Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Looking beyond the red letters to hear the Trinity talking. (A very short post)

A lot of people own “red letter” Bibles. These are editions where the words Jesus spoke as reported in the New Testament are printed in red.

That’s nice but misses an essential point about the Bible.

It’s often easy to determine who does and does not understand the Bible and the story it’s truly conveying.

Quoting verses out of context, misunderstanding the original intent of a passage, focusing only on the red letters, ignoring historically accepted interpretations, and so on.

For example, a common claim among those supporting same-sex marriage is to claim that Jesus never addressed it. There’s nothing on the topic in red letters.

Therefore, because they believe Jesus was silent on the topic, they wrongly assume either He didn’t care or it was no big deal.

Often,  in countering this false assessment, some put forth the idea that the issue of same-sex relationships had already been settled within the Jewish religious culture at the time, and therefore Jesus didn’t need to address it.

This is a sound argument and may be true, but it’s not the clincher.

We need to look beyond the red letters.

What many miss is this: Yes, indeed, Jesus did address the issue of same-sex relationships. And it’s recorded in the Bible, in the Old and the New Testaments.

Just not in red.

The whole Bible is God’s Word. It’s His revelation of Himself to us as well as guidance for how we are to live in His presence.

The Bible also affirms the reality of the Trinity, which is, to put it very simply, one God, three co-equal expressions: God, the Father; God, the Son; God, the Holy Spirit.

Or, to put it another way, when one speaks, they all are speaking, because they are one.

Within Christian orthodoxy it is acknowledged that the Old Testament clearly reveals the work of Christ as part of the Trinity before He was born as a person on earth. This is further affirmed in the New Testament.

Paul puts it like this:
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For everything was created by Him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and by Him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:15-17, HCSB).

From the beginning, the Three-in-One God was, is, and will be. Father. Son. Holy Spirit.

So, simply put, anywhere in God’s Word -- the Bible -- where there are clear mandates against same-sex relationships, it is as much Jesus speaking as it is God and the Holy Spirit speaking (see Genesis 1:27-31; 2:24; 19:1-13; Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9).

When reading your Bible, don’t just see red. See it all.

When you read the Bible, do you think in terms of hearing from Jesus and the Holy Spirit, or primarily just God? Why or why not? Are there other topics you are aware of where it’s claimed Jesus was silent about, yet are addressed elsewhere in Scripture? Give some examples. Do you agree or disagree that the Bible is the voice of the Trinity? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

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