Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Jefferson Bible

If you had the opportunity would you re-write the Bible?  This is assuming that you alone would have the enormous amount of time to undertake such as task.  Today I ran across an article about Thomas Jefferson who was doing just that.

According to the article Jefferson was editing out parts of the bible that he didn't believe or found too mythical for his mind.  So I ask you again - if you could, would you re-write the Bible?  What would you change and what would you insert?  As a man of faith, I have always operated under the belief that there is no way that I will ever completely understand even a small part of the Bible.  Sure some of the historical data appears accurate, but historians have for years found difficulty with incorrect time lines as compared to other sources.  When archaeologists have participated in "digs" in the Holy Land they have left more confused than informed on many occasions when sites mentioned in the Bible just could not be found or were finally located far from where the Bible indicated they should be.  

Does this mean the Bible is wrong and we should re-write it?  This deacon says no - emphatically No!  The Bible is a book of faith - a love letter from God to His people.  Through the various books of the Bible we are told how God reacted with and to His chosen ones and how in the course of time, all of us were invited into that relationship.  It's a tale of a Heavenly Father who has laid out a plan for each one of us - what to seek and how to seek - how to act and how to respond - when to pray and how to pray.  The Bible is a road map - for each of us to follow to our final destination with our Heavenly Father, with His son - Jesus and all the angels and saints who have gone before us.  Faith is a journey - a pilgrimage - and we each travel our own way - with Bible in hand - to remind us how God loves and encourages all His people.

Deacon Dale 

1 comment:

  1. Faith is a gift from the Holy Spirit. Jefferson attempting to edit the bible shows a lack of faith, and don't we all seem to do that when we attempt to edit out something taught to us through scripture or the teaching of The Church that makes us uncomfortable or even angry.

    We either edit it out of our lives or we find a way to spin it to make ourselves feel better about what is really being said and taught to us.

    There are those hot button issues that makes everyone feel uncomfortable and yet we feel that everyone "has their own opinion and a right to it" and that is somehow OK. The truth is, it is not always OK and we may be called to help correct the misunderstanding.

    I am sure that Jefferson himself today (as he now looks from a heavenly perspective--hopefully) would be the first to admit his attempt to edit the Bible was one of the greatest waste of time in his life. But, for what ever the reason he attempted to do so, something so disturbed him toward this action that he began the process. It probably stemmed from his own personal pride or in two word, his sins. The truth is most of us are probably just too lazy to take on such a daunting task as edit the bible--though we do every time something doesn't quite fit in our own lives.

    The teaching and understanding of the Eucharist alone is the one place in the Bible that even Christ (God) lost His disciples and as it says...they returned to their former ways of life. Those disciples that left wanted to edit this part out as they could not accept it and realized that Christ left them no other option to "spin it their way".

    Every time I try and understand something differently when our priests or deacons teach us what the Church is teaching, I always find out they were trying to get me to let go of certain sins in my own life. Editing it out or spinning it was just my feeble attempt to hide my sins or protect my pride.

    With all due respect to Thomas Jefferson, as one of the greatest minds in the history of our country, his action to edit the Bible to his liking reveals that he was still a man tainted by sin and in need of The One who saves all of us (past, present and future)--Jesus Christ.

    Marty Reynolds


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