Ok, ok, I know, I know…overdone title.
Since September my church has been reading through the Old Testament. All of the messages on Sundays have followed that reading plan. I can’t tell you how many times people have told me that the reading doesn’t make sense to them. And I get it, a lot of the Old Testament is difficult to comprehend.
I was greatly encouraged to read this by a Welsh pastor named Geoffrey Thomas:
“Do not expect to master the Bible in a day, or a month, or a year. Rather expect often to be puzzled by its contents. It is not all equally clear. Great men of God often feel like absolute novices when they read the Word. The apostle Peter said that there were some things hard to understand in the epistles of Paul (2 Peter 3:16). I am glad he wrote those words because I have felt that often.
So do not expect always to get an emotional charge or a feeling of quiet peace when you read the Bible…Let the Word break over your heart and mind again and again as the years go by, and imperceptibly there will come great changes in your attitude and outlook and conduct” (pg.22).
I confess that even as a seminary student, I go through many, many times when the Bible confuses me.
I think pastors can do a good job of putting up the air that they are Bible experts. They weave eloquent sermons every week, and provide answers to questions with Bible verses. Yet, I feel pretty confident in saying that the Bible even confuses the well versed pastor.
This isn’t to say you shouldn’t read the Bible. The only way for the Bible to be less confusing or not confusing, is to read it a lot.