Centuries ago, people were told they couldn’t read the Bible because it was written in a language they didn’t speak. Now, we’re told that it’s too hard for us to understand. We’re smarter than that. Lady of the Lake, original oil painting by Steve Henderson; licensed open edition print at Great Big Canvas, Framed Canvas Art, and iCanvasART.
How much education does the average Christian need in order to be qualified to study the Bible?
Within conventional, establishment Christianity — the kind overwhelmingly and depressingly practiced in countries like the one in which I was born and live, the United States — we are not immune to a fascination with education, and even the smallest, rural churches point with pride to their Pastor with the PhD, convinced that, because of his advanced seminary education and ability to name drop Greek and Hebrew words, he knows so much more than the rest of them.
(In reality, he knows how to use Strong’s Concordance and a lexicon, resources available to any of the rest of us.)
While we are not required, yet, to undergo licensing to study the Bible for ourselves, the subtle pressure is there among us, as church congregants are firmly encouraged to join small groups, under the shepherding aegis of an approved leader who walks them, step by agonizing step, through workbooks, worksheets, and pop-culture books by pop-culture preachers expostulating about Jesus, the Bible, and the abundant, purpose-full, intentional and missional life we are supposed to be living.
Please follow the link to the rest of the story, Are You Qualified to Study the Bible? at my blog Commonsense Christianity. As regular readers know, I am able to post only a teaser, so if you don’t follow the link, at least answer the question: Are You Qualified to Study the Bible? Don’t say no.
Click on the image to see Grammar Despair at Amazon.com
And by the way, if you do follow the link, you’ll read about how many people simply cannot answer the grammar question, When do I say Him and Me, versus He and I? If this question bothers you, along with others — the difference between They’re, Their, and There, say, or How Do You Capitalize a Title? Then follow the link to my book Grammar Despair, which offers very quick, very simple answers to questions like these that bother a lot of people.