1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Featured Without the Holy Spirit...

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Nakosis, Jan 11, 2022.

  1. Nakosis

    Nakosis Time Efficient Lollygagger
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2011
    Messages:
    19,969
    Ratings:
    +10,072
    Religion:
    Scientism
    Can one interpret the Bible?

    Some claim the Bible interprets itself, which I disagree with.
    I interpret the Bible. Usually taking the plainest most mundane meaning. However I can't guarantee this mundane simple meaning to have been the intent of the original author.

    Still I have heard from many, making many claims about the true meaning of scripture. I've given up trying to reconcile the numerous claims made by those claiming via some unknown authority, their interpretation.

    Should non-believers simply pack up their bags and move to some other topic when it comes to understanding the Bible, or can anyone read the Bible using common language skills and understand it.
     
    • Useful Useful x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Seeker of White Light

    Seeker of White Light Think before you speak....so stay silent.

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2018
    Messages:
    22,345
    Ratings:
    +17,501
    Religion:
    Sufism
    I can't speak for the intepretation of the bible alone, but in general if we look at all religious texts, each person who study and following/practice the teaching will have a certain level of understanding or wisdom of what the teaching means.
    But no human are at the same exact level, so you will always find variations when people speak of the "true meaning" of spiritual teaching.
    Each person just don't understand it exactly the same, and by that cant give just one answer to a question.

    An other thing is :how was the question asked? There are variations in how to ask the same question too.

    Many factors to take in to the answer.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2014
    Messages:
    65,760
    Ratings:
    +32,512
    Religion:
    Love
    The Bible is tricky since there's a lot of mythology some which appears to be based on history and some borrowing from earlier myths such as the flood myth. If one avoids literalist traps and looks at some of the stories as designed to teach certain principles, then asking what psychological or sociological principles might be the heart of some of the stories can be fruitful.

    And it depends if you want to focus on the NT or also include the OT. To me, the NT takes some things from the OT, specifically the primacy of love, and puts them "front and center" with the Sermon on the Mount, statement of the two greatest commandments and 1 Corinthians 13.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  4. AlexanderG

    AlexanderG Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2021
    Messages:
    564
    Ratings:
    +1,154
    Religion:
    Atheist
    I don't think it's a problem that there can be many different interpretations of the Bible, with or without a holy spirit.

    The big problem is that after thousands of years, no one has identified any reliable means to tell which interpretation is likely more accurate than any other, or whether the holy spirit moved through one person and not the other, when two people with different interpretations claim that it did. Science definitively has such a means to differentiate feelings from objective reality; that's essentially what the scientific method is. However, religious beliefs, interpretations, and practices seem to be little more than a Rorschach test for an individual's personality traits and preferences.

    When religious people move to a new location in the US, they go shopping for a new church in their area that is a "good fit." This is far more common than people fitting their own personalities to a set interpretation. Granted, it happens some with childhood indoctrination, but about 75% of conservative youths are now leaving their faith. There are more ex-Catholics in the US than Catholics, last I read. It really seems like personality and taste is the determinant of the scriptural interpretation someone choses. If nothing else, this leaves me with a lot of admiration and respect for Christians who are truly loving, generous, and non-judgmental.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  5. Hermit Philosopher

    Hermit Philosopher Selflessly here for you

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    Messages:
    830
    Ratings:
    +713

    If we believe that God is good and we say “yes” to the question above, we run into a problem because plenty of people and groups of people do plenty of very un-good things, claiming the Bible as their source for doing so.

    My answer - however unpopular - is therefore “no”. It is not meaningful to read the Bible unless it is read in a “spiritual frame of mind”.

    Some achieve this mindset on their own, but the “noise” of worldliness means that many with busy lives, want rather to turn to guidance for interpretation and that is okay too - there are plenty who dedicate their lives to Scripture and are there to assist.


    Humbly
    Hermit
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Nakosis

    Nakosis Time Efficient Lollygagger
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2011
    Messages:
    19,969
    Ratings:
    +10,072
    Religion:
    Scientism
    In some cases, one's understanding of the Bible leads to destructive behavior.
    Do you think this is also intended by God?
     
  7. Seeker of White Light

    Seeker of White Light Think before you speak....so stay silent.

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2018
    Messages:
    22,345
    Ratings:
    +17,501
    Religion:
    Sufism
    No, that I do not think.
    Same as when followers of other scriptures doing evil deeds in the name of the God they believe in, that is not from God
    But from those humans who do the evil action due to ego.

    ( this is of course just how I understand it)
     
  8. Nakosis

    Nakosis Time Efficient Lollygagger
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2011
    Messages:
    19,969
    Ratings:
    +10,072
    Religion:
    Scientism
    So for someone like me, who has no spiritual frame of mind since I approach things with a materialistic frame of mind, best to walk away?
     
  9. Seeker of White Light

    Seeker of White Light Think before you speak....so stay silent.

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2018
    Messages:
    22,345
    Ratings:
    +17,501
    Religion:
    Sufism
    Please do not walk away, you are an interesting person :)
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  10. Nakosis

    Nakosis Time Efficient Lollygagger
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2011
    Messages:
    19,969
    Ratings:
    +10,072
    Religion:
    Scientism
    So like a useful narrative for personal growth?

    I'd suppose then one should not criticize a personal interpretation one benefit from.
     
  11. Hermit Philosopher

    Hermit Philosopher Selflessly here for you

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    Messages:
    830
    Ratings:
    +713

    I think so my friend. It will only seem like a load of mumble jumble from that outlook.
    If I were you, I’d spend my time doing something else than reading scripture for the time being.

    But should that time you spend elsewhere, one day to you, seem lacking in depth and meaning, or should it fill you with unbearable distress and hardship; then, there are baby-steps one can take into different, more spiritual ways of seeing and living.
    To many, it offers much.


    Humbly
    Hermit
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  12. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Messages:
    20,333
    Ratings:
    +10,437
    Religion:
    None
    For from it. A atheist is in the best position to understand it
     
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
  13. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue Twilight, not bright nor dark, good nor bad.

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    40,180
    Ratings:
    +17,513
    Religion:
    Philosophical Buddhism
    It's just a collection of books made by humans.

    People interpret it as they will. Each meaning to one's own.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  14. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2017
    Messages:
    4,931
    Ratings:
    +1,426
    Religion:
    Itiswhatitis
    No you can't correctly understand or interpret the Bible without the holy Spirit.

    Remember that even in the Bible itself God would give a dream that no one could interpret until God gave the interpretation usually to one of his "prophets". Like Joseph or Daniel.

    So why do people think the Bible is any different? If God gave it then only God can interpret it.
     
  15. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Messages:
    20,333
    Ratings:
    +10,437
    Religion:
    None
    That clearly explains why there's as many
    different interpretations as there are people who get this spiritual help.
     
  16. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2017
    Messages:
    4,931
    Ratings:
    +1,426
    Religion:
    Itiswhatitis
    Yes only God can interpret. The rest are blind leaders of the blind.
     
  17. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Messages:
    20,333
    Ratings:
    +10,437
    Religion:
    None
    That is not remotely what i said

    But i don't doubt that every person getting
    this spiritual help will think they got it right.
     
  18. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2017
    Messages:
    4,931
    Ratings:
    +1,426
    Religion:
    Itiswhatitis
    Of course they do. But that changes nothing. Many are called but few are chosen.
     
  19. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Messages:
    20,333
    Ratings:
    +10,437
    Religion:
    None
    You being of course one of the few.
    As they all say.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  20. Nimos

    Nimos Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2014
    Messages:
    3,560
    Ratings:
    +2,298
    Completely agree, the bible doesn't interpret itself, if it did there are a whole lot of biblical scholars etc. that is going to be out of a job :) Besides that the bible is not a like a math book, that will only give you one correct answer if you do it right. 2+2 = 4 which is not up for interpretation, that is not the case for a lot of the bible and when you try to figure out what they actually believed and not.

    Secondly I think if one want to even get remotely close to understanding the bible, one have to look at it as a collection of books and writings, each with varies topics and meanings, and not as if it was written as one book that were meant to be read from start to finish as an ordinary book. The bible were put together based on what some people could agree on should be in it, some books/texts were left out (a quick google, say that this is supposedly 75 books) due to different things and there is currently 66 books in the bible.

    Anyone can read the bible and interpret it as they want, again there doesn't seem to be any authority on what is correct and what is not, as long as one doesn't go completely overboard, like saying that Jesus is actually Satan etc. or unless you feel like priests, the pope etc. knows more about whether or not God is real, than you do.

    I have asked questions to people with master degrees in both the old and new testament about the story of Adam and Eve for instance, and some of the replies have been shocking to say the least, like the story were basically added there because they needed a beginning and all the stuff with the snake etc. was just to make it more exciting or because the story would otherwise have been to short. All of which I disagree with as explanations, but am I right about that or are the person that made those comments? Obviously we will never know for certain, but I do not consider such person, regardless of number of degrees, to be an authority on the bible.

    Also a lot of the bible is written pretty directly, either as stories or as commandments/laws and is not really possible to misunderstand in my opinion, the issues start when people apply or try to explain away some of these things and the contradictions etc. But this is were the debate gets interesting in my opinion :)
     
    #20 Nimos, Jan 11, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2022
    • Informative Informative x 1
Loading...