|Original image used with permission- thanks to Amidst the Chaos!|
A couple days ago, I tripped over the leg of the ladder that’s sitting outside the bathroom door. It's serving as a towel rack for the moment- yay home renovations!
Fortunately, it didn’t fall over and dent my hardwood floors, and I did a really ungraceful gyrate thing that kept me from ending up on the hardwood floors.
I felt pretty dumb.
Because really, who trips over a giant ladder that’s been sitting there for four months?
Someone walking around in pitch dark, that’s who.
So often, when it comes to the Bible, I feel like I’m groping around in confusion.
I get to a passage that doesn’t fit into my view of who God is, or who I am, or just a passage that seems completely random and not at all important—and how am I supposed to apply this to my life? Why does this matter, or how could this be? There must be some sort of mistake.
When I’m reading on my own (like, not through a guided study or not reading in a group or not reading with my husband), I tend to stick to the Psalms. Most of the time, I “get” the Psalms. They make sense to me.
The Psalms, of course, is where we read,
“Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light for my path.” –Psalm 119:105
I get to that verse and, well, I’ve heard it before, so sure. It’s familiar, so it makes sense. It fits into the Christian-ese that I’ve built up over years of Sunday School and singing that song at Camp.
But when I really stop to and hear the words, I can’t help but think, “…. Really, though?”
Because so often in my own life, God’s word feels less like a light to my feet, and a little more like tripping over a ladder in the dark.
In his book “Taking God at His Word,” Kevin DeYoung argues that there are four main doctrines about Scripture … doctrines that Scripture itself defines for us.
Clarity is one of them.
God’s Word is clear- that’s DeYoung’s view on it.
I’ll be honest, I got to that point in the book and thought, “Yeah, he’s lost me.”
Because if the Bible was really all that clear, then why do we argue about the meaning of it in our different denominations?
How come I don’t “get it” more often than not? People have been studying this Book for the past two thousand years and so far, we can’t agree on this thing. How could it possibly be clear?
In all honesty, there are lots of things about the Bible that we argue about. Lots of things that professors and pastors and monks have studied exhaustively … and still haven’t figured it out.
But God’s Word is for us. It was given to us so we could know the way.
It’s for me- the busy office lady with a blog.
It’s for that kid with the bell on his bike, tearing around the parking lot, teetering on only one training wheel.
It’s for the farmer in Indonesia who comes home exhausted and blistered.
It’s for the pastor and the professor.
It’s for the man in prison, alone with only his time and his thoughts.
It’s for you- you with your schedule and relationships and responsibilities.
We can read the very Word of God. We can know Him better. We can come to trust in His Son and the hope of a future in heaven, together.
I don’t think I’ll ever fully understand the entire Bible. It’s a pursuit: knowing Him better, through His Word. I hope it will last me my whole life, in my humble, uneducated way. I know that it will hit my heart in different places, in different seasons of life- that’s part of what makes it a living, breathing Book.
In the main things, in the vital things, the Bible is clear.
Anyone can pick it up and see that God loves us. That He comes after us, even when we run from Him. That He is patient with His people.
And most importantly, the Bible is clear that Christ, the very Son of God, came to earth.
Jesus was born, lived a perfect life, and then allowed himself to be killed on a cross. For us. Then, he had victory over death and rose again, and by trusting in him, we can also have eternal life.
It’s all there. It’s clearly stated.
This is the way. Walk in it.
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