When it comes to the Bible, we’ve all got a choice to make. We can take the Bible on our terms, or on its terms. We can choose to follow it some of the way, or we can choose to follow it all the way. We can dabble in it, or we can dive deep into it. At some point we have to choose.
Many people choose to relate to the Bible like a map that offers a route, but not the route to their destination. They’ll follow it some of the way, but for at least part of the journey take what looks like an easier path. Many people choose to relate to the Bible like one item at a buffet. They’ll put a bit of Bible on their plate, then also a bit of this and a bit of that. But as time goes by and I continue to live out my little life in this world, I become more and more convinced that there’s nothing better than to go all-in with the Bible. I’ve come to realize I’m so all-in that if the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong. In fact, if the Bible is wrong, I’m so wrong, completely wrong, shamefully wrong, devastatingly wrong, and wrong about all that really matters in life and death.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the origins of this world. The Bible tells me that it was created by God over the course of six days and not nearly as long ago as the millions of billions of years other people claim. This world, this universe, was made by God and for God, an incredible ex nihilo act of creative superiority.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the origins of humanity. The Bible tells me that the first two human beings were created by God and placed on this earth as complete, grown human beings, not that they evolved slowly from lesser organisms. They were created in the image of God as the crown of God’s creation.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the purpose of humanity. The Bible tells me that mankind was put on this earth to bring glory to God. We exist to do good for others which in turn shines a spotlight on our ultimately good God. This stands in the face of a mission of personal empowerment or human achievement.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the purpose of family. The Bible tells me that marriage exists to serve as a miniature of the relationship of God to his people through the complementarity of husband and wife. It tells me that marriage exists as the context in which we have the responsibility to create more people who bear the image of God. Marriage is the founding of a new family and family is the building block of society.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the great problem and the great need of human beings. The Bible tells me our great problem is that we’ve sinned against a holy God, become rebels against him, and desperately need reconciliation. We are not good people who make the occasional poor choice, not innocent people who sometimes act ignorantly, but evil people who hate God and our fellow man. Our great need is not self-esteem or tolerance or new forms of politics or economics, but the forgiveness that comes by grace through faith in Christ Jesus.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about the future. The Bible tells me that history will culminate in the return of Jesus Christ who will come to judge the living and the dead. The world will not end with ecological catastrophe or nuclear holocaust, but with the re-appearance of the glorious Christ. He will come as victorious King, as righteous Judge, to bring some to eternal glory and condemn others to eternal condemnation.
If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about today’s most pressing cultural issues: homosexuality, gay marriage, transgenderism, abortion, climate change. If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong about today’s most pressing theological issues: the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the nature of same-sex attraction, the authority and sufficiency of scripture. If the Bible is wrong, I’m wrong in how I relate to money, how I honor my body, how I use my time. I’m wrong over and over, again and again, through and through. I’m poor, pathetic, pitiable, and blind.
But I’ve made my choice. I’ve examined the evidence and have chosen to believe it’s not wrong, but right. I’ve chosen to believe it’s good and pure and true, infallible and inerrant and sufficient. I’ve chosen to take it on its own terms, to believe it all the way, to live by its every word. I’ve chosen to be in—all-in.