|What's wrong with this?|
The book of the day is The Most Misused Verses in the Bible: Surprising Ways God's Word is Misunderstood, by Eric J. Bargerhuff.
What follows is a littlelike a review, but mostly a look at some specific verses. It's influenced by Bargerhuff's chapter, though not dependent on it.
A Bit About the Rest of the BookLater in the book the verses about "Ask anything in My name," "All things work together for good," "He never gives us more than we can handle," and about a dozen others are discussed. Should make interesting reading, though maybe you should look elsewhere if you want a really indepth discussion. The last page recommends a book called Out of Context, by Richard L. Schultz, which looks more like a principles-of-the-matter book. (CBD's slideshow excerpt discusses the Prayer of Jabez.)
The VersesHere i want to simply point out these three:
- "Do not judge so that you will not be judged." This is Matthew 7:1; context is 1-5, as well as the entire Sermon on the Mount, which holds up a very high standard of personal righteousness throughout.
- "My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins." James 5:19-20
- And the one misquoted above (did you catch it?) Galatians 6:1-2
A Problemi've noticed a tendency inside and outside the church to think that Christians get it right all the time, and that people who don't always get it right, aren't Christians. Not so.* We need each other to get it right. That's WHY we're supposed to go to church, though maybe it doesn't always look like it:
not forsaking our own assembling together,as is the habit of some, but encouraging
one another. Hebrews 10:25a
A Surprising Solution
Yet Jesus (quoted in Matthew), James, and the writer of Hebrews rest on a foundation of Christians meeting together & encouraging each other.
They even expect this encouragement to do right will take forms that look like judging.
It's about believing the Scriptures are God-inspired, that they are truly useful
for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness,
using this sharp two-edged sword carefully and in love, for the building up of the body of Christ.
Untangling the Popular Opinions TranslationSo it's not avoiding like the plague & clobbering, but gently confronting, remembering my own propensity to missing the mark.
Context is maybe not everything, but still carries much of the meaning. Observe.& practice.
*One thing i've learned in the OT is that the right man is not necessarily God's man, and God's man is not necessarily the right man.