Steve Wiggins addresses the fact that it seems everybody these days considers him or herself to be a Bible expert. (H/T: James McGrath) What this usually boils down to, however, is that everybody has opinions or beliefs about the Bible—whether they’ve actually read much (or any) of it or not. He illustrates this with reference to the use of (a highly expanded fictionalized version of) Ezekiel 25:17 in the film Pulp Fiction.
Politicians, rap artists, physicians, movie directors, and janitors are all experts on the Bible; why do we need those of us who’ve made it a life’s work? The answer, I believe, is that knowledge of the Bible is at an all-time low. Many venerate the Bible without understanding what it is. Until society gets a grasp on what it means to have so many experts on the Bible, everyone should ponder the meaning of the passage that reads…
For the record, Ezekiel 25:17 actually says,
I will execute great vengeance on them with wrathful punishments. Then they shall know that I am the LORD, when I lay my vengeance on them.
Here is a bipartisan legislative effort all Christians—indeed, all Americans—should be able to embrace. If you can afford to make a donation, I encourage you to do so. If you can’t, perhaps at least you can spread the word.
We’ll just celebrate it, as we always have, Mr. Warren’s advice notwithstanding.
As a character in the book my wife is reading says, “I think everyone should have [a library card]. Reading is fundamental, and if more fundamentalists read, there might be fewer of them.”
At least they’re not burning witches.
According to this post by James McGrath, Conservapedia (which I’d never heard of) is apparently scandalized by the fact that portions of the Bible are *gasp!* open to varying interpretations. Their response to to create a “booby-trapped” translation (to borrow a phrase from Bart Ehrman) that is impervious to the misconstruals of liberals.
Or, to put it another way, the plan is to replace what the text says, which is open to other interpretations than their own, with a rendering that will say what they think the text means and really ought to have said. These “translators”, if they are serious, are exalting themselves above the Bible and, from the perspective of conservative Christianity, above God. How that shores up a conservative understanding of the Bible is hard to fathom.
I sort of miss the days when people actually took the time to defend their beliefs. Just call me an old fuddy-duddy.