This picture appeared on Twitter, it is sentiment that is regularly repeated and 160 characters in Twitter are not enough to discuss such a big and important topic.

Why is this statement made so often?

For credibility?

Some denominations do not have a long history or heritage.

Their credibility therefore depends on being a church that is bible based rather than how long it has been established or being enshrined in the constitution of the country.

The answer here is to grow a good reputation, after all every religious weirdo and cult claims to be bible based!

What to people gain from it?

This reason is not so positive, it seems that there are those who wish to stand in judgement and condemn others.

  • Over other christians because their beliefs or practices or denomination is different to theirs.
  • Over Non Christian people because of their lifestyle, gender or sexual orientation.

The very book they use to justify themselves clearly says do not judge others and strongly warns about a looking at the splinter in someone else’s eye when they have a log in their eye.

I won’t say any more because I run the risk of falling into the same trap they have.

This quote suggest a better attitude:

It’s the Holy Spirit’s job to convict. God’s job to judge, and my job to love. – Billy Graham

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing?

Then there is the Dunning-Kruger effect – it is explained on Wikipedia and it is why it is difficult to have a reasonable discussion on a range of topics.

When people resort to abuse and personal attacks then in my opinion they have lost the argument and I stop reading or listening to them.

Context and Theology – Hermeneutics and other big words?

I believe the bible, but I also engage my brain.

My 40 plus years as a Christian has taught me that not everything preached in churches is correct.

That is not to point a finger at others, as I would include myself in this.

Key things to consider here:

  • The books in the Bible were written at specific times in the context of specific cultures.
  • While the message and meaning are unchanged, the language used to convey them has always reflected the contemporary culture.
  • Words used 10 years ago do have the same meaning today.
  • We have to learn to handle it correctly, with the help of our God given intelligence and the help of the holy spirit.
  • What was “right” in the past with the benefit of hindsight is not – the bible was used to justify slavery and sexual inequality.

On a recent holiday I saw a poster outside a church advertising a debate (probably someone preaching) about creation vs evolution.

Defending a literal 7 days is a leap of faith too far for most rational people, including most christians.

I personally believe it is not one versus the other.
Both theories / accounts are explaining how the world as we know came about.
One describes the mechanism, the other tells the story and the reason.

Does faith cease to have meaning because we can dig up dinosaur bones on the Isle of Wight?

But this is a different debate…