Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Open to interpretation?

I had a conversation with a woman yesterday about the Gospel, and she said she hadn't really looked into the Bible for herself, but with so many denominations and opinions, what's the point?  Everyone thinks they're right, and they all disagree, so the whole thing is just a matter of interpretation.

I agreed with her that it does seem confusing, but she needed to know that the disagreements different denominations and churches have are not usually about how to get right with God.  The disagreements are usually about secondary issues.  However, there are some denominations that would deny that salvation is through faith alone in Christ alone, but it is because they have added other sources of authority to the Bible.  If you are confine yourself to Scripture you are left with a message that is clear, plain and often repeated - we are sinners who can't save ourselves, Christ is the only one who can save us, and if we trust Him to save us He will.

I told her there are areas that are very much open to interpretation, but the all-important matter of salvation is spelt out clearly: All have sinned (Romans 3 v 23); those who have sinned will perish (Romans 2 v 12); Christ died for our sins and rose again (1 Corinthians 15 v 3-4); believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you'll be saved (Acts 16 v 31).  These statements don't really need to be interpreted, they just need to be believed and acted on - they mean what they say!  We have sinned, our sins will take us to hell, Christ paid the penalty for sin on the cross, and if we trust Him to save us He will, and if we don't He won't.

Don't hide behind the excuse that the Bible is too hard to understand.  If you want to get right with God, read the Gospel of John, and ask God to open your eyes to see His truth and understand His message.