The Devil's Confusion

Let me get this straight: you believe in God and Jesus, but you don't believe in the Bible? Confused much?

Introduction

The thing about reading the Bible is there's so much to consider: language, assumptions, culture, etc. People can read Genesis 3 multiple times back to back and still come away thinking Adam and Eve ate an apple. Why? Because it's been engrained in their mind. So, when they read "she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat," they consider that proof that an apple was eaten, despite the fact no apple was mentioned. When I read, I like to see what different commentators say, I like to see what different denominations think, and I like to look at the history behind what I'm reading (if I could read Hebrew, I'd want to read the original too). I want to shake my mind of preconceived notions that are not Biblical.

One of those notions that I'm currently investigating is how the word "Gentile" is defined. One of the things that stayed with me after I moved on from Deuteronomy 28 and investigating the Black Israelite Theory/Movement, was the allegation that descendants of Ham are not Gentiles. Naturally, I started to do some digging which brought me to the most bizarrely interesting article and comment section.

A Bizarre Post

First, there's the issue of the question "who are the Gentiles?" which I will discuss in the next post. The article tries to answer that question which is why I started reading it in the first place. The article didn't really answer all my questions, but I thought perhaps I missed some view points, so I checked the comment section to see what other people gleaned from the text.

As I ventured in to the comments, I discovered that the author kept saying weird phrases like "God or his Christ" or putting The Bible in quotations. Then he said "I do not view what is called “Scriptures” or the “Epistles” as truth." Yet, he continued to quote from the Bible and later affirmed that he believed in Jesus. So I kept asking myself, how does one believe in Jesus but not the Bible? I mean, how would you confirm that He is the Messiah? How would you even know there was a Messiah to look for? Unless God is speaking directly to this man and revealing the truth, I don't know how he would figure out this information. Even so, how would you know if God was speaking or the devil?

For some reason, I kept reading. Perhaps God wanted me to get to a particular comment, or maybe I was just mystified by the confusion, but eventually he said something that sort of made sense.

A comment from the author "explaining" his view of the Bible (transcribed below)
Good question. Thank you for asking as it will give me an opportunity to explain.

No, I do not believe “The Bible” as “The Word of God.” I believe that Jesus is “The Word of God.”

Everything written in this book – The Bible – is not from God (The Word of God). Satan is quoted in it; are Satan’s words the Word of God? Of course not.

Only those things that God Himself utters and what Christ utters is “The Word of God.” Not a book.

I am attempting to reach my readers to help them see what has happened subtly over the years: A book has been elevated to a lofty position that it should not have. It cannot be “The Word of God” and Jesus also be “The Word of God.”

What I am saying here is that we are to believe in Christ, not in a book. (Luke 9:35)

Yes, this book called by men “The Bible” does contain things that God and Christ said. It contains things that Christ taught his Apostles. But that does not make the book itself the Word of God and something we are supposed to venerate and believe in. We are to believe in Christ, not believe in The Bible.

Also, I quote from the Bible not for my sake, but for the sake of those who insist on “believing in it.” I usually quote that which Christ and God has spoken.

Notice that I NEVER say things like, “The Bible teaches” or “The Bible says.” The Bible does not teach, Christ teaches.
I had an individual say to me that “The Bible says” at John 14:6 that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.

I explained to the individual that the Bible does not say that. He became upset at me and opened up his Bible and showed be John 14:6 and read it to me. He said to me, “You see, it does say that.”

I said, “No it does not say that.” He thought I was crazy and really became very agitated at me.

Then I explained to him that “The Bible” does not say that, Jesus Christ says it.

My point is that so many ascribe to a book (that men named, made holy, authorized and call The Word of God) the things that Christ himself says.

That shows that they believe in the Bible and not in Christ. If one truly believes in Christ, they would NEVER ascribe to a book the things that he says. When they ascribe to a book (The Bible) the sayings and teachings of Christ, then they reduce him down to someone other than The Word of God – the ONLY Word of God.

No book by any name should occupy such a holy station. The title of “The Word of God” belongs only to Christ, not to a book.

It was the Son of God that God sent, not a book. And it was to that Son, that God commanded us to listen to. Not to a book. (Luke 9:35)

We access God’s vast knowledge, wisdom and understanding not through a book, but through His Son via prayer.

If we think God speaks to us through a book, then we are saying that what Christ taught at John 14:6 is a lie. The Bible would be “that way.” It cannot be as Christ is only “the way.”

We are to believe in “a person” (Christ) not a book.

Many defend the book more than championing Christ as the ONLY Word of God. R. Jerome Harris

Playing With Words

I believe the author is playing with words; he wants people to put their faith in Jesus as opposed to worship a book, or so it seems. To an extent, I understand where he's going. We shouldn't get so caught up in the Bible that we forget about God. An example is that growing up, my grandmother used to sleep with a Bible under her pillow, she said it kept away bad dreams. My mom always insists a Bible should be the first thing brought in to a new home/apartment. These ideas are superstitious at best (which isn't a trait God promotes), but idolatry at worst. The Bible has become an "image" of God, and you are no longer seeing the power of God, but assuming the power is in an object. The Bible cannot protect you from nightmares, only God can.

At the same time, while I am guilty of saying the Word (which should refer to Jesus) but meaning the word (referring to the Bible), there is a still a level of belief that has to be given to the Bible. If the Bible is merely a book, like the Qur'an or the Vedas, or Harry Potter, how do you come by the Gospel of Jesus, or the establishment of God? To discredit the Bible is make yourself a theist. Based on this man's logic, the 10 Commandments are the words of Moses that are attributed to God and they may or may not be trustworthy. With his logic that people may have tampered with the Bible (which many translations have been tampered with), people can pick and chose what they want to believe whenever they want (likely based on personal preference). This is exactly how the church operates. You have scores of people who profess to believe in Jesus, but doubt the Bible. They believe in evolution over creation, that things considered sin in the Bible (premarital sex, homosexuality, lying, breaking the Sabbath, failing to help the less fortunate, etc.) are not really sins. People elevate the preacher's word over the words of the Bible (despite Jesus warning us of false prophets and false doctrines).

The Issue of False Doctrines

How do I know there are false doctrines and prophets? Aside from people drinking the kool-aid only to end up dead, the Bible quotes Jesus as telling us this. If we say the Bible is not the source for which we study the Word of God, then you could assume that every doctrine is valid; the only way a doctrine would become invalid is if God Himself told you. Of course, the truth is, the devil can talk to you too, so you would never know if it was God telling you this, or if it was the devil.

I agree that you should be cautious of which translation you are reading. There are many translations that conflict upon each other (a comparison of the KJV vs. the NIV can be seen here). Which version is right is an ongoing debate. Personally, I wish I'd taken ancient Hebrew and ancient Greek for my foreign languages instead of Spanish and Arabic (this might be a task I take on in the near future). Is it possible that they all have errors? Is it possible that the true message is split across multiple translations? Is it possible that some Bibles were created to water down the message and to deceive? I think the answer to all of these is yes. You should not blindly read translations without studying this controversy. There are people who are for the King James Version (KJV) only, there are people who believe some versions are safe while others aren't and there are people who think all versions are fine. This is a topic for a post by itself, I'm just introducing it to validate the author's point that we should be some what skeptical when reading.

However, you have to pick a side. Either you have a preferred translation, you think all translations are fine, or you think no translation is fine. If you think no translation is fine, you have taken off a piece of armor. The first step to not believing in God is not believing in the Bible. The Bible witnesses the testimony of God and Jesus. You are given the history, background information, prophecies, as well as direct teachings in the Bible's pages, but the moment you distrust the validity of the book, you distrust the validity of the people in the book, including God and Jesus.

The Author of Confusion

This ideology has the devil written all over it. It's confusion at its finest. The devil convinces people to turn away from the Bible. It's a 2-step program; first wean them from the source of the truth, then snatch them from God. Once you no longer cite the Bible as truth, but claim to believe in the God of the Bible and His Son, how can you ward off false prophets? How do you defend your belief? Jesus quoted Deuteronomy to shut down the devil's attempt at temptation multiple times. What will you quote?

Becoming closer to God is about a whole lot more than simply going to church or praying. Think of it like this. I could talk to you for hours upon hours, but if I never stopped to listen to you, what have I learned about you? God already knows everything about us, so in a one sided conversation, we're selling ourselves short. Reading the written word that He's left for us, allows us a glimpse at what He's trying to tell us; it gives us a template for His voice so that when we do hear Him speak, we know it's Him and not the devil (important distinction). For those on the path of truly studying God's Word, please don't fall for the devil's confusion.
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Author Image Author Image I love reading the Word of God. With prayer God's Word reveals so much: from comfort to temperance, from perspective to affirmation. Digging into the depths of the Word, cross-referencing history, language and time differences, is a passion of mine. In March of 2015 I decided to go back through the Bible doing an in depth study on each section I read. Eventually I decided to share my journal of notes as I partake in this journey. I hope you are blessed by God and inspired to pursue a deeper relationship with Him. I love reading and learning about God, nature, and science. I am interested in how it all connects. The Creator's fingerprints are all over his creation. We can learn so much about Him and how we came to be by exploring the world around us. Join me as I explore the world and draw closer to the One who created it all.
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