From the age when I really started to pay attention in church I can remember my pastor say, “Have your Bible out and read along…I may read it wrong.” My late pastor wanted us to understand the importance of reading the Bible for ourselves just in case his interpretation was wrong. That bit of advice has come to serve me well as a hearer of God’s Word when a speaker, teacher, or minister of the God’s Word says something that is inaccurate or misstated.
Recently someone that I respect as an authority of the Bible proved my pastor’s advice right. In an effort to prove my point in a in a class I used a particular story from the Bible. The person agreed but stated a different ending. Since it had been a while since I had read the story that was in question I did not challenge the person. I was puzzled but said ok. In retrospect I wish I had challenged them further or had them to show me the biblical reference.
In preparation for another blog I began to study the content of that bible story and discovered that two stories had been mixed together. I was reminded of the advice of my now deceased pastor and God’s Word to “accurately handle” the Word of Truth as the Amplified translation of 2 Timothy 2:15 states. I would have never realized the problem had I not studied the Bible for myself.
What happened in class that time was not unique or put on one person. This can happen to anyone (including me) who preaches, teaches, or talks about the Bible. So the next time you are listening to someone teach, preach or speak about the Bible make sure to have your Bible out and read along and later study it for yourself.
Just another day’s journey of remembering to have my study the Bible for myself. Peace.