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The true search

From the March 2007 issue of The Christian Science Journal

"YOU CAN FIND JUSTIFICATION FOR ALMOST ANYTHING IN THE BIBLE." We've all probably heard this line more than once. You have to admit, it can be tempting to look for Biblical verses to justify our thoughts and behavior, rather than bringing an open mind to Bible reading. It seems human nature to want our opinions to be correct—especially on matters of such depth and importance as God and the Bible.

Yet most us would have to agree that seeking justification for what we say and do is not really the point of reading the Bible. Rather, we should be willing to check ourselves against everything that the Bible itself teaches. After all, when we bring preconceived opinions to any kind of study—Bible study included—we rob ourselves of seeing the full import of the message. I've found that when I bring a more humble, less self—righteous approach to Bible reading, this change in attitude helps me in my search for truth and inspiration.

The New Testament mentions strict religious observers who used the Hebrew Scriptures to justify their own opinions. Known by such names as Pharisees, scribes, and chief priests, some of these individuals challenged Jesus because they thought he didn't know the Scriptures and that they were the experts. Yet Jesus directed his command "Search the scriptures" to these very people to help them see that the Scriptures conveyed a more inspired message than they were expressing.

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