It is quite funny, or rather sad, that the people, my pastors and friends alike, who emphasized “exegesis” as a way to understanding God’s mind while they disputed my ‘mummy’s generation’s’ understanding of the scriptures along the lines of ‘covering the hair’, ‘wearing trousers’, ‘women holding leadership positions in the church’, ‘shouting Jesus seven times to end a prayer’, etc., now fight against the same exegesis when it comes to the argument against eternal salvation and other matters, such as tithing.
In those days, they told my mum that those scriptures that mention such must not be taken out of context, but must be read within the bounds of the audience, the culture, and the meaning of the words as they were used.
They were the ones who taught us to study the scriptures to context, but apparently, they didn’t expect the same exegesis to come back to question them.
Now that we have dared to study for ourselves, to details, to context, and dared to believe what we found…we have become heretic. Now they are saying ‘exegesis’ is not the only way to interpret the scriptures.
O sun mi o.
Which to me only sounds like: “Studying the scriptures to details and context is not the only way to understand the scriptures, but studying it loosely and out of context is also a good way to understand the scriptures”.
You see, the hypocrisy of religion has never been so scary to me as it is now.
An endless circle of insincerity, deception, and dishonesty, yet wrapped around God to make it valid.
Is it too much to ask our religious leaders to be sincere with us? We really don’t want them to be perfect, just to be sincere.
Is it too much to ask for accountability?
Is it too much, if they admit in areas they’ve been earlier wrong?
Is it too much?
Now, to my friends, who think the bible should no longer be interpreted to context, can you please, go back and apologize to my mum and her friends. Can you go back and tell them that because the phrase “shall not wear that which pertaineth unto man” appears in the bible, that all women who are putting on trousers are in sin? Or that 1 Cor 11:5 means a woman must cover her head if she is praying? That there’s no need to understand the scripture to context?
How come they used exegesis to explain the true meanings of these scriptures but now fight against the use of that same exegesis now that it is leading us deeper into what they handed over to us?
I understand that truth is hard.
I understand that change is difficult.
I understand that it comes with much responsibility.
I understand that character is tough.
I understand that sincerity takes a toll on ones social acceptance.
But please, decide what you want us to stand with:
1. The use of exegesis in studying all scriptures
2. Removal of exegesis completely from bible study
3. Selective use of exegesis as a tool for scriptural understanding
Exegesis: critical explanation or interpretation of a text, especially of scripture.
Synonyms: interpretation, explanation, exposition, explication, elucidation, clarification
With Love, and much Sadness.
Image Credits: Todd Quackenbush
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