Søren Kierkegaard once said, “The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians are a bunch of scheming swindlers. We pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well that the minute we understand, we are obliged to act accordingly.” He’s absolutely correct. The Bible is very easy to understand. The question really is whether or not we want to hear what it has to say. With knowledge comes responsibility, and with responsibility comes obligation. If we know what the Word says, we are either compelled to obey it or reject it.
It seems as if modern Christianity, particularly the Western variety, is insistent on confusing the simple message of the Gospel. In order to make it look more like the American way, we have rationalized and explained away passages that don’t fall in line with what we want to believe. It is now commonplace to elevate one sin over another, applying a scale of severity never found in scripture. As long as we avoid the sin of what those people are doing, we are better Christians despite the myriad of sins in our own lives. The Bible is much simpler than that. It says that sin is wrong. It’s simple stuff that we have convoluted and misshapen to make us feel better about ourselves. God sees through this act of deception and pride and calls it what it is: sin.
We tell half-truths in order to stand on what is perceived to be the Christian side of an argument. For example, we call ourselves pro-life but validate the bombing of people in foreign lands. We make exceptions to our pro-life stance for things such as capital punishment, easily reciting the “eye for an eye” verse (Exodus 21:23-25) while carefully avoiding Jesus’ command to turn the other cheek (Matthew 5:38-39). That makes us both hypocrites and liars. Most pro-lifers are intentionally telling a half truth, which last time I checked was still a lie and a violation of God’s law (Exodus 20:16). The Bible again is easy to understand. We are told to love all people as ourselves, to forgive those who wrong us, regardless of how many times we have been offended (Mark 12:30-31; Matthew 6:12; Matthew 18:21-22). Loving others leaves no room for killing them whether by abortion, a form of punishment, or an act of war. It’s that simple.
It’s time to put away our Western version of Christianity and return to the Biblical model of following Christ. We’ve wasted too much time telling the world what we are against instead of loving them unconditionally and sharing the message of Jesus with them. The Bible is a fascinating book, but at its core it is a simple book. Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins. He did this because of His great love for us. He did not come to condemn the world but to save it (John 3:16-17). Our mission is to go and tell everyone the great news of His salvation, discipling them to walk in the footsteps of Christ (Matthew 28:19). We are to be perfect as He is perfect (Matthew 5:47-48). It’s simple if we would only accept it at face value. The hard part is deciding for who and for what we will live. I’ll choose simple. I’ll choose Christ.
Do you think the Bible is simple? Why or why not? You can share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.