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What is the Bible?

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by The Voice of Reason, Oct 10, 2004.

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  1. It is the direct word of God - and you will go to Hell for even asking this question!

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. It is the direct word of God

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. It is the inspired word of God

    12 vote(s)
    22.6%
  4. It is based on the word of God, with input from men through the ages

    7 vote(s)
    13.2%
  5. A collection of writings of men through history

    13 vote(s)
    24.5%
  6. An attempt by men of ages past, trying to influence society (like many other religious texts)

    21 vote(s)
    39.6%
  1. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason Doctor of Thinkology

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    What do you believe the Bible is?

    For me, it is a book written by men, that had various goals in mind at the time that each wrote his particular piece. For example, some wrote with the intention of documenting historically what was happening around them,some wrote to set forth what they thought their societal morals should be, who (or what) God is and what powers he has, etc.

    It is a book with some good morals, some questionable ideas, and some reprehensible views on what can be right (regardless of the time frame they were written in).

    All in all, for me, the Bible (like every other book that purports to know about and speak for God) is vastly overrated, and it is definitely the most intentionally misinterpreted book ever written.

    TVOR
     
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  2. Green Gaia

    Green Gaia Veteran Member

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    I voted: "A collection of writings of men through history" I think that says it all.
     
  3. jewscout

    jewscout Religious Zionist

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    I said it was inspired by G-d, though the answer i would have given is not listed.

    The Torah was dictated to Moses by G-d, however, it has been translated so many times we must be cautious as to how we use the words. People have been studying the words of the bible for generations and i believe we still have yet to come to a decision.

    It's always up for interpretation.
     
  4. huajiro

    huajiro Well-Known Member

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    I think it started out as an attempt to stress good morals, and as it became somewhat popular, was used by the Government and Church (there wasn't much separation between them before) to control the people. Then, over time, different areas (or people) distorted what they could (through translation) to fit their personal needs and if they couldn't, created their own denomination of Christianity.
     
  5. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    Different strokes from different folks.
     
  6. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason Doctor of Thinkology

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    Deut -

    I'm curious how you see the Bible. I have great respect for your encyclopedic knowledge of it. Obviously, you didn't dedicate so much of your life dissecting a book that you think to be hollow. How do you see it?

    TVOR
     
  7. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    First of all, you greatly over-estimate my knowledge.

    Frankly, I view the New Testament as mostly neurotic (and anti-Judaic) drivel. It has historical import but, beyond that, little more.

    The Tanach, however, is a fascinating tapestry of myth, folklore, propaganda, law, ethics and poetry. It is also much like a core sample of a remarkable Syro-Palestinian culture, with each strata telling its story to all who choose to read with lenses clear of dogma. Finally, it is the codification of the Exodus/Conquest narrative - the brilliant foundation for a new ethos and ethic - which give us, for example, Leviticus 19:32-37.

    So, when looking at the current genocide in Darfur, we are cautioned not only to love our neighbor as ourself, but to also acknowledge a central and abiding kinship with the victims, as if we too were oppressed in the land of Egypt. In fact, there are two different possible readings of Leviticus 19:18
    1. love thy neighbor as thyself, and
    2. love thy neighbor - s/he is like you
    It's quite a book.
     
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  8. The Voice of Reason

    The Voice of Reason Doctor of Thinkology

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    Deut -
    I was sitting here trying to think about how many books I have read in my lifetime. Like most of the more prolific posters on this site, I have a voracious appetite for books. As soon as I finish this post, I'm going to start a thread about that very subject.
    I do know this - you have demonstrated on this site, a depth of knowledge about the Bible that is hard to rival.
    I may overestimate your knowledge, but I doubt that it is possible to overestimate your grasp of what the Bible is or says. Beyond question, you do not take a backseat to anyone that I have seen post on this site so far. There are several others that have demonstrated a firm grasp of it as well, but for some reason, you stand out (even in this group) in my eyes.

    Thanks,
    TVOR

    PS - I'd like to see others answer this same question - from the die hard Atheists, to those strong in their Christian faith, to the Buddhists, etc.
     
  9. robtex

    robtex Veteran Member

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    a book that should be read once and than put aside to while one reads other philosphies or theories about life. I meet people every week (literally) who have read that book over 20 times..over and over and over....they finish it and start it again...some when you count passages much more.......and none of them read any other book on theory. blows me away. :bonk:
     
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  10. Master Vigil

    Master Vigil Well-Known Member

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    I do believe it is a wonderful book. My knowledge about it is supremely inferior to Deuts, and I doubt that will ever change. I do not discount its wonderous teachings and its beautiful mythology. But I do not see it as any more than that. Any who make the bible their sole read, and read nothing else seriously need help. They may know much about what the bible says, but that is never enough. It is like a child learning algebra for the first time. He studies and studies linear equations until he knows them through and through. But refuses to read anything else. Sure his knowledge of linear equations is immense, but his overall knowledge is severely lacking.
     
  11. linwood

    linwood Well-Known Member

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    I`m with Deut on the NT however I think its historical importance is in "reading between the lines " so to speak .
    The content itself is more than a bit dubious as far as history goes but when you consider who was writing it, where they were at that particular time, and what was happening in the environment around them you can begin to understand why it takes the tone it does.

    I do believe the OT is a fantastic tale that reaches the extremes of beauty and sorrow for me .
    I disparage the fact that it is so often used as an ethical guide in this day and age.
     
  12. Scott1

    Scott1 Well-Known Member

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    Good thread TVOR.... as usual! :)



    134 All Sacred Scripture is but one book, and this one book is Christ, "because all divine Scripture speaks of Christ, and all divine Scripture is fulfilled in Christ" (Hugh of St. Victor, De arca Noe 2,8:pL 176,642: cf. ibid. 2,9:pL 176,642-643).

    135 "The Sacred Scriptures contain the Word of God and, because they are inspired, they are truly the Word of God" (DV 24).

    136 God is the author of Sacred Scripture because he inspired its human authors; he acts in them and by means of them. He thus gives assurance that their writings teach without error his saving truth (cf. DV 11).

    137 Interpretation of the inspired Scripture must be attentive above all to what God wants to reveal through the sacred authors for our salvation. What comes from the Spirit is not fully "understood except by the Spirit's action' (cf. Origen, Hom. in Ex. 4, 5: PG 12, 320).

    141 "The Church has always venerated the divine Scriptures as she venerated the Body of the Lord" (DV 21): both nourish and govern the whole Christian life. "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path" (Ps 119:105; cf. Is 50:4).

    That about sums it up for us.
    Scott

    Oh yeah:
    I almost fell over laughing.... what a gift you have for cutting right to the quick... love reading your posts Deut... frubals for this one.
     
  13. Ellie_A

    Ellie_A Member

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    I see the Bible as combination of chicken soup for the soul and the local health department’s flyer on how to live safely at the time. In both cases educational. The beauty of it is that as with any great writing it is timeless. As they say, “Don’t believe everything you read.” It is up to us as individuals to find truth wherever it maybe, and sift out the rubbish. Oh, I do babble, sorry.

     
  14. croak

    croak Trickster

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    I put It is based on the word of God, with input from men through the ages because it originally came from God. However,it would be better if there was a choice saying Came originally from God, but has been altered a lot. That's how I think of it.
     
  15. David

    David Member

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    My feelings on this matter are in a state of transition as is my entire spectrum of faith. I accept the bible as a vehicle for revealing the Grace of God in Christ and nothing more. I do not view it inspired in the commonly held sense that it is literally the 'will' of God. I think of it as a springboard from which to take a leap of faith. The only purpose of the bible itself is that it should in some way facilitate a relationship with God. And that this relationship is based on the knowledge of Jesus.

    I'm going to paraphrase something here. Allan Watts, a theologian, wrote a book called "The Book: The taboo against knowing who you are." In this book he envisions himsewlf slipping to his son a book of information that he will need for life. This book is not intended to be read constantly. It is to be read and then done with. Returned too occassionally if necessary, but not a main diet. The purpose of the book is to loft the reader into another plane. Where he will not have to return to the book, but may live freely instead.

    I view the bible in much that way. The knowledge of Christ abides in my heart and informs me of my obligations to my fellow man. Every human relationship becomes sacralized in this way. Through this fluid expression of consciousness the interaction between God and man takes place.

    That would be the purpose of the bible as far as I'm concerned.
     
  16. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    The Bible is a work of propaganda. A handful of ancient works compiled into a synopsis reflective of the religio-political views of a small group of religious extremists.

    There are +/- 5,000 New testament scriptures alone and a myriad of older works that have not, so far, been published.

    You cannot get a clear picture of biblical period politics and thought with reference only to the Christian Holy Bible.
     
  17. Jayhawker Soule

    Jayhawker Soule <yawn> ignore </yawn>
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    To talk about the Bible and the Christian Holy Bible without distinguishing between old and new testament is sloppy at best. To suggest that the Torah was the product of religious extremists is more than a little silly. What were the "religio-political views" of the non-extremists of the area?
     
  18. David

    David Member

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    The bible is as inspired as any thing might be that provokes you into a different or higher realm.
     
  19. Dadball

    Dadball Member

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    I believe the Bible, I prefer the NIV, is the inspired word of God. I have studied the book as amateur historian non believer and later as a believer. I don't read the book as literally as others, however in the context of God's will of having a relationship with him and each other it is detailed throughout the OT and the NT. It's a book of love. This maybe too simplistic, and I'll acknowledge the fact there are some complexities that I may not understand. With out the message of love, this is a history book and a self help book tied together by a hallucinogenic vision at the end.
     
  20. blood-lord14

    blood-lord14 Member

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    how can humanity not blame himself for the belief of the "first" mans mistake...it's such a cruel world.
     
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