Road signs marked the way like sentinels, speaking of towns and villages that lay before him. Sunglasses firmly fixed upon him, he glanced down at the speedometer and reveled in the velocity.
Then, a blaring noise rushed over the wind, sending a shiver down his spine as he glanced into the rearview mirror. Blue and red lights flashed behind him! He maneuvered over to let the state patrol car pass, only to be surprised that it stayed with him, right on his tail, with lights ablaze and siren howling.
Disturbed by this, he pulled over, knowing that certainly the officer just needed more room to get around him. Nope. He pulled in behind the man and angled his car.
In a moment, the officer stepped out of his patrol car and walked up to the side window of the man’s red convertible. Instinctively he rolled down the window, forgetting he already had the top down.
“What seems to be the problem, officer?” the man asked with obvious annoyance.
The officer shook his head in subtle disbelief. “Let me see your license and registration and your proof of insurance please.”
The man handed over the requested documents, “But what’s the matter, officer?”
“Do you know how fast you were going?”
“Sure,” he replied. “I was doing 85.”
The officer began writing in his book, “Didn’t you see the speed limit sign? The law says 60 miles per hour on this highway.”
“Well,” the man continued, “I didn’t break the law. The minimum limit is 60 and I made sure that I didn’t go below the limit. I kept it well above 60!”
The state patrolman gazed hard upon the man for a moment, “Sir,” he continued, “60 miles per hour is the MAXIMUM limit allowed on this highway.”
“Well,” the man said with a huff, “that’s your interpretation, not mine.”
The above narrative is not a true story, but I trust that it might quickly convey the direction of this article. But, let’s forge ahead anyway.
I won’t deny that some things in the Bible are challenging to grasp, however, there are clear and understandable truths given to us in God’s Word. Despite this, many have skewed the Scriptures with various private interpretations that have no genuine basis for belief. Because many would prefer to live their life according to their own desires, they misinterpret the Scriptures to justify their lives and then claim to be living in accordance with His teaching.
Just like there is an obvious nature to the posted laws on the highway and they are not subject to individual interpretation, so the Bible will not bow down to the various and sundry opinions offered by those who wish to live apart from its rule.
Peter clearly states this.
And we have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. ~ 2 Peter 1:19-20
Just because a person doesn’t like the word of God or agree with the word of God does not mean that they are then given the right to reinterpret the word of God to their own satisfaction. And yet, Paul warns Timothy (and us) about such things:
I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. ~ 2 Timothy 4:1-4
Even the prophet Isaiah warned about such times when he prophesied in Isaiah 5:20, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!”
Today I read an article from a former pastor who has abandoned his faith in Christ because to hold firmly to the word of God does not conform to the current cultural philosophy or a politically correct paradigm. The thing about the word of God is this: it will never change, despite the effort of those who wish to interpret it according to their own desire for personal gratification.
Just like the driver in the story above, where his interpretation of the speed limit didn’t change the truth, so all the effort of a society wishing to live comfortably in their sins and not be condemned in them, will never shift the reality of God’s word.
The choice then is this: we either come to God in total and contrite confession of our sins, seeking His grace and mercy in Christ or we try to manipulate the word of God to rationalize our sinful behavior only to discover that He has not changed one word of it to conform to our interpretation. One choice will bring us into His mercy and grace; the other will keep us condemned in our sins.
Which choice will you make?