With a long hiatus on the blog now over. I thought I would share some things that God has really been showing me over the months I have been quiet.
This journey began while listening to a few podcasts between dropping Nathanael off at nursery and looking after Judah. It always seems to be when I least expect it that God will prompt me to start searching things out. The podcasts were all from different speakers, teachers and mums but a reoccurring theme throughout all of them was Biblical Literacy.
With different audiences in mind all these speakers stressed the same point, that within our churches, sat right very next to us or across from us are men and women who have a barely casual relationship with their Bible.
Now to be quite frank I was at first convicted, I was transitioning from the time of a small infant with irregular naps to my eldest starting nursery. The times spent when Nathanael was younger pouring over the latest Bible study during his nap was seeming a bit far gone!
Yet these teachers and speakers with passion in their voices, close to tears and frustration were not speaking of the seasons we have in life with small children or ill health, or stretched seasons of responsibility that will pass.
They were speaking of men and women, perhaps sat in churches for years who will not open their Bible for themselves, the Word of God, and as I sat and listened I too became upset, and concerned and frustrated and baffled at why, myself included would I neglect time spent with God in his Bible.
We jump up and down when we see a film with a hint of a Christian message (I mean we really do in the UK) or we chatter about the latest Hillsong release and have to play it the next week at Church and in the car and all-day long.
Yet the most tangible way that God communicates to us is through His written Word.
He could have done it in any other way, yet he chose a book.
Perhaps its because we have to be intentional, perhaps its because we can’t let others carry us in worship through it, or have other people read it for us which is why He chose a book. Who knows!
On the State of Theology, you can take a look at a set of poll results completed by American Christians in 2016.
21% Strongly Disagreed that “The Bible alone is the written Word of God”
21% Strongly Agreed that “By the good deeds I do, I partly contribute to earning my place in heaven”
42% of those who self-identify as Evangelicals Strongly Disagree that “Even the smallest sin deserves eternal damnation”
I actually think if they took a poll in the UK it would be far worse. 42% believe that if they only have a “little sin” it doesn’t matter yet we read in Romans that “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” ALL! and as it goes on in chapter 6 that the wages of sin is death. That is what sin deserves but through Jesus we have been given the gift of eternal life.
What to do with this? I have to confess I have been raging to Luke about this and a fair few others too, if I am talking about the Bible its likely I am talking about why people are spending more time on application rather than comprehension.
Before Jesus ascended into heaven he said “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” we hear this regularly in church as we seek to look outward in our communities and to share God’s love with others.
Yet we hurry past the next part “and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you”
There you have it, teach them to obey everything I have commanded you. How would you even seek to try and accomplish that if you don’t know what is written in the Bible?
The Bible are where His commands are, this is the place to be renewed and strengthened and it is a continual process it is not just for the new believer it is for the 90-year-old, saved since they were 10 Christian. It is for the man, the woman, my 4-year-old son. There are no blue parts of the Bible there are no pink parts of the Bible.
I am tired, weary and sick of these topical Bible studies for women on the default Esther, Ruth or Proverbs 31. There is more to the Old Testament than those 3 sections.
Why limit yourself to just searching out women of the Bible there is truth enough about God in the whole text, that is why it is there!
We ignore the Old Testament and cram past it in weeks to spend months on the New.
What did all the New Testament authors know? They knew the Old Testament.
I suppose in all of this post is be prepared on my Blog for posts about Biblical Literacy and comprehension, be prepared for posts on sharing how I study the Bible. If that isn’t your thing, that’s great there will be plenty of updates on the family and favourites and the rest.
Yet I am sad, discouraged but also empowered and purposed to start jumping up and down about knowing your Bible for yourself.