interpreting scriptures

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My mother didn’t believe in pushing religion on us or shoving god down our throat, she instead let us pick and choose whatever it is we wanted to believe in and would back us regardless of belief… my real grandfather on the other hand spoke to us every chance he could about the bible and being catholic… if it were not for his devotion and complete faith towards god perhaps i would not have seen the “god complex” that certain people in my life held..

Being told i would not enter the gates of heaven unless i was baptized, or that i should go out of my way to find my “real dad” because it’s the commandment, being told i needed to confess my sins, or that i would be going to hell because i am catholic and the brown scapular i wore was insulting to god or that i would be damned to hell if i wasn’t saved along with so many other things, were it wasn’t about just talking about the bible to me it was more like these people felt as if they had that power to judge and damn people to hell as if they were god him self… some where along the lines of learning the bible they developed a god complex….

i am aware of the verse we are all made in his likeness, but i am not aware of any scriptures that say people hold that power to damn others to hell… being told you needed to be saved or if i did anything wrong in life you would burn in hell is one thing and therefore their distorted translation of scriptures gave me this idea that god is unforgiving and merciless, but once i started to read the bible i saw they failed to mention the fact that god is a compassionate and forgiving god…

i let people express their views on the bible but i saw in that expressing how they view bible it was simply their interpretation of the bible and instead of taking their word for it i began to look it up for myself… my real grandfather in reciting scriptures gets pissed off at the devil and never fails to say “GODDAMN THE DEVIL” eventually my mother had enough of that and tells him to not take the lords name in vain at all around her and his reply to that is “i feel like god gives me that right to use his name in vain”… i have yet to come across a scripture that says under any circumstance taking his name in vain is alright. or another person who is told that a scripture states “if god be for you who can be against you” and he interpreted that as “if you are not for me, then you are against me”, obviously everyone interprets scriptures differently but life has shown me some who feel as if they are god him self…

just because you claim to understand the bible doesn’t make you god, or having made mass and getting those jesus wafers and a sip of wine doesn’t make you superior to anyone else, and not one church is more holier and more worthy of heaven than another …              after all isn’t it the same god we all acknowledge?

The bible offers so many different things to people, but i wouldn’t have thought it would have been a means to inflate peoples ego and give them a “god complex”

To see and hear people feel superior to god to the point where they feel they are god is awful and i am sure that in it being written there wasn’t the intention for making you feel like it’s to twist and distort in ways that work and only apply to yourself…

55 thoughts on “interpreting scriptures

  1. I agree. It seems that religion is such a huge topic in the news. The ethics, the morals, the respect. People have used the bible as a weapon, rather than a shield. My understanding of following the bible was to be accepting and loving toward other people. My job on earth is not to judge.
    Thank you for sharing.

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  2. As a Christian, I agree with the earlier comments. You develop a personal relationship with God if you want to do so. No one has the right to judge you. Period. You read the Bible, interpret it as you will, and try to not let others’ comments get to you. I know it’s difficult to do, but there is a reason the world has so many religions.

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  3. Are you still as practicing catholic? I was raised not strictly catholic (my dad made us make our communion but after that, my mom allowed us to quit sunday school and I no longer follow any organized religion. My daughters father was raised Jewish but has a portugese father so also celebrated catholic holidays. Since I’ve had my child and didn’t baptize her I have always felt this unfounded fear of her going to hell because of it. I love Pope Francis though and he has denounced that belief system but with something so ingrained its hard to change that mindset. I’d love to know you thoughts and see how you are doing to. my “real” grandfather was not religious but was my dads stepfather because my biological grandfather was a prick. It feels like we have a lot in common

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    • I like pope Francis as well. Catholic is my blood while I may not go to mass every Sunday its still part of me. I was told I would be going to hell if I didn’t get baptized and that I’d go to hell if I wasn’t saved into another religion. I read for myself certain things in the bible without someone else distorting it. It might be ingrained in you but the church isn’t god and loves us all equally wether were bathed in holy water or not. It does seem like we have a lot in common doesn’t it 🙂

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      • I too am what they call a ‘lapsed Catholic’ lol…I lapsed right off of the map and into a coma … j/k. I was raised in the Catholic faith and I don’t think one can fully divest themselves of it when that is the case. I do not attend Church, however, I do pray, I answer to my conscience and I do my best to be a decent human being whenever possible. And to me, that is what Christ asks of us, really. My parents came UN-G-L-U-E-D when I announced that I thought perhaps (I was about 18) I might fancy attending Jerry Falwell’s Liberty Baptist College…holy shit kids! My Dad was steamed at me a good long time when I decided to stop attending Mass back then. I began to have my own ideas and questions. I am sure my mother was convinced at that point that I would surely burn in Hell for that. She got over it. He did too. I like the new Pope, too, btw. It is quite a different approach, taking on the modeling of St. Francis of Assisi, one that I believe is good for the awful damage done to the Church over the scandals of recent years. I hope this Pope can restore more hope and faith in the world at large by leading in example as he endeavors to bring about a simpler and humbler persona of Pope to show he is simply a man of the people.

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      • Haha exactly. That’s what i feel like the whole is about to. I know what you mean my grandfather was pissed at his kids for a while for them not maintaining tradition. After his comment on sexuality and how he said it wasn’t for him to judge I was beyond impressed

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  4. Unfortunately, “religion” is man made and people forget that it is man interpreting what God says and often times we get it wrong. The beautiful part is that God extends so much grace to us that even when we are wrong, if we are open to it, He can alter our views and thinking to right thinking.
    The truth is that if we are “religious” but not in relationship with God, then we will be legalistic and hurt people just like you are talking about. People use religion as an excuse and it is sad.
    Our job is to be in right relationship with God and others and if we are then we can lovingly speak the truth and be led by the Holy Spirit to say and do the right things at the right time.
    I am so sorry for the hurt inflicted on you by people claiming to be following Jesus. Thank you for sharing. Your words are raw and full of feeling. It is wonderful!

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  5. Merryn

    So glad you have read the Bible for yourself Teddy. You are so right about people distorting scripture – far too much of that happening in the world. There’s a verse that says “..and you will seek Me (God) and find Me when you search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13) and another one, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8). I have come to realise in my own life, it’s not enough to just depend on what others say about the Bible – people need to read the words for themselves, for “…all Scripture is God-breathed…”(2 Timothy 3:16)
    Bible Gateway is a useful website for searching scriptures in different versions, just to compare the translations too.

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  6. I think it is in people’s nature to interpret whatever they read be it the bible or anything. I think this is why we have religious scholars who can never agree on anything. 🙂 I’ve seen so many versions of Christianity, let alone other faiths, that I have come to accept that there is no absolute truth. The only thing I hope for is that people use that word for good and not to judge others, or worse, to inflict harm.

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  7. I have lost many friends who suddenly took their religion to the next level and decided that the way they live their life is far superior to mine. I check in from time to time just to see if life has blown up in their face, but they seem to keep marching to their Holier than Thou drum, and they aren’t missing a step. My judgement day is reserved for my punishment from God to me. Not from everyone else to me. I got enough I have to answer for one day without having to answer for things every single day.

    One of my ‘friends’ that stopped talking to me is actually bisexual and borderline lesbian. She also happens to be Southern Baptist. Homosexuality is a big no-no in that (my former) religion. She pretends in church to be straight … who knows what she’s doing now, behind closed doors. I supported her, though. I encouraged her to be who she is. In the end, I wasn’t “Christian” enough.

    Good luck to them. I think they forget that they have to answer for their sins as well.

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  8. I just read some of your posts. Heavy stuff. I see tons of pain and even more tons of openness to healing. I pray for healing and self-compassion for you and all the rest of us who struggle with what we’ve inherited. Thanks for visiting my blog today!

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  9. Great post, I still remember my mother putting me in my place when I was in a “holier than thou” attitude as a teen. She said “Congratulations, you’re the best out of all the other sinners.”
    Faith is a daily journey, no matter what you believe

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  10. Religion is such a personal thing. I think it’s a good thing to expose your child to some religion when its young, for a foundation on morals and being generally aware of how it works. However, after a certain age, it should be left to the child whether they wish to pursue it, or explore another option.
    Pushing something too hard on children often has the opposite of the intended affect.

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  11. This is very true. My friend and I were talking about this when I went back home. We can’t use the Bible as a weapon against humanity. Instead, we should use it to spread love. It is not up to us to judge others.

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  12. Whenever someone argues with my belief by quoting the bible, I become deaf all of a sudden. Don’t get me wrong, I love the people, I have all the respect to people who use the bible to guide them in the right path, but when it is used to propagate self righteousness, and to prove how sinful others are, it’s disappointing.

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