Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Below is a reply I left to a person who quite rightly questioned my faith, and this within the comments section of a Youtube video. I just thought I’d share my response.
A Question of Faith.
Thank you for your reply. I maybe be wrong but your opening statement seems to imply that those who lean towards a more literal interpretation of scripture are intellectually deficient is some way. Please understand that I am not offended by this perception as in all honesty it is a view which I once held.
Personally, unless it is made clear that the text is referring to an analogy, parable [Matt 13:34] or is quite obviously symbolic...
Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars.
...I do my best to hold to a literal interpretation wherever possible as did the saints of old, a practice that has served me well. And I can say without hesitation that it is when people attempt to make the Word more palatable by ‘spiritualising away’ hard truths that stand in complete contrast to the values seen in the World their faith is shipwrecked. For it is by adhering to God’s Word that we are sanctified [separated] from the growing apostasy seen rising in the [compromising] Church.
Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.
I do not mean to offend when I say “you make many assumptions” in your statement, assumptions that are easily ‘assumed’ without having made a study of God Word first. I too might come to a like erroneous conclusion regarding your trade if having only taken only taken a fleeting glance tried to sum it up in a few words, but knowing your business more perfectly than myself you would very quickly see my error.
The plan of God is vast and involves reestablishing something glorious that that was lost, yet this ‘within the restraints of His righteousness’. In fact, God is so intend on maintain His right standing that to fulfil it He sent His only begotten Son to satisfy all righteousness regarding all those who have transgressed it if they will only believe on him who took all of their sins away.
As a fleeting glance at a situation might cause the ill informed to accuse a man of abusing a maid, only to discover upon further investigation that he was in fact giving her CPR so too can a person totally misinterpret the Scriptures as I once did. Solomon couldn’t have put it any better when regarding the likes of myself before I believed he said...
He who answers a matter before he has even heard it,
It is to his folly and to his shame.
Regarding the validity of the text there is much that could be said, not least that consisting of not one book validating itself as many suppose but rather sixty six, it was penned by forty different authors who living in different areas of the Middle East during different time periods, often never met but were compelled by He who exists outside of time to pen the scriptures that they are in agreement.
8 - “Remember this, and show yourselves men; recall to mind, O you transgressors.
9 - Remember the former things of old, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me,
10 - Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure...’”
However, I get your point, who having researched many religions finally turned to the Jewish text only to find myself mistreating many pastors because of their confident declarations that “Jesus loves me” and “Jesus died for my sins” made absolutely no sense. I could not understand nor comprehend the mechanism by which the death of God’s Son could deliver me from a guilty conscience, yet pressing on alone I continued to rant and rave against God.
But the long and short of it is this, that unimpressed by the sweet words of promise emanating out of the text which my carnal mind could not comprehend because they are ‘spiritually discerned’ [1 Cor 2:14], I came face to face with the impassable mountain of prophecy.
2 Peter 1:16-21
16 - For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
17 - For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
18 - And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
19 - We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
20 - Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
21 - For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
Here Peter, the author of the above text and eyewitness to Jesus states quite plainly that although he had walked with the Lord in the days of His flesh, touched Him, heard His voice and the Words of the Father at ‘The Transfiguration’ who said...
This is my beloved Son: hear him.
...Peter goes on to say that we have an even better witness, and that is the witness of prophecy!
And that is how it was with me, for having mocked and cast underfoot the gracious Words of Christ thinking to trump them with the erroneous conclusions of the likes of David Attenborough, oft based upon no more than a pile of monkey dung or a flint found under a tree, I suddenly realised that I would have to be intellectually dishonest to discard the fact that there must be an intelligence existing outside of time who authored the Holy Text, He having declared the end from the beginning.
As you can imagine, for sometime I was in crises with two worlds having collided. One where I went to work and paid my bills which having been taught throughout my school years was also promoted throughout all Western Media, and the other, once thought of as based upon fairies tales and leprechauns living at the end of the garden now rose up to challenge it.
Biblical prophecy is staggering, and is as far removed from the unstable heresies penned by the likes of Nostradamus as night is from day, which prophesied not merely the year or month that our Lord should appear, but rather the very day! Just one prophecy among hundreds fulfilled in His first appearing that had me step over the line of no return.
Everyone has a different story to tell, with many blessed with a unshakable faith bursting into life having only heard the gospel but once, whose lives explode as though a match had been struck in a tinder dry forest. But as for me, my forest was soaked in the moss sodden wood of unbelief, and it was only because of a stubborn determination to be delivered from the accusation of a God given conscience that sought to save my soul, that I was delivered from judgement and eternal death.
7 - Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8 - For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.