Friday, 8 October 2010

That's just your interpretation!

It's the line that is trotted out when a person runs out of arguments, "That's just your interpretation."  I find it quite frustrating for a few reasons...

It seems that people just want to hold on to their own ideas about how the whole issue of heaven and hell will work out and they try to merge these ideas into the Bible by claiming everything is open to interpretation, but the point is that Scripture can't be interpretated to mean anything, at least it can't honestly be interpreted to mean anything.  And the big point is this, the statements about salvation don't need to be interpreted, they mean exactly what they say!

This point was brought home to me sometime ago when I was working on a construction site.  I had a great conversation with one of the engineers on site, and he was telling me how he had always been taught at church that you had to work your way to heaven, and if you were good enough you got in.  I asked him how good you would have to be in order to satisfy an absolutely righteous, infinitely righteous God.  I then tried to explain to him that because of our sins we could never be good enough, so we need a Saviour - one to come to us in our helplessness and rescue us from our danger.  I told him that the Bible says, "By grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast" (Ephesians 2 v 8-9).  He immediately said, "But that's just your opinion!"  I told him it wasn't my opinion, it was a quotation from the Bible.  I didn't interpret it, I just quoted it, and I pointed out that he knew exactly what the verses meant, and he could also see that what his church taught wasn't matching up with it.

Could I urge you not to shrink away from the Bible's clear teaching about sin, salvation and the Saviour, by hiding behind this line, "That's just your interpretation"?  Scripture is crystal clear - we have sinned, we are in danger of perishing, Christ died for sinners and rose again, He can save you, and will save you if you trust Him to (Romans 3 v 23; 2 v 12; 1Corinthains 15 v 3-4; Romans 10 v 13-14).