Thursday, September 10, 2015

Teaching Kim Davis how to read the Bible

Huff Post has posted An Open Letter to Kim Davis by Jennifer G. Bird. Unlike some of the hate-filled manure slung at Davis, Bird approaches the topic with kindness, understanding and apology for intolerant reactions such as death threats, bullying and shaming. Rather, as an educator, she positions herself "to ask that [Kim Davis] take a few moments to think about the way [she reads] the Bible." 

I nevertheless found Bird's advice on how to read the Bible less than enlightening. The essay is not about hermeneutics, but about confusing the Bible's teachings on homosexuality. One reviewer of Bird's book Permission Granted (who is a new Christian) "started out liking the book" but progressing found that Bird put so much spin on it that the reviewer did not know what to believe. That is the danger of those who press the Bible into the service of their theories (and that can be any of us if we're not careful). Bird recommends herself highly based on her education and position as an educator. But she focuses on the Old Testament, and mentions not the New Testament. She abandons Jesus's interpretation of the Old Testament creation account. Bird says passages such as Genesis 1:28 and 2:24 are "not even talking about marriage." I say, "let Jesus determine." He says they are. For example: Matthew 19:4-6 And [Jesus] answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. 

I don't want to learn to read the Bible like Jennifer G. Bird!

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