take no pleasure at shaking, but I might have done so in my earlier post and for that I am sorry.
Posted by Yuyutsu, Thursday, 17 August 2017 8:28:25 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
All students should be encouraged to read the Bible to enrich their appreciation of literature and the Arts. It is one of the world's great books.

It should be included in the literature curriculum and studied that way, as literature.

Where religion finds meaning that is up to its members. Tolerance oils the wheels of society.
Posted by leoj, Thursday, 17 August 2017 12:48:05 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
' My own faith in God does not depend on the bible, but when someone else's does depend on the bible, who am I to disturb it and why would I want to do them such a cruel disservice?'

Yuyutsu

A Christians faith does not depend on the bible either. Its depends on the One who claims to have inspired the bible. Many who say they believe the bible have done atrocious deeds just like those today who claim not to believe the bible. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is not optional if His words are to be true. To allow someone to believe and more importantly live a lie would be certainly very cruel.
Posted by runner, Thursday, 17 August 2017 1:08:51 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Hmm. Well Yuyutsu. I think we can both rest easier. Thank you for the apology. Though I don't think you could shake my faith very well (that's a good thing), nor my trust in the scriptures, but I appreaciate the respectful approach you've given. Runner seems to have laid out how I feel quite well actually. My faith in the bible stems from my faith in God. Trusting God I now also trust the bible. It would be easier to shake my hopes then to shake my faith in God. Thanks again for the consideration. :)
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Thursday, 17 August 2017 4:44:58 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Runner,

I can see and appreciate your point in the light of Not_Now.Soon's explanations. Hopefully this is what you meant.

Believing a lie and living a lie are two different things.

If in order to live the truth, one needs to believe a lie, then surely you will agree that it would be a small price to pay.

Similar to how we call superficial whims "skin deep", we could classify beliefs to be "brain deep" - just a few millimetres deeper into the skull.

For example, suppose one believes that "tomato" should be pronounced as "tumeyto" and the other believes that it should be pronounced as "tomaator": big deal, it makes neither of them more sinner than the other.

---

Dear Not_Now.Soon,

«It would be easier to shake my hopes then to shake my faith in God»

Thank you, I am relieved to hear this.

(Still, why would I even want to shake your hopes?)
Posted by Yuyutsu, Thursday, 17 August 2017 6:52:29 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
<<(Still, why would I even want to shake your hopes?)>>

Dear Yuyutsu. I don't think you would want to shake my hopes. I said this because it's been my own experience. From life aspects to faith aspects, my hopes have been shaken before, and quite drastically. I hope I'm past those stages of life, but here is my explaination.

If the best you can do or accomplish is almost average level for the magority of people, then you won't survive in a world that always wants the best. You'll be tossed aside eventually from jobs to relationships because of a fault that makes you subpar. For me this was a conclusion I held a few years ago after not being successful in work and not exoecting any better anywhere else. At that same time a relationship I thought would last broke off, and I went into a dark place. Not able to pull myself out of it, I had to add to the conclusion of being a failure in work due to speed always being a must, that my broken spirit would get tiring to others and I would lose friends, be unable to hold a romantic relationship, and even family would get sick of me.

It is not a hard transaction after coming to these conclusions that I could count God as doing the same. My faith in knowing God is there is unshakeable. My faith that He would want me though, or the possibilities of my actions in my depression removing His love; those were worries that plagued me at that time. Those kinds of worries aren't the first I've come across as far as faith goes, but they were the first time I thought to apply them to myself and so strongly.

(Continued)...
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Friday, 18 August 2017 3:46:53 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
In general, there are many different theologies and theories that speak of faith and being true to your faith. Being truely saved, being a true Christian, or actually having the Holy Spirit are a few of the ideas that those theories can build off of. And though I am currently out of that dark depression I held before, and I'm thankful that my conclusions have changes regarding my hopes in the world, I can say that if a person argues well enough, who knows thay might find a way to take my hope even in faith.

This isn't what I expect anyone to actually try, but they are things I've experienced once, so I can't say I won't experience them again.

My current conclusions are different then they were at that time. Today my faith in God is still there and my hopes are in Him. (Instead of the burden that I would fail Him and my hopes tied to my success as a Christian). God sent Jesus because He loved the world, even while it was in sin, not because they earned His love and deserved to be saved and rectified. Jesus called God His Father, and encouraged us who have faith in Jesus and God to be able to call God father as well. Looking at my own dad and knowing he would not want to see me fail, or create conditions to watch me suffer, I have come to the conclusions that God is the same way with more understanding and more love then I get from my very good dad that I was born to. So I should have faith and trust in God as a child has faith and trust in their parents.

from there, my understanding takes a heavy foundation from the bible. God gave it to us, so it's reliable. It's not a lie, a trick, or corrupted through time. It's God's written words for us through the generations. If a person hasn't understood His love of His teachings through their life experience; they can come to grips with those through the scripture.
Posted by Not_Now.Soon, Friday, 18 August 2017 4:06:48 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Dear Not_Now.Soon,

Thank you for sharing.
Posted by Yuyutsu, Saturday, 19 August 2017 8:09:47 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
  1. Pages:
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. All

About Us :: Search :: Discuss :: Feedback :: Legals :: Privacy