7 Approaches to Parts of the Bible You Don’t Like

Everyone has parts of the Bible they don’t like.

Even if we don’t admit we don’t “like” those parts, we will at least admit we don’t know what to do with them.

What do you do with the parts you don’t know what to do with!?

Here are some options

  1. Completely ignore them. Yup, just pretend they don’t exist. Maybe if you ignore them long enough they will disappear.
  2. Deny inspiration. Find a way to undermine Scripture’s authority. Blame the individual authors for being wrongheaded. Ignore that bit about “all scripture” being God-breathed.
  3. Trump them with verses you do like. Find a handful of verses that you actually do like and make those verses somehow trump the ones you don’t like. Explain how the existence of this verse means you no longer need to deal with the verse you don’t like. Use the Bible to tell you why you don’t have to use the Bible.
  4. Follow theologians. If you follow esteemed people, it hardly matters whether you like the Bible; just quote your guys. Find the fancy theological loopholes only smart people can come up with and go with those and stop worrying about that silly old Bible.
  5. Don’t read the Bible. If you never read it;; you’ll never come across verses you don’t like! Just take other people’s word for what’s in there. Conform to a group. Leave the Bible on the shelf for all those smart people to figure out. Just float along in cheery ignorance.
  6. Study original languages. If you know Greek and Hebrew you can convince yourself you’re smart enough to know what words really mean and thus be able to redefine any problematic verse you come across. Be smarter than the Bible and bend it to your whims.

That’s pretty much it.

Those are your options.

I kid. I kid.

There remains one more option:

7. Shut up and deal with it! Stop trying to redefine and verbally escape passages you don’t like. Instead, bow the knee, humble yourself, and be taught. Truly find out why the Bible says what it says. Pray for wisdom and insight, not only in the Bible, but in the nature of God, the author behind the book. Keep your mouth shut, ears open, and prepare to learn. When you learn, adjust your life accordingly.

That is the most difficult option to go with (although learning Hebrew and Greek is tough). It’s the most costly and the most inconvenient. It’ll take you places your flesh has no desire to go.

But I highly recommend this approach. It’s the only one that will work in getting you prepared for Judgment Day.

Don’t be afraid of the Bible; these are words of life. Drink deeply and chew thoroughly. You will be filled.

2 thoughts on “7 Approaches to Parts of the Bible You Don’t Like”

  1. I think I tried most of those approaches at one time or another – but maybe the one that affected me most was a version of number 4: collecting a group of teachers that were saying the kind of things I wanted to hear. (2 Tim 4:3)

    In my case that eventually led to increased disillusionment, I almost gave up on God, and I went through a decade and a half of “spiritual crisis”.

    Even when I emerged from that period, my first inclination was to find other teachers, and it took a while to realise that I needed to (and COULD) go to scripture myself.

    One example I recall relates to the time I first came into contact with Calvinism. It is a theology that I immediately found offensive, but I found it difficult to argue against. So I tried to find teachings refuting Calvinist doctrine to help me understand its weaknesses. I was disappointed that I could find nothing convincing to help me – but my suspicions about of Calvinism remained.
    It was only when I looked beyond the proof texts offered by teachers from the opposing camps, and looked to the wider context of scripture as a whole (for myself), that I started to get the answers I needed.

  2. Indeed, I only know them cuz I tried them too.

    My issue was about Easy Believism and hyper extreme views on grace. I came to doubt these views by reading Paul, which is what everyone in that camp told me to do. So I did, and boy howdy, Paul does not say what they were saying. I decided to change my beliefs to align with what I saw Paul say, which then helped me see that Paul was saying the same thing as James, Peter, John, and even Jesus Himself. It made way more sense and brought continuity to my faith, which was cool!

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