from the same book

It’s good to read that finally the politically and socially progressive religioius groups are getting mainstream press coverage, even if it is a web-only article. The Rev. James A. Forbes Jr. is working to have Christian ideals of social and moral justice (meaning non-exclusion of the voiceless and those with a non-mainstream lifestyle, nationality or class) and is taking a stance on the national stage to try to influence both major parties as we come up to the election.

It’s interesting though, and something I’ve been battling with for some time – how is it that so many different religious groups can believe such wildly divergent things? I was speaking with Emma about it, and of course there’s the interpretation of the Bible/other holy text take, for example the “love thy neighbor” idea which is in most major religions. It can be interpreted so many ways – is your neighbor only the person who believes the same thing as you, or looks like you or speaks like you? And by “loving” this person, does that mean giving them food when they are homeless, or trying to build a country where they have opportunity, or trying to convert them, or persuading them not to be gay?

But then there’s a further point which Em and I didn’t discuss at the time, which is more perplexing to me. If indeed the Bible is the word of God, or even the word inspired by God, how come it is so open to different interpretations and misinterpretations? How could God allow that? And how come so many people so fervently believe that the same God is supportive of their particular view?

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