Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Difference Between Night and Day

Last evening, I went to a talk by Joel Hoffman.  He is an American scholar, linguist, translator, and of course, speaker.  I enjoyed his presentation.  He is quite entertaining.  I learned more of what I thought I knew.  The Bible is composed of different genres and has been translated many times by people with limitations, e.i., cultural biases.  It was good to have my knowledge expanded by Dr. Hoffman.

I listened with interest his take on the Bible's stand on homosexuality, when life begins, pacifism and the ten commandments.  In short, it's the opposite of what is commonly thought.  This is what surprised me and elicited the most discussion afterwards.

So I went home, jazzed.  I did go right to bed and immediately fell asleep.  However, I woke up a couple of hours later, thinking about Dr. Hoffman's take on today's cultural "hot spots."  I had the urge to get up and hustle out an email to my pastor.  I was going to tell him that the Interfaith Council had been tricked by the rabbi into allowing an anti-Christian speaker to present his screed. Hoffman attacked our Christian beliefs.  What our Biblical scriptures teach, he tried to prove was wrong.  In essence, he was saying that we Christians base our faith on false scriptures.

Of course, I know that you don't get out of bed and dash out an email.  You'll be sorry, later.  So I turned over and went back to sleep.  Planning, however, to write in the morning.

Morning came and I couldn't be bothered.  Besides, what was I thinking?  I was thinking exactly like Dr. Hoffman said the scripture writers and translators thought.  As human beings, we allow our feelings, culture, misinterpretations, and imaginations flourish our view of scripture.  There is more than just words to take into consideration when reading the Bible.  There's history and culture of the times, and don't forget our own personal take on the subject at hand--whether it's in the middle of the night, or after a good night's sleep.

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