How to Read the Bible

As followers of this blog may know, I have been diagnosed schizoaffective because I believe, among other things, that I am the antiChrist and that the Bible was written by Satan (Old Testament, anyway). It’s that last conclusion of my “illness” that I wish to comment on here. Basically, it’s a kind of bombshell if it’s taken seriously. If. The problem is that I haven’t studied the Bible much. I went to Catholic schools growing up, so I got some basic Bible knowledge from that, but it is hardly what I would call extensive. After 12th grade, I pretty much had no further reason to read it. I once made the effort to read the New Testament once on my own, but that was about it. That all changed when I turned 25 and fell “ill.” I came to the conclusion that Satan had written the Old Testament and that God, as depicted there, was really Satan pretending to be God. I based my reasoning on a few selected parts of the Bible that I interpreted in my own fashion. As someone once said, “The Bible is like a person; if you torture it long enough, you can make it say anything.”

Although I still believe what I do about Satan and the Bible, I am no longer quite as certain. I came to the decision that I should make the effort to study the Bible a little bit before I draw such a radical conclusion. I mean, I do not have a degree in religious studies or anything of the sort. My conclusion, therefore, may be precipitous.

So, one of the first questions I must answer is: How to read the Bible. For a long time, I have not known the answer to this question. I thought of the Bible as simply a book, a text of recorded events. A history book, perhaps? A collection of life parables, maybe? Although I am still unsure how to read the Bible, I think I have a better understanding of how NOT to read the Bible. I don’t think it should be read literally, for one. Well, when I consider it as a serious religious text (and not the work of Satan), I don’t think it should be read literally. Were the Jews surrounded on both sides by towering walls of water with the Egyptians in hot pursuit? Maybe, but I don’t know. Or is it all meant as instructive allegory?

There is one point in particular, though, that I know I was in error in. I use to think that because the behavior of many of the people in the Bible was deplorable, I shouldn’t seek to find any commonality with them.

But we are all sinners.

I, and you, and everyone, have that in common with all the characters in the Bible. I always looked at the Bible as a handbook for behavior. But David and all the others did some atrocious things. Now, I think I should look at it from the point of view that David was a sinner—and his story is meant to tell how he, a mortal sinner, related to God. The focus is on that relationship, not David’s failings.

One thing is certain: the Bible is not a science manual and cannot be read as such. I used to play a lot of AD&D. In AD&D there are classes for both wizards and priests. Wizards rely on high intelligence. Priests rely on high wisdom. The Bible is more fitting for priests than it is wizards (or our modern day scientists). It uses a different muscle than strictly analytical thought.

Anyway, I’m currently on my first read through of the Bible. I’m almost done; I’ve got about ten pages left to the OT. As of yet, I still don’t know what to conclude.

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