Weird Reading

By Joell Haugan

Throughout history, various cultural issues have created forces that made people reinterpret the Bible in goofy ways. For example, the Crusades had people quoting scripture in ways that made it sound right to kill your enemies instead of loving them.

Prohibition in the US caused preachers to preach that the Bible taught abstinence, in spite of the fact that Jesus Himself made wine. And slave owners in the south often heard teachers teaching that the Bible taught that blacks were inferior, in spite of the clear and obvious Bible teaching that all humans are created equal and are endowed with the image of God.
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For each of these “re-readings” of scripture, it took only time for the historical and clearly taught truths taught in scripture to re-assert themselves.  Whenever we impose a cultural shift on scripture, it leads to weirdness.

So, don’t panic when someone comes along with another weird reading of scripture. Time and good scholarship will prevail. And, the Word Of God can withstand the test of time!

Joell Haugan
Heartland Regional Church Planting Director

This article is a repost from Joell’s pastoral blog at

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