Moise, from Burkina Faso came and preached at our church yesterday.
He made crystal clear point about taking God at his word when it comes to reading the Bible: About not using interpretation as a means to twist the bible to our liking. The Bible is not only a historical document but is always relevant.
Moise’s point felt relevant to me when I heard it not just because I’d just finished my apology post but because in some circles I’m characterised as the one who’ll cart out some Hebrew. When Moise spoke he mentioned going back to Greek and Hebrew as a means of finding a way that we could pretend that God had not said what he appears to have said in our translations.
I don’t think Moise was talking against contextual study of the bible – after all he describes the context of the early church to illustrate his point. Moise went to Bible college and is well trained in all that kind of stuff himself. But he used it as a prime example of how churches can create readings that our lead by agendas and our denial of our own sin. For me Moise raised some questions: What is it to probe into a text? What is my motivation if I seek to understand a text? I need to be sure that my motivations are pure and in pursuit of God- not some attempt at self validation. What benefit is an in depth reading if it is not communicable to the world? — i.e. if some fascinating and deep interpretation is not in service of the gospel, if it confuses the gospel, then just what use is it?
You can hear Moise’s preach here.