Monday, June 09, 2008
What I Believe (Part 1)
Note: This subject is too big to address in one post. I’ll be posting throughout the week, in several parts, to allow room for discussion. Feel free to leave comments, in agreement or even strongly against, with your name, homepage, email, or anonymous. I don't delete comments unless they're inappropriate. Who knows what God can accomplish amongst his people when we share our hearts…

What do I believe? Years ago I chose my life verse as 1 Peter 3:15, "But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander." In spite of sharing here for over two years, I apparently haven't been clear. Shame on me.

The last writing I did touched, albeit accidentally, on what I believe about homosexuality, actually what I think is God’s take on it. My intention was to do a fun little post about my first experience with therapy, mixed in with sweet memories of my first kiss from Danny Bacon. (I recalled his name correctly while planting marigolds this week. He wasn't Tommy after all.) I don’t have a confrontational bone in my body, so if you’d asked me to write on my stand on homosexuality I would have politely declined. But here I am.

I don’t have it all figured out. Some parts of scripture I don’t understand. Some I just don’t like. Some I find myself asking, how does that play out in today’s culture since I don’t think Jesus wants us ‘cutting off our hands’ or taking 'an eye for an eye’? That 'current culture card' seems to be something we play for our own comfort or convenience, or sometimes to keep our hearts from breaking. It’s one thing to say whether I’m for or against war, it’s quite another if my son is over there serving. It’s one thing to say where I stand on abortion, another if I or someone I love has that choice in their past. When we know what we believe, and our world gets rocked by some personal hurt or loss, and we start taking another look and change our stand, our belief, then maybe we've put ointment on a wound we're not sure is ever going to heal otherwise. 'Personal' can change everything because our hearts can only bear so much. But it shouldn't. It should change how we feel, what we wish for, what we pray for, but not what we believe. It doesn't change what scripture actually says, just the way we see, or sometimes, interpret it.

The first time someone told me about submission of women to their husbands, I was a very new christian. The more I learned about it, the less I thought of the idea. When I found out it was Paul, and not Jesus, then I thought I could just go around that one. It took me a few years to learn that 'all scripture is God-breathed, and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.' (2 Tim. 3:16), even the parts, written by Paul, that I didn't much like. I'm not really crazy about tithing, or trying to avoid gossiping or envy, and I've even been known to lust now and then, but no free tickets to those either. It's not pick and choose, nor 'interpret' away.

Books have been written on the subject (whether scripture can and should be taken literally in today’s culture), and probably every one of those sticky subjects within – are women still to be silent, can they preach, serve as elders, what about head-coverings, sexual relations during menstrual cycles, (Leviticus 18:22), tithing, marriage, divorce, remarriage, etc. so I won’t be attempting that here. I’m not qualified and don’t have the time or desire anyway, and I don't have all the answers. I didn’t go to a Bible college, I actually didn’t go to any college. But my Bible has gotten beaten up over the years, I’ve sat in a lot of Sunday morning pews under preaching that involved looking at original Greek wording, looked up some Greek words of my own in Bible studies, etc. Not that you'll hear me saying I understand it all, or know it all. Hopefully you won’t hear anyone saying that. Except maybe J. Vernon McGee, he might have been able to claim that. Okay, add Billy Graham, maybe him too. They're about my only two exceptions.

I believe all scripture to be the inspired word of God, written over a vast amount of time, by many authors with many styles. Some scripture was given to guide believers on how to live at that time, to protect their health, or to straighten out problems in the early church such as women squabbling, or how to share wealth when living in a community where some had too little. When Jesus told believers (in Matthew 5:38-42) to 'turn the other cheek' and to 'give their tunic to whoever wanted to sue them, he wasn't referring just specifically to that situation, but rather how to handle being persecuted in general. I don't believe, however, that any immoral act labeled as sin when scripture was written has changed since then, just because it's become tolerable, even vogue, in our society today. I don't see God changing his mind on what is and isn't sin. I'm pretty sure there's a difference between whether or not women need to cover their heads today and whether pre-marital sex is still wrong or suddenly moved to the 'okay with God' list. If what is 'sin' changes enough, then maybe eventually Jesus didn't even need to die?! I don't think so.All that said, I thought this a good place to begin:

‘I believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord’…

I believe God is a someone, and he’s a he. There is no evidence in Scripture, anywhere that I know of, that God is a female. Fathers are males. He created everything we see and everything we don’t. His Son was Jesus Christ. Both of them have always been and neither is a feeling as Oprah apparently has decided. Seems to me all that money somehow got to her good ole Baptist roots. I'm convinced she must have a grandmother or great aunt or someone out there shaking their heads, wondering what happened to all those times they took her to church, trying to get her soul saved. Admittedly, I'm not a big Oprah fan, I don't really enjoy talk shows. I realize she's got the #1 talk show in the country, so I know I won't win any points here for slamming her. I'm obviously in the minority. I just happen to think the woman is confused, and doing damage when she opens her mouth to such nonsense that 'God is a feeling'. A little like Rosie, Oprah does a lot of good, but it doesn't cancel out the junk she shares that misleads people, that might lead them to an eternity of being lost. Just maybe.

While we're on the subject of talk show hosts, don't even get me started on Jerry Springer. I even find Regis and Kelly a bit wearing. I do somewhat enjoy David Letterman but he's on too late, so it's more of an enjoying in theory than in reality.

Enough to chew on for a day or so. Again, I'm trying to "do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. " It's not my intention to attack anyone, or any one group here, but rather to be clear on what I believe, and why. BTW, most of the time I'm still not real crazy about submission. Unfortunately I haven't heard yet that God's changed his stand on it either.I'll be back later with more of 'Bev's take on the Apostle's Creed'. Whether you join me is entirely up to you, but I hope you will.


  posted at 8:00 AM

Subscribe in a reader
Past Chats
  • April 2006
  • May 2006
  • June 2006
  • July 2006
  • August 2006
  • September 2006
  • October 2006
  • November 2006
  • December 2006
  • January 2007
  • February 2007
  • March 2007
  • April 2007
  • May 2007
  • June 2007
  • July 2007
  • August 2007
  • September 2007
  • October 2007
  • November 2007
  • December 2007
  • January 2008
  • February 2008
  • March 2008
  • April 2008
  • May 2008
  • June 2008
  • July 2008
  • August 2008
  • September 2008
  • October 2008

  • Filed Away Neatly
    Busy Buzz
    Creative License
    Dusty Stuff
    Family Affair
    Girl Talk
    Glimpse of the Heart
    Photo Album
    Slavin' Over the Stove
    The Price is Right

    Search This Blog


    Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

    Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

    About Me

    Girl Raised in the South

    I have a deep, abiding love for full octane coffee, sewing, knitting, quilting, reading, cooking, gardening, God and my family - not in that order.

    My Complete Profile

    Family is Everything
  • A Chelsea Morning - Barb
  • And Baby Makes Three - Leslie
  • Creative Worship - Chris
  • Flight Song - Mom
  • In The Midst of It - Sarah
  • At A glance - Krissy
  • In A Moment - Mandy

  • Recent Comments

    Fruit of the Spirit

    Family Friendly

    Family Friendly Blogroll []

    Family Friendly Blogroll [-]

    Blog Design by:

    Powered by:
    Powered By Blogger

    Meter by: