Something that never ceases to surprise me is how greatly the church emphasizes what is a “literal” vs. “nonliteral” translation of the gospel. Like arguing over which passages should be interpreted as more relevant, or trying to convince one another of one tidy handy dandy interpretation of who God is.
First of all, that’s nonsense. If you truly believe the Bible is the truth, then you know from having a personal relationship with God via the Holy Spirit via Christ that he is a multifaceted God, with various aspects to his character. Is it wise to object to how others view God in terms of his living scripture, so long as it still jives with his Holy Spirit? Do you really have the need to control God that much?
If God is going to do something, or make it known, he will do that thing regardless. Regardless of anyone’s bitching or moaning or claiming to know better. Why are we trying to limit who he is? Do you really not understand that if God is bigger than you might see, that may be in the best interests of those who call upon him? Wouldn’t you want him to be the strong one? Why have we dragged our desire to compete for scriptural supremacy into the gospel? Christ died for that.
If you find truth and love in an understanding or image of God, that should be yours to keep so long as it is convicted through the Holy Spirit. Why try to wrestle away how someone else understands the Creator? If you do such spiritual violence unto others, I really don’t want to stick around to see what becomes of you.
As humans, it should be a default understanding that we don’t know everything, specifically for those who have been redeemed through Christ Jesus. If you live to serve yourself, you will be threatened by genuine expressions of a saving faith. If you don’t, you will have the capacity to test and welcome new understandings in a spirit of love. I resent how convoluted this nearly transparent spiritual process has become, especially when those who claim to know better actively silence the people who’s faith they are called to protect. Justice will come for you like a fire if you blaspheme the name of the Holy Spirit.
If we focus on what God most sounds like rather than testing messages for his spirit of truth, we will be sure that our faith only “sounds right”, without giving it the truth it needs to grow straight, if it grows at all. Those in leadership should know better, and those who have a saving faith shouldn’t give all spiritual authority to people who have never walked in the spirit and exist only to check of tic marks in their bucket lists. Its not enough to only cash in a pittance of this great gift that’s been sent to us. How can you care so little?
Church should be a place where you can fail with dignity, not a den of wolves or a game of make believe Jesus. If you pursue the truth and allow it to speak for you, you will inevitably be guided out of the places and understandings that would inevitably do you harm. The reason it’s not right for us to bicker about what scripture is or isn’t meant to be interpreted exactly this way or that is because there is already someone who has a job for that, and his name is the Holy Spirit. If you don’t spend time with him or know him, it kind of makes sense that you would waste your time arguing about things that would be made crystal clear if only you had the guts to listen. You dont have to be perfect to obey, but it’s a lot more strenuous than assigning the truth in scripture to be someone else’s problem. Do you really want to find out that lukewarm is not the best state of being from your own personal experience?
The fact of that matter is, God can do whatever he wants. It’s part of his sovereignty. It’s part of the truth. If you resent his hold over your life, not only will you not enjoy it and close your heart to his blessings, but I bet you it won’t be long before he gives you over to sin and you have to start from scratch, freshly humbled. That, or you forget him completely. It’s true that God never forsakes us, but what happens when we forsake him? Squabbles are not worth dying for.