Many a believer in the religion of Christianity has asserted that the Bible cannot be understood by the heathen at large. They claim that you must be in the spirit to be able to grasp the word of God. The purpose of this post is to portray the ignorance of anyone who asserts that the Bible can only be understood while “in the spirit”.
“In the spirit”? What does that mean? On the website got Questions?org I found the following answer:
Believers have the Spirit of Christ, the hope of glory within them (Colossians 1:27). Those who walk in the Spirit will show forth daily, moment-by-moment holiness. This is brought about by consciously choosing by faith to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide in thought, word, and deed (Romans 6:11-14). Failure to rely on the Holy Spirit’s guidance will result in a believer not living up to the calling and standing that salvation provides (John 3:3; Ephesians 4:1; Philippians 1:27). We can know that we are walking in the Spirit if our lives are showing forth the fruit of the Spirit which is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22,23). Being filled (walking) with the Spirit is the same as allowing the word of Christ (the Bible) to richly dwell in us (Colossians 3:16).
It seems to me that to “walk in the spirit” implies that you must believe. If to “walk in the spirit” in order to understand the Bible is a necessity, what the believer is asserting is that you must believe to understand. After you reach the point of believing one assumes that you must already understand. How did you reach the point of belief without first having understanding? If you are seeking understanding in order to believe, according to the believer you have no hope of reaching your goal. You must believe, they insist, in order to understand. “Accept by faith” is sometimes the response I receive when I insist that they are delusional. Are they imploring you to accept something regardless of the fact that you do not understand it and instead recognize it as irrational?
What does it mean to “Accept by Faith”? Some say it is not faith without proof, but instead “trust without reservation.” Christians are very good at trying to change something into that which it is not, or changing something so it is obfuscated to the point of impossible discernment. In essence though, even “trust without reservation” is an advocation to throw yourself into belief without regard to reason. You must believe without reservation, without regard to reason, without thought. You must believe to believe. Do you trust everyone even if you do not understand or accept their motives?
So, what does it really mean, to those who choose to believe without reservation or “believe to believe”? It means accepting a set of doctrine without examining, without subjecting it to reason, and without question. Does it lead to enlightenment? Does it lead to understanding? It leads to vulnerability, and gullibility.
By insisting that you believe on faith without examining that faith with reason or logic Christianity is in effect transforming your mind into a moldable product, a clay, so to speak. Once successful in obtaining acquiescence for one or two absurd claims then acquiescence to even more outrageous claims will surely follow. Christians separate these thoughts by compartmentalization. While your logical mind will still function in the real world, that part of your mind belonging to belief will be tightly protected against any and all logical examination.
Such pseudo-transformations are even easier if the victim is under stress from many of life’s challenges. Like a predator that feeds on the weak it perceives in the herd, religion preys on the most vulnerable.