Post # 1
If you are Christian, does your denomination take the bible litterally? And secondly, do you personally take the bible litterally?
I was raised Catholic. In that faith I was (mainly) taught to take the bible litterally. However, in my Catholic perish I found that reading the bible wasn’t actively encouraged and most people didn’t have comprehensive knowledge.
Post # 2
Yes, I take the Bible literally. Why shouldn’t anyone? I’m a non-denominational Christian. My father grew up Catholic, and I know that in Catholicism there is some kind of companion book that they use that they get rules and direction out of. It’s the same way in Mormonism. However, I believe that the Bible has everything in it that I need to know and should know. I believe that it is the definitive word of God and as such, I would never follow any other book.
Post # 3
I’m not religious so I can’t comment on my own situation, but I want to recommend this great book I read, The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs. He’s a great author and tried to live as close to the bible as possible for a year, while living in NYC. Here’s a TED talk about it: https://www.ted.com/talks/a_j_jacobs_year_of_living_biblically
Post # 4
- Wedding: December 2014 - 13th ~ TN
cbgg: I am Baptist and yes we do. However, we believe that you live under the laws of the New Testament. While the Old Testamanet is to be taken seriously, the New Testament is what is to be followed.
Post # 5
cbgg: Some things are to be taken literally and some things are metaphorical. When Christ taught about cutting off your hand or plucking out your eye, he was talking about removing things in your life that cause you to sin, not actually maiming yourself. I also believe that the beginning of Genesis is a metaphor for what we know as evolution(although I am not entirely sold on people being included in that…we are too unique to creation, and its kind of an insult to monkeys).
I believe that things like forgiveness and showing your faith by love are meant to be very literal. I also believe that everything Christ and Paul taught about divorce are also meant to be literal as well. Oddly enough, even the most conservative, fundamental churches seem to side step everything that was taught on that subject.
Post # 6
I’m ELCA Lutheran (the liberal kind) and we do not take the Bible literally. I, personally, don’t take the Bible literally and also utilize other religious texts and practices.
Okay, I’ve thought about this and I’m not sure how to make this soudn non snarky, so I’m just going to say this is a genuine question, not trying to be snarky. I’ve always wondered about people who take the Bible literally – do they not eat pork or shellfish or wear clothes with mixed fabrics? Do they believe in slavery and that women should be treated as property? Do they think we should put to death those that choose to work on the Sabbath?
Or is there some reason to disregard those parts of the Bible?
Post # 7
No and no.
The Bible is a collection of stories handed down over the centuries as best as the writers could recall. It contains guiding principles not laws.
Post # 8
I was raised Catholic, and I was taught not to take certain parts of the bible literally. During Confirmation classes, we even talked about Evolution! I’m not sure what PP is talking about when she speaks of a companion book to the bible with rules and directions, but whatever.
Post # 9
cbgg: Yes and Yes. I believe the Bible to be the very words of God, written by men, inspired by God, infallible in all that it teaches, sufficient for all of life and doctrine. As PP mentioned some are metaphors and some are literal descriptions but their validity isn’t changed by this fact.
JenGirl: I appreciate that you aren’t trying to sound snarky and I’m going to try to answer your question. This question is so strange to me from Christians, because nearly every branch of Christianity (including Lutheran) agrees that Jesus’ coming made the old sacrifical (moral) system and ceremonial (custom) laws obsolete. These Mosaic laws (which is what everything you mentioned falls under) were given specifically to the nation of Israel at that specific time, to set them apart from other nations as the chosen people of God, to reveal the sinfulness of man and to provide a system of forgiveness through sacrifice. These things are not abandoned or ignored- they are wonderfully fulfilled in Christ. This fact is highlighted throughout the new testament- Galatians and Hebrews are entirely focused on this topic and there are many other scriptures that address this in no uncertain terms- which is probably why it is an area that most denominations agree on (some examples: Rom. 6:14, 7:1-14, 2 Cor. 3:7-18)
One thing that brings me great sadness about the attitude of “oh well you believe the Bible literally but what about all of this” is that it gives an illusion of clarity that isn’t based on actual understanding of scripture. This idea claims that those who believe the Bible are “picking and choosing” when the very idea chooses to ignore so much of the gift that Christ gave us through His sacrifice- the the reconciliation with God and adoption as joint heirs with Christ, that makes those laws obsolete to begin with!
And also, as a theology point- there are things in the Bible that are prescriptive (guidelines for life) and things that are descriptive (narrative accounts of actual events that occured). Narrative accounts of things like rape, concubines, adultery, brutal sins against women and others– are written with accuracy. This doesn’t mean that God endorsed them. These things show the sinfulness of man and how desperately we need Him. This culminates in showing the amazing lengths He went to in Christ to save us.
Post # 10
I completely agree with dulcevida!
Post # 11
cbgg: It depends what you mean by “literally”. Some parts of the Bible are metaphors (as one PP has said) and not meant to be taken literally.
If you mean not “literally” but as “infallible in all it teaches” (as explained by dulcevida: ), then my church does but I do not. I used to regard it as infallible, but eventually I decided that some errors (and terrible things) could not be explained away.
Post # 12
chaibella: “I’m not sure what PP is talking about when she speaks of a companion book to the bible with rules and directions, but whatever.” Read more:
Agreed, I have no idea what you mean, weepingbride2b:, about the second book that catholics use. Do you maybe just mean the books that’s used to follow along in mass (forget what it’s called)? That doesn’t have new rules, just helps people follow along. I may be missing something as I have never been Catholic as an adult, but I come from a pretty Catholic family and have never heard of this. Also, Catholic is sort of the origional main form of Christianity (well, within the western church)…so why would they have an extra book that no one has heard of?
Post # 13
dulcevida: “These Mosaic laws (which is what everything you mentioned falls under) were given specifically to the nation of Israel at that specific time, to set them apart from other nations as the chosen people of God, to reveal the sinfulness of man and to provide a system of forgiveness through sacrifice. These things are not abandoned or ignored- they are wonderfully fulfilled in Christ.”
Ditto to this. Just to share some of my own experience, I was raised Catholid and did the whole Sunday school thing, yet I reached the age of confirmation (it’s only 12 years old, but it’s when Catholics basically think of you as an adult and you are spiritually equipped to make your own choice to follow the faith) and I was NOT AT ALL clear on this. It wasn’t until the last few years when I’ve been indipendently studying more about world religions that I came to understand this!
Post # 14
aussiemum1248: I am probably not a biblical scholar enough to answer this question well, but I mean literally for things such as many people in the old testament living to be several hundred years old, the flood wiping out all of human population, the earth being created in 7 days in the way that we understand days today, etc. (Can you tell I’ve hardly made it past Genesis?)
For example I remember once suggesting that maybe the 7 days weren’t human days but super long God days and my counselor (I was at bible camp) was like, no they were normal days. Stuff like that really influenced me to turn away from my religion because (sorry, this will be offensive to some) it is utterly rediculous.
Lately I’ve been learning that there are some religious groups that take this stuff less dogmatically and I’d be interested to know which ones they are and maybe consider my options.
Post # 15
cbgg: I didn’t know what it was called either, so I looked it up. Catholics have a different version of the Bible. It has more books in it. So, it’s not a companion book I’m thinking of, but rather a different Bible. I don’t understand the reasoning behind most of the doctrine. For instance, the Bible informs us that we can confess our sins directly to God. In Catholism, however, a person is told to confess his sins to man. And I don’t undertand why one would need to pray to the mother of Jesus. I’m not knocking anyone’s relgion, I just don’t believe don’t agree with the Catholic doctrine.
I also want to comment on your confusion about the “7 normal days”. If you look at it from the standpoint of there being a supreme, all-powerful being who can create a human life, accomplishing anything in 7 days is plausible.