There was a saying that I once heard that I've kept...
Many things in the Bible I don't understand.
Many things in the Bible I only think I understand
But there are many things in the Bible I cannot misunderstand.
"Religious" people throughout the ages has either ignored, misquoted, misapplied, and misunderstand/misunderstood the Word of God...I'm guilty...but like the last part of that quote says, there are many things in the Bible that I cannot misunderstand. John 1:12...how can we misunderstand such a simple concept? John 1:12 "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:" Using God's word as the guideline...not everyone is a child of God...only those who received Him and believe in His name.
We are called to a relationship with God through Jesus. The more we learn about Jesus, the closer we get to God. I believe in listening to teachers of the Word, but like Acts 17:10,11 says:
10 Then the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea. When they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
We should receive the word with readiness, but also check scriptures out for ourselves whether what we are being told is true. Most people think that since "we don't have a degree" we should trust what the 'learned' people tell us. I believe God is bigger than degrees...sometimes degrees can be a hindrance to God. We get so caught up in how smart we are, we forget that God uses the simple things of the world to confound the wise. We doubt God, because someone "smarter" than us causes us to question what the word of God says. I don't "know it all." I don't claim to. I'm no smarter than you. You know me. But for me, it's not about me...It's about Jesus. Not how religious I can be. Religion is about trying to make myself better. I can't do it. But, as I trust Jesus on this journey I'm on, I find that He makes me better without me having to think about it.
The Word of God is not some daunting religious document meant only for scholars with letters to tell us what they say. The Word of God is a love letter to "those who believe" to "those who call on His Name." It is God's promises to us. It's His reminder to us of how much He loves us.
Oh, there is just so much to the depths of God's love, the simplicity of His Grace, that gets lost in the morass of religion.
If we think we are good enough because we've done our "religious duty" we miss the awesome love of God that was given to us by the sacrifice of His Son on the cross. If we think that God can loves us any more because we behave ourselves and follow all the rules, we miss the awesome love that God has for us.
As bad as I am, I know how much God loves me and I would not trade that for anything. His grace is sufficient for me...