In the Wrong Hands

A history teacher at Hillsdale College made an interesting observation about weapons of war. A certain culture invents a weapon, then an enemy gets hold of it and uses it. The atomic bomb was created here, but soon the Soviet Union was manufacturing nuclear warheads and trying to intimidate us with them. Now there is talk of nuclear weapons in Iran. Using an enemy’s weapon against him is as familiar as American Indians using rifles against the Cavalry.

The most powerful weapon of Christians is the Bible. It is the sword of the Spirit which is living, powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword (Eph. 6:17; Heb. 4:12). The devil knows its power. That is why he tried to use it against Jesus (Matt. 4:6). But Satan mishandled this fearsome weapon. He tried to use it for something it was not designed to do. The Scripture he quoted (Psa. 91:11-12), was not meant to be a promise of protection for someone who decided to jump off a building. The devil tried to turn the Bible on Jesus by pitting Scripture against Scripture, but Jesus exposed this enemy abuse of the weapon and rebuked him.

We have argued for years that prophecy is one of the proofs of the inspiration of the Bible. This weapon has been useful against atheists and agnostics. But other religions have tried to hijack this weapon and use it against us. Muslims try to say there are predictions in the Quran that have come true and prove it is inspired. These “prophecies” include the prediction that Islam would overcome other religions and that the Quran would never be destroyed! Mormons say Joseph Smith was inspired because he predicted that the Civil War would begin with the rebellion of South Carolina, an event anyone could have known by reading newspapers in the decades leading up to this conflict. These predictions are not even in the same league as the amazing prophecies of the Bible which were written hundreds of years before the events they predicted occurred and were fulfilled in specific detail in those events.

Sometimes governments, pretending to be friends of Christians and guardians of truth, use this weapon to control or even oppress citizens, especially Christians. When Galileo proposed that the earth revolved around the sun instead of vice-versa, Catholic authorities had him tried and placed under house arrest for the rest of his life. Why did they do this and what was their basis for such harsh action? They used passages like Matthew 5:45, which says God makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good. If the Bible says the sun rises, they argued, then it must be moving and the earth must be standing still. For centuries the Catholic Church, working through European governments under its sway, persecuted Christian people who disagreed with its teaching. By turning their twisted interpretations of the Bible against true Christians, they put to death these “heretics.”

False teachers try to use the Bible against the church. They quote Scriptures out of context to say baptism is not necessary, that a child of God cannot fall, that everybody is going to heaven, and even that same-sex relations are morally right. But, when they twist the Scriptures and misuse the weapon God gave, they do so to their own destruction (II Pet. 3:16).

Kerry

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