I received a comment on my previous post about the Message Translation of the Bible. I have chosen not to allow the comment to be put on my web page. I could tell by the short comment that this person does love the Lord and is only trying to do what they see as “the right thing to do” but my goal of this blog is to bring encouragement to people and to offer my thoughts and suggestions on subjects that interest other people in situations similar to my own. My goal in discussing the Message Bible is not to have a theological debate about it’s worth and accuracy. My goal in discussing it is to share with people that God uses many forms to teach and share His love for all of us.
There are Christians in all walks of life. There are well educated Christians, there are illiterate Christians, there are simple minded Christians, there are theology scholars who are Christians.
Every Sunday my pastor and all the other pastors of the world stand before us Christians and give us their personal interpretation of what the Bible means. They read from it, study it, study other books about it, etc and then share with us what they have learned and how the Bible instructs us to live our daily lives- as our pastor has interpretted it. To me, the Message Bible is very similar to my pastor- just in written form. I am college educated and have learned more about living my life according to Christ through reading the Message Bible, listening to a “down home” pastor, and answering questions from a dear man who is very intelligent but not well read than I have ever learned through a King James Bible, a New International Version, a Scofield, or any pastor who has spoken to me basing his information on theological beliefs.
Studying the scriptures is the best way to learn what God was/is trying to say. I do not believe that God intended for all of us to argue about which translation is truly “of God” and which ones are not. All of them, I believe, are serving a purpose for God. People who are highly educated might find certain translations to work best for them, illiterate people might learn about God only through word of mouth, simple minded people might learn more about God by reading common language and listening to the common man. All of these people are different and all of them need a different form of God’s word to help then learn to be more like Jesus.
If you are one of those people who feel that Christianity is not for you because the Bible makes “no sense”, I encourage you to try the Message Bible. If you are one of those people who is well read in scripture and can understand more complicated or more exact translations, then please do so. We all love God and He instructs us to love everyone – He does not specify. . . . . . . God uses the broken, the abused, the simple-minded for His purpose. How many famous people of the Bible that served God well were well educated and without many flaws? Not many, I’m afraid. He uses those who cannot speak well and speaks through them. He uses those who are dying and heals them so that they can spread His message. He uses those who disobey his commands and works through them to bring greatnes to His kingdom. He uses the shy and timid to bring about great change. I could go on and on. . . . .
God can and will use the Message Bible to bring more people to Christ. He has already and he will continue to . . . . .