Is every word of the Bible the actual Word(s) of God? Are the Red Letter words of the Bible the actual words spoken by Christ Jesus? No, but everything written in the Bible is the voice of God. By voice, I acknowledge the personal uniqueness of our heavenly Fathers vocal voice. Isaiah 55:8 is an extremely necessary chapter and verse to keep in mind when working with Scripture. The Prophet Isaiah (the most quoted Hebrew prophet in the New Testament of our Holy Bible) wrote, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD.” My understanding of the infallibility of our Holy Bible is that it is a human product, though brought into being in response to our God. We must discern, as Disciples of Christ Jesus how to read, interpret, and how to hear and value, its various voices. Before continuing any farther, I will assert it is possible to know about God, without knowing God!
Time has revealed that the Red Letter wordspurpose is for the reader’s quick identification of the teachings of our LORD. This misconception of the purpose/use of the Red Lettertext is analogous to the confusion of verse numbers. Briefly, verse numbers came to be because a third column was needed to ensure accuracy when translating the Bible. The purpose of the verse numbers was to assist the translator in keeping his place while translating. However, the verse numbers started to be included in all translations. That compound error has, and still does, create unnecessary angst among novice Bible readers and ill-informed scholars.
Reading and “seeing” go hand in hand, so how we see things will shape in our minds what and how we read as well as how we comprehend the text. For true Disciples of Christ Jesus worldwide it appears the way many now “see”, may account for the decline in the relevance of studying our Holy Bible. Personally, I believe that once Christ is in you the Holy Spirit will guide you with regard to Scripture being taken literally or metaphorically. I reiterate — it is possible to know about God, without knowing God!Each individual must make decisions for himself — our heavenly Father blessed us with “personal choice.”Reflect for a moment: “Most folks are as happy as they make up their mind to be” (Abraham Lincoln). Personal choice is a blessing for many, but the promise of eternal death for others!
It is written in Proverbs 3:5-7, (5) “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. (6) In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (7) Be not wise in thine own eyes; fear the Lord, and depart from evil” (KJV). Notice that it is written, “[he] shall direct thy paths.” The word paths, is plural and not singular. We do not travel down a singular path on our life journey. We are presented with several paths to choose from along our temporal journey. It is God’s design that we NOT be pre-programmed robots but human beings with the ability to make up our own minds.
For believers our Holy Bible assures us that God is with us, loves us with a love we cannot comprehend, and will never leave us alone. I personally like Luke 19:10 where Christ Jesus said, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (KJV). Before choosing your path, may I strongly urge you to secure a solid relationship with God? Reflect on these two facts: (1) we all have the mind of Christ and (2) The Holy Spirit is with every one of us. We just need to listen to Him and act according to His direction. Our Holy Bible gives us the “how to” instructions plainly and clearly. Remember that He will never leave you alone. However, I want to remind you that God can be exceptionally hard to hear — to a nonbeliever as well as what I refer to as Sunday Christians. If He seems hard to hear, I would like to offer this suggestion — study Scripture in your Holy Bible! Your answer(s) is there. I am convinced that God “speaks” to us in and through Scripture.
Pleaseallow this brief digression— Other than being God’s creation, I consider myself nothing special in the natural. Nevertheless, I know what I know and I admit what I do not know. THIS I KNOW — I am convinced that God “speaks” to us in and through Scripture. If you need proof of what I say through a plausible discussion or argument in an authoritative source please consider this: (1) According to the academic arena, I am a scholar (that’s what I was told by my doctoral mentor anyway) (2) I do not need to claim that title but do consider myself, among others things, an honest researcher of truth-regardless of the outcome (3) Spiritual maturity is stunted until you ignore the ego (in all its forms) and get acquainted with the true you and (4) Come to the Cross of Christ Jesus. Until you come to the foot of the Cross - you will never know how to hear God, which greatly diminishes your being able to understand the Truth!For the True Disciples of Christ Jesus, our Holy Bible “[is] the “constitution” of the Christian world, not in the sense of being a collection of laws but in the sense of being its foundation”(Borg, 2013). Our Lord sees what is hidden, deep in our hearts. What you say, and all your Christian acts are useless unless your heart is full of the true love of God. Brethren, I implore you to come to the foot of the Cross. It has been said before…there must be the Cross-before the Crown!