The Bible is a difficult book. Every day, when I read the Bible, I am challenged. It challenges the way I think. It challenges the way I behave. It challenges me to grow. The teachings of Jesus Christ are difficult and challenging.
The problem is that many church leaders, in attempting to be "prophets" to a new generation, explicitly contradict the teachings of the Lord they claim to serve. They believe they have the authority to teach new doctrines even if those doctrines conflict with what we find in the Holy Scriptures.
A new semester begins for me in two weeks. The questions I will be raising with my students are basic ones:
- Are we willing to accept the challenges of the Scriptures and try to live by them?
- Or will we adapt what Scripture says to our own times and agendas?
- Do we have authority to reinterpret the teachings of Scripture?
- Or is it our role to pass them on?
- Are we ready to pray, not, "Lord, bless me," or "Lord, use me," but "Lord, glorify yourself in me whatever it takes, whatever it means, wherever it sends me"?
Greek means absolutely nothing if we never get around to dealing with these issues.