When first reading an article featured in Relevant Magazine by John Pavlovitz, 5 Things I Wish Christians Would Admit About the Bible, I found myself feeling a mixture of mild reactions: chagrined by the banality, and indifferent because of the banality. While the magazine does occasionally publish some thoughtful pieces, the majority seem to be either old fashioned theological liberalism dressed up in contemporary Millennial angst, or shallow pragmatism desperately wanting to be considered poignant and profound. This particular article managed to qualify for both categories, as Pavlovitz offered his handful of wishes that people would understand:
- The Bible Isn’t a Magic Book
- The Bible Isn’t as Clear as We’d Like It to Be
- The Bible Was Inspired by God, Not Dictated by God
- We All Pick and Choose the Bible We Believe, Preach and Defend
- God is Bigger Than the Bible
Really going out on a limb there, with such staggering assertions. (Note sarcasm.)
It was not until I read a post by Blake Deal, What We Will Not “Admit” About the Bible, that I even gave it a second thought. What had seemed unworthy to receive much consideration had now been given a thoughtful, appropriate corrective. After reading Deal’s rebuttal, I started thinking to myself: “I wish I’d written that”.
Whether one takes the time to read Pavlovitz’s piece or not, I think Deal’s observations are worth the few minutes it takes to read them, both for their succinct affirmations of the historic faith, and as an example of a good way to address other straw man allegations levied against historic Christian orthodoxy in the name of becoming relevant to this present generation.