On Taking the Bible Literally

According to a 2011 Gallup survey, 3 in 10 Americans “interpret the Bible literally, saying it is the actual word of God,” while 49% say “the Bible is the inspired word of God but [shouldn’t] be taken literally.”

That’s commonly how the survey is quoted. But if you go to the survey results themselves, a specific and important statement begins the piece: A plurality view Bible as inspired word of God but say not everything in it should be taken literally.”

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Renovating My Heart with God, a Friend, and Dallas Willard

Despising self-help books, I am always skeptical of any non-fiction book advertised to guide me into helping myself make myself feel better, live better, do anything better for my mental and emotional health. Most of them out there are written by jack wagons. Ironically, it is the fixation on the self itself that make such a genre as “self help” complete malarkey.
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He Brews: The Coffee Christianity Obsession

 

bible coffeeI wish I had a free cup of coffee for every time I saw a picture of someone with a Bible and a cup of coffee.

It has now become a staple of Bible study in America, reaching beyond just millennials, white girls, hipsters, preachers, or even the middle and upper class. Sometimes it seems that everybody except the Mormons is taking their daily coffee with their daily (or at least periodical) Bible reading. If you notice the images in blogs, websites, and posts. Can you drink of the same cup I drink of? Apparently, we all are.
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Jesus and the EyeWitnesses: Study with a Skeptic, Part 3—Papias

Papias, Papias, and more Papias (continuing from our previous study)

Papias was a bishop of Hierapolis, a 3rd generation Christian who compiled oral reports of the life of Jesus. In his book, Bauckham spends a great deal of time on Papias, who naturally assumed that the elders he received his reports from had spoken with the disciples of Jesus directly.
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Jesus and the EyeWitnesses: A Study with a Skeptic, Part 2—History, Jesus, and The Holocaust

What is the difference between what the Bible says about Jesus (testimony carried on), and what history can tell us (history outside of the Bible)? It is claimed that when true scholars subject the Gospels to objective scrutiny, much doubt is cast on their storytelling. It seems legit that we believe what we see in the Bible not because it said so, but because “the historian has independently verified it.” To an extent, this is understandable, but when we refuse to treat the Gospels as historical documents themselves, we rob them of their legitimacy as witness reporting. In our study with our skeptic friend, we began to talk about why the Bible is mistrusted as a source of history.

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Jesus and the EyeWitnesses: A Study with a Skeptic Friend Begins

Jesus and the EyeWitnesses: A Study with a Skeptic Friend
Part 1—The Study Begins

This past year I had the chance to do a long study with a who has lost their faith, but was willing to study. They had let many doubts pile up over the years, and chief among those doubts was in the reliability of scripture.
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Book Review: A Farewell to Mars

Brian Zahnd remembers when he, a pastor, threw a huge party for the beginning of the Gulf War—when he, a Christian leader, celebrated the invasion of a country and the use of the sword. Since, he has repented. He even says it was the worst sin he ever committed. A Farewell to Mars is part confession, part instruction, a book about why he left the effective worship of war and chose to worship only God alone.
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