Human Fingerprints

Currently listening to: Peregrine by The Appleseed Cast

The Bible is powerful because it is human.  Its power is found in the fact that its authors were like me:  limited, uncertain, struggling.  They did not have easy answers from on high, they could not tell the future, and they did not have a God’s-view picture of life or the world.  They, like me, were pilgrims on the road toward Mystery, vainly searching for words big enough to describe their experiences of divinity but always falling short.  It is in their struggle, in their doubt that we may find ourselves, our own journey, and our own battles to grasp the Infinite.

It is the human fingerprints which give the Bible its spiritual potency; to make it a timeless, perfect spiritual authority is to rob its authors of their voice, to ignore the humanity of their stories, and to deny our own place in the text.  To claim it was “co-authored” by God as an infallible storehouse of truth does not make it a more powerful book; it is to reject its humanity, to deny the real struggle its authors had in seeking out the answers they give, and to make it wholly distinct and inconsequential to the spiritual journeys of the rest of us (who get no such easy answers in life).

The Bible is not a timeless authority for religious and moral life; it is a human record of the individual and corporate search for meaning, for God.  And it is powerful precisely because of its humanity, not in spite of it.


~ by eternaldode on 10 September 2009.

One Response to “Human Fingerprints”

  1. So succinctly and logically said. Thank you. I have been writing about Biblical interpretation as it concerns the Christian and homosexuality. WordPress offered this post as a possibly related topic, and has restored my faith in tags and automation. Your point is dead on with what I was saying, but you said it in fewer words. I will send others. 🙂

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