I don’t call myself a Christian. Sadly, that word has become an unhappy label in today’s America. Throughout history, men and women have used the title erroneously to excuse malicious behavior. Today, groups like the Westboro Baptist Church (and many other organizations and individuals) take portions of the Bible out of context and use it for their own purpose, and in so doing, they denigrate the name of Christ. Our minds are small but able to twist Biblical words to mean what we want them to mean for our purpose. This misuse of Scripture sanctions “religious” wars and “religious” bigotry perpetrated on one group or another. I cannot align myself with any who willingly misinterpret God and embrace hatred.
None of us know with a certainty the heart and mind of God. It is not possible. And, frankly, if it were possible, that god would be too small! I have heard many times people say the Bible is filled with inconsistencies. That is honestly not my experience, yet it explains the more than 100 different Protestant denominations now in existence. It is not the Bible that is the problem, but our “interpretation” of it that separates and divides us, and mutes the message of Christ.
In spite of all this, the agreement between Old and New Covenants amazes me. Compare the following passages, for an example of agreement:
- Isaiah 28:16
- Psalm 118:22
- Matthew 21:41-43
- Mark 12:9-11
- Luke 20:16-18
- Acts 4:10-12
- Ephesians 2:18-20
- 1 Peter 2:4-9
Each of these portions of the Bible shed a slightly different light on the meaning and identity of the “Cornerstone.” Does that mean they conflict? NO! It means, we all see in part! If we can put the pieces together, the image becomes much clearer, better defined and understood.
The various authors lived across several hundreds of years, in several different locations, yet, miraculously, their words build upon one another like pieces of the same puzzle come together to clarify the original image. Groups like this misguided congregation (WBC), don’t take the time or effort to research the Bible cover to cover. Instead, they mutilate it, and with it, the image of Christ. It saddens me deeply because the ultimate message of the Bible, cover to cover, word to word, author to author is simple. If only, if only we believers could live it, then the world would see who Jesus is in Truth. The bottom line?