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Starfleet Regulations…. The Spirit Or The Letter?

December 27, 2014
Greetings,
Living under the bondage of the law rather than in
the freedom of the Spirit can assume many forms.
In our time, living under the law may assume the form
of biblicism. Many suppose that the evangelical faith 
stands or falls on the matter of biblical inerrancy 
­meaning that the very letter of Holy Scripture is 
without any error in everything it affirms, including
theology, history, ethics, geography, biology and
chronology.

The great danger of biblicism is that, instead of 
being used solely in the service of the gospel, 
the bible becomes a mere book of rules about many other
issues. Christians may become enslaved to the bible
just as the Jews became enslaved to the Torah­ their
Holy Scripture (John 10:34,35). Just as the Jews 
barricaded themselves behind the letter of
the Torah to oppose Jesus, so we may easily barricade
ourselves behind the letter of a supposedly inerrant
bible to oppose the gospel's obvious festival of freedom.

There can be a false faith in the bible. In the 
proper spiritual sense faith is an act of real
worship which should be rendered solely to the
Creator (John 9:35-38). Saving faith is not faith 
in the bible (for even the Christ-denying
Pharisees trusted in the bible John 5:39) but faith 
in Jesus (Rom. 3:22-26). While Catholics have been 
particularly susceptible to ecclesiology, the worship 
of the church, Protestants have been disposed toward 
bibliolatry or­ the worship of the bible.

The purpose of all Scripture is to bear witness to 
Jesus Christ (John 5:39;20:31). The bible in itself is not 
the Word of God. The Word of God is a person
(John 1:1). Neither does the bible have life, 
power or light in and of itself any more than did the 
Jewish Torah. These attributes may be ascribed 
to the bible only by virtue of its relationship 
to Him who is The Word, Life, Power and Light. Life 
is not in the book, as the Pharisees claimed, 
but only in the Jesus Christ of the book (John 5:39).

The bible is therefore to be valued because of 
its testimony to Jesus Christ. The Bible is 
absolutely trustworthy and reliable for the 
purpose it was given. It is designed to make us 
"wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus" 
(2 Tim. 3:15), not wise on such subjects as science,
history and geography ­which it is our 
responsibility to learn through common revelation.

That which makes the bible the bible is the gospel. 
When the Spirit bears witness to our hearts of the
truth of the bible, this is an internal witness
concerning the truth of the gospel. We need to be
apprehended by the Spirit, who lives in the gospel,
and then judge all things by that Spirit even the
letter of the written Word.

If we do not allow the bible to be the Word of 
God the bearer of the gospel it might be better 
to follow Martin Luther's advice to read some other book.
For if the bible is not used in the service of 
the gospel, it may either find people mad or make 
them mad.

We must stop using the bible as though it were 
a potpourri of inerrant proof-texts by which we 
can bring people into bondage to our religious
traditions. (For in practice the only inerrancy 
we ever defend is the inerrancy of our religious 
traditions and our very own way of reading the Bible.) 
We must no longer use the bible as the Pharisees 
used the Torah when they gave it absolute and 
final status. Christian biblicism is no 
different from Jewish legalism. It is the old 
way of the letter, not the new way of the 
Spirit (Rom. 7:6).

Jesus and Paul declared that apart from the Spirit 
we cannot understand the truth (John 16:13; 
I Cor. 2:14). This means that unless we are 
caught up in the Spirit of the gospel, we cannot 
understand or even use the bible correctly. Apart 
from the gospel the bible is letter (gramma), 
not Spirit (pneuma). "The letter kills, but the 
Spirit gives life. Now the Lord is the Spirit, 
and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is 
freedom" (II Cor. 3:6,17).
Love and......
Kirk Out !

P.s. This post was originally written many
years ago and I borrowed many, perhaps most,
of these words from others who inspired me.
However, I no longer remember who to give credit
to here today.  This is not 100% my intellectual
property.  To those who inspired me back then
and now I tip my hat.








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8 Comments
  1. All credit to Father same today as was then. Only difference here today, he lives in and through us, if we ask and are willing as they did waiting For Father to come and speak through them on that day of Pentecost. Same here to this day.
    So just ask Father who does the talking you or him through you? If it is you, me or anyone else and I, you or anyone else had to decide what to say, then the rest he gives is not in play is it?
    We who Have (past tense) rest from our works, as he Father is rested in his from the beginning
    Hebrews 3 and 4 real clear on this to me. And the having to wait of the Disciples fro to do the speaking and not them, I mean Jesus was alive risen in flesh and Spirit, told them all about it and why fro Forty days, why did they have to wait? For Father to take their place and them to be nothing but Father water glass to pour in and out onto the crowd, Love you Brother in the truth being said through you, clear as a bell to me, ad thank you

  2. That is we who have believed rest

  3. I call this working at rest, whistling while you work and not arrogantly, in humility be appreciative to be used as this water glass to pour out his Spirit, him doing it as we just go about in this world loving all in Mercy and truth to all, shining through us. God that is, not us, I reckon me dead and him alive in and through me as you are seeing this today and always have from day one you decided to beieve

  4. Skylla Moon permalink

    Without the revelation of the Holy Spirit the Bible or any other writing is lifeless. But it is way easier to follow a rule book then walk in the Spirit which demands death. Religion enables the appearance of piety while masking the reality of the heart. May the Lord continue His mighty work in circumcising deep inside

  5. Wow, I really thought this blog post would get more of a response than this so far. Maybe some folks are taking time to consider and ponder before they comment? I sure hope that is the case.

  6. Ramma permalink

    This subject can hit home many different ways and makes us pretty uncomfortable when we want to carry that little black book under our arm and feel holy. It can also scare us to look in our spiritual mirror and see if we have elevated the written word above God Himself and living in the Spirit. We have so much to learn of this new way of the Spirit. The new way of the Spirit is so simple and pure. Great thoughts. Thank you!

  7. From another one of God’s Children here to show us the freedom God really did come to give us
    “Reality is found in Jesus Christ.”
    When Paul said this to the Colossians, he was drawing a line between the shadow of death-dealing religion and the authentic substance of a life-giving Savior.
    Religion says it’s about you, but the gospel of grace declares it’s all about him. Religion says “Do, do, do,” but the good news declares “It’s done, done, done!” For too long the world has been bound by the never-ending demands of religion. True freedom is found in knowing the One whose yoke is easy and light!

    A Brother in Christ wrote this by the name of Paul Ellis, quite interesting his take on things, check it out if want, I find insight there for me

  8. "BK" permalink

    Good writing, Christopher. I especially liked the paragraph some may miss in being upset by the preceding ones and feel you are ‘Bible bashing’……
    “The bible is therefore to be valued because of
    its testimony to Jesus Christ. The Bible is
    absolutely trustworthy and reliable for the
    purpose it was given. It is designed to make us
    “wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus”
    (2 Tim. 3:15), not wise on such subjects as science,
    history and geography ­which it is our
    responsibility to learn through common revelation.

    “BK” here…..Jesus did not say He would leave or send a little black book called The Bible to lead us into all truth, but that He would send THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH to lead and guide us. I actually just finished reading a college text book out of respect for my son that was supposed to be a history of Christianity….much about the Bible and history of the books contained therein, and alot about Paul. The author begins his book by saying he won’t deal with theology, just history…but inevitably can’t really do it without his own theological training coming through. Making statements about how Christians believe about hell, the rapture, the devil, etc. I regularly told our son I would love to sit down and speak with the author on the things he finds ‘in error’ with the writings and give him my personal revelations on those things…..I find the generally accepted beliefs in error too. I think I could help him.

    I could see how those who are Bible worshippers (although people don’t really see they are) would be VERY upset and offended at the things the included. I found it wonderful. When I was finished I understand all the more why people who are opposed to Christianity and the Bible are….and can better help them. You see, when you don’t care whether THE WORD is letter perfect and perfectly lined up historically; or if the people they say wrote the varied letters really did or not….it doesn’t change a thing about the LIFE the Spirit brings as I read; doesn’t change a thing about the relationship I have with my Saviour, then a book like that only really solidifies the relationship and speaking of the Spirit, not destroys it. (don’t remember the name of the book or the author but if anyone is interested I’m glad to find out and post it).

    The Spirit does not go against the things written in the Bible….but It sure does blast away at the doctrines and beliefs we built from it. At least It did mine. But, oh the clarification to be found….and the freedom that comes to allow those who read it differently than me to be ‘ok’.

    So, again, good post. Just finished the book I mentioned so I am glad to have a chance to comment about it! Love, “BK”

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