For a while now I have been disturbed by the amount of time and effort that goes into defending the King James version of the Bible. Before you get angry and label me a heretic, let me state that I am a firm believer in the KJV. It is the only version I consider to be the Word of God (in English) and it is the only Bible I have ever used in my entire life (in English). However, I am disturbed because I see people become consumed with knowing how to defend it and/or spending large amounts of time, money, and even going so far as to engage in one too many arguments over it's preservation. Let me make another statement, yes it is important to know how to defend your Bible, but if that's all you do then you're doing something wrong.
I have been studying what my duty as a Christian is, and while the Bible does say in 2 Timothy 2:15, "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.", it also says,
"Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world." - James 1:27
"Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt. Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child. If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto me, I will surely hear their cry;" - Exodus 22:21-23
"Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger, nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow's raiment to pledge: But thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee thence: therefore I command thee to do this thing." - Deuteronomy 24:17-18
"Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy. Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked." - Psalm 82:3-4
"Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow." - Isaiah 1:17
"Thus saith the LORD; Execute ye judgment and righteousness, and deliver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place." - Jeremiah 22:3
"Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother: And oppress not the widow, nor the fatherless, the stranger, nor the poor; and let none of you imagine evil against his brother in your heart." - Zechariah 7:9-10
And my personal favorite that I have made my life verses,
"Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? ...take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity...draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul..." -Isaiah 58:6-7, 10-11
I realize the Lord commands us to do many more things, but from reading Exodus 22:23-24, Deuteronomy 10:17-19, Deut. 24:19-22, Deut. 26:12 Deut. 27:19, Psalm 10:14b, Psalm 68:5 Psalm 146:9,
Isaiah 10:1-2, and Malachi 3:5, to name a few, it is clear what God holds dear to His heart.
Moreover the character of Job, a man God called perfect and upright, is depicted in Job 29 as such, "When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; and when the eye saw me, it gave witness to me: Because I delivered the poor that cried, and the fatherless, and him that had none to help him. The blessing of him that was ready to perish came upon me: and I caused the widow's heart to sing for joy. I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem. I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame. I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out. And I brake the jaws of the wicked, and plucked the spoil out of his teeth.*" (verses 11-17)
Psalm 12:6-7 (popular verses that people use to champion the King James) says, "The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever." Notice God is the one doing the preservation, not you. Sure we must study to show ourselves approved, but what is it that God has really called us to? Which of the two gets the most attention from you? God has promised to preserve His Word and He has a different task for us. Don't waste your time fighting the wrong battle.
*Nowadays the way we break the jaws of the wicked and pluck the spoil from their teeth is through prayer. I do not recommend you walking up to anybody and pulling a Job move.
Thursday, February 23, 2012
|image courtesy of weheartit|
Exists in the arms of
Along with magic and
Lives taken from the uncertain
And placed withing a visionary's
Come together to form
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
|image from weheartit|
I stepped into another world today
In which I found you
Amid the gray depths of my soul
And stayed awhile next to your shadow
I left the color and solidity
For the coolness of murky waters
Just for a chance to hold your hand
Even if we're nothing but shadows