Recently the Pope visited the UK.
It was a mixed kind of event.
The biggest challenge seemed to be the Catholic Church’s involvement in child abuse over the years.
In addition to expressing sorrow over this … the Pope expressed concern that religious views … especially Christian views … maybe especially Catholic views … and people … are being marginalised and their views and values are not being taken into account sufficiently.
But I can see why the un-churched might not see a problem in this. Looking around the world, religion has a very mixed history.
It isn’t all bad … but bad enough to mean that almost anyone involved in any mainstream religion ought to be prepared to apologise for past misdeeds before suggesting agendas for the present and the future. And some way of making sure that it doesn’t happen again.
I guess the same goes for political parties and a lot of non-religious groups as well.
Cardinal Walter Kasper hit the news in the UK just before the Papal Visit … though what he actually said in the context in which he meant it to be heard is something that the media seemed to lose track of.
For a little while I gave some thought to the Church’s role in past misdemeanours.
I typed the following search into the little box displayed at www.google.co.uk
is the catholic church evil
The second result in the list that came back tells me that God Hates the Catholic Church!
The thing I find difficult to understand is that the person that wrote this stuff expected to be taken seriously.
Even harder to understand is that some people agree.
And even harder … how can someone write all that stuff and then … at the very top of the page in bright red letters make the following quote:
"The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate." -Proverb 8:13
My mind is boggling.
I then took a look at the home page: http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/
Oh my gosh!
Which led me to: http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/Bible/NIV/why.htm where Mr Stuart tells me:
If you are using the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible, and continue to do so after reading this article, then you are truly blinded by Satan, or just don't care.
At this point Andrea breathes a sigh of relief … no NIV for me.
There’s a part of me that thinks – so what? What if David J. Stewart thinks this?
And another part of me thinks – David J. Stewart should not go unchallenged.
So … here goes … in my opinion … David J. Stewart is a misguided man who misunderstands the book which he proclaims to be divinely inspired and infallible. He’s lost touch with the God that is described in the New Testament. He has made the book that He reads into his God.
I guess that he might see me as an abomination … under the influence of Satan. The only way I know to disagree with that it to discuss things rationally and reasonably. But maybe I’m on a loser when disagreeing with the infallible.
The letter that Paul wrote to the Galatians says:
... the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance …
Or in the 1611 version:
… the fruit of the spirit is loue, ioy, peace, long suffering, gentlenesse, goodnesse, faith, meekenesse, temperance …
It would be nice to see a little of this at http://www.jesus-is-savior.com. But I’m not holding my breath.
Having spent a little while reading some of this stuff I wondered if there were other people that had similar views on the King James 1611 version of the Bible.
And Google led me here: King James Bible Believers
Mostly it saddens me. It seems that people are willing to buy into infallibility at the cost of their reason.
I left a message in the guest book:
http://kjv1611.org.uk/hivyersay/index.php dated 21 September 2010:
I'm convinced that you are mistaken ... but have the feeling that no amount of discussion will change your mind.
Infallibility - real or imagined - is a difficult thing to enter into a discussion with.
You signed our guest book saying we are mistaken. What may we ask 'are we mistaken about'? What article are you referring to?
It begins with the infallibility of KJV 1611 thing. And the way that “reason” seems to be belittled and scorned whenever it seems to conflict with the infallible.
But it doesn’t end there. I read parts of the article at: http://kjv1611.org.uk/What%20Happens%20to%20Babies%20and%20the%20Retarded%20at%20Death.htm. There was a time when I might have thought the same. But really … to follow this logic to its extreme … wouldn’t it be better if most of humanity had never grown beyond babyhood?
The page that I first visited at this site was: http://kjv1611.org.uk/Questions%20for%20those%20who%20think%20the%20KJV%20Only%20are%20wrong!.htm
Here are the questions from the web site … and my thoughts in italics:
Let me ask you to answer the following questions about my position:
1. How many people am I leading to Hell because I believe the AV1611 is infallible?
If there is no hell … then no one.
If there is a hell … then perhaps there is just one person that turned away from Christ because they found it hard to see how anyone could make such a big thing out of this.
And if there is one … perhaps there is another.
2. How many young Christians will grow up with a stunted knowledge of the Bible, if I teach them to read it with the belief it is infallible and the very words of God?
To read it in the belief that this one translation is infallible requires a leap of faith that, I believe, discredits the word faith. How can it be infallible? It’s a translation. Really? How can it? And what happens when they discover the truth?
3. What is wrong with holding up the AV1611 and telling Bible-believing Christians, "You can trust every word"?
There are mistakes in the translation. Really. There are.
4. How much of my reward will I lose for trusting God to keep his "WORDS" to every generation?
Which generation? Which language? Where? When? You mean God promised somewhere that there would be a 100% accurate, unequivocal and unambiguous translation of the Bible in English? For ever? Always?
5. If I am not allowed to believe the AV1611 is infallible, then which version should hold that distinction?
You may believe what you will … but really … honestly … there isn’t one.
6. If no version can hold that distinction, what do you suggest I tell my grand-children the next time they read Psalm 12:6-7?
This would be a start: http://kjvonlydebate.com/2010/03/17/psalm-126-7-preservation/
7. If I am forced to learn Hebrew and Greek before I can study the "words" of God, will you pay for our lessons?
I didn’t mention Hebrew nor Greek. And you do know … they aren’t infallible either. Honestly.
8. Please tell me why you still "preach from" the AV1611 but do not believe it is infallible?
Actually I don’t.
9. Which Bible do you use in your private studies and which one is the "best translation"?
None. But if I did … and when I did … looking at different translations added meaning and aided understanding … tended to avoid bigotry. It wasn’t ever about the best translation. It was about understanding and doing.
10. Why can't you just leave us "ignorant brethren" alone with our belief in the infallibility of the Scriptures and let us retain the title "Bible-believers", while you could use the title "Bible-correctors and interpreters"?
Mainly, I think, because you make such an issue of the truth and base the premise of your truth upon what seems to be an untruth. Also … if you cannot leave other people alone, you can expect others to not leave you alone.
So … there you go.
Of course … I am definitely not infallible.
Well … unless I am having a discussion with Sally, Sarah or Katie … in which case everyone knows I am always right. The clue is almost in my name :)
I’ve left the following message in the guestbook dated 27 September 2010:
Thank you for replying to my earlier comment of September 21st.
I believe that you are misguided over the issue of the infallibility of the KVJ1611 version - but also about other things as well.
I've written in a little more length in my blog at: http://andrea-wright.blogspot.com/2010/09/popes-cardinals-catholicism-evil-and.html
I do though, respect your right to your beliefs and also respect that you are prepared to allow people to leave messages on your guest book even where the message is in disagreement with you.