Rob Bell

God

Jul 19, 2017 by Rik Bokelman

The Authority Of The Bible: Rob Bell Explains It In A Whole New Way

In his new book and New York Times bestseller 'What is the Bible', Rob Bell explains the authority of the Bible in a whole new way. Or how some might call it, controversial.

"When someone says they're just 'doing what the Bible says to do' they didn't greet you with a holy kiss," Bell writes. And there's a good chance they don't have tassels sewn on the corners of their garments, or wear two kinds of fabric sewn together, all things commanded in the Bible.

His point: the Bible has to be interpreted. And interpretation is something we humans do. 

"People have been influenced by someone who told them that is how the Bible is to be interpreted. Someone who they have given authority to. They have given that parent, teacher, pastor, priest, youth leader - whoever - authority over them. Weight, power, influence." 

"Authority is when you give weight, power, and influence to something."



Rob Bell tells how the roof on his house used to leak. He asked a company to repair it. When the mechanic came, he gave him authority and influence over his house, "because I want the roof to stop leaking."

In the same way, Christians can give the Bible authority over their lives. 

"But," he emphasizes, "following it, obeying it, submitting to it cannot be done without interpretation. And interpretation requires actual people to do the interpreting. Someone has to decide what the Bible says, what it means, and what that looks like in flesh and blood."

"This is why so many people are so confused when it comes to the Bible. They were taught by their pastor or parents or authority figures to submit to the authority of the Bible, but that's impossible to do without submitting first to whoever is deciding what the Bible is saying. And that requires trust. Because authority is a relational authority."

"The problem, of course, is that the folks who talk the most about the authority of the Bible also seem to talk the most about things like objective and absolute truth, truth that exists independent of relational realities." 


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