Truth revealed

We’re told that the Bible is an account of the relationship of people with God.  It’s the attempt of some people to explain what they experienced, and how they experienced their contact with some thing greater than themselves.   It was written by specific people with real life experiences for their fellows to understand (and by written I mean communicated – I know the oral traditions would have existed before the written words).

The troubles with the Bible are manifold

It ignores large swathes of humanity and human experience.
It has been misused to justify outrageous, unGodly, immoral behaviour (I’m thinking of slavery, of discrimination of all kinds, of murder).

It stops.

It stops.

It stops.  There is no more.

It stops at Revelation, as if that was the last experience of God that humanity had, anywhere on earth.

I went to see “Les Miserables’ nearly 20 years ago, and there is one line that I heard that has stayed with me ever since.

“To love another person is to see the face of God.”

It isn’t part of the biblical Canon, but it does speak to me of my experience of my fellow humans and of my experience of God.  If we are all bearers of an image of God, then loving another people is to experience another image of God.  And the more images of God we experience, the more complete our picture.  Of course, we will not experience God completely until we stand face to face in the Presence.  But if we are to love God, and to love our neighbour as ourselves, then this bit of wisdom, of truth, from the pen of the translator of a work of fiction seems worthy of inclusion in my mental Bible, the one that speaks of my own encounter with God, of the words I wish to share to reflect The Word more clearly.

The Bible may stop.  But the Word continues.  



One response to “Truth revealed

  1. I've often wondered why the Bible stopped at Revelation, perhaps what was revealed gives all of the sustenance we need? Or, was it because all of the earlier witnesses to Jesus' ministry had passed and the ones who followed on just thought that no new experience of God would outdo what had already been written.

    I suppose that if you took the history of Christian experience from those days, you would have a couple of hundred new books? But, can you truthfully portray them as 'the word' because they are our human experience, with occasional interventions of the divine, but mostly, to individuals, not groups. And, we hungry for evidence no longer seek new mysteries or at least, we tend to be pessimistic about them.

    For example, Padre Pio with the Stigmata. Sainted by the Roman Catholic Church, but largely ignored by most other Christians. I don't know the answers, but suspect that if we take the whole body of Christian writing since Revelation, that is presumably the bible updated, but largely disconnected?

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