Before I chastise anyone for being a “Bible Thumper,” I should at least confess to having been one. Not that I’ve ever been overtly religious but somehow as a child I became fond of “the good book.” Today two copies of it sit beside my desk because I refer to it regularly for ancient history, genealogical research and inspiration.
My father was born and raised in the south and the religion of his family was Baptist. As a child and teenager he attended (quite fondly), what my mother called “revivals.” I have not been to a good old-fashioned southern revival. Out west where I live, revivals have been recycled into rock music festivals where free-spirited people gather in natural settings and occasionally mention the “L” word (LORD) in their songs.
What’s a “Bible Thumper?” It is someone who is constantly preaching about anything and everything and relating it to the Bible. They believe that the Bible is perfect and that we should all live by its words. As I grew into adulthood and listened to scholars, I began to understand the importance of the Bible as an anthology. If it were music, it would be an album. Let’s say the Bible album held twelve songs. Those songs were written by different people and collected at different times. The Bible is very diverse and regularly contradicts itself.
Do I believe in God? Yes I do. Very much, and it brings me great joy. But as I get older, the more I simplify my spiritual beliefs the more joy I experience. I guess I just rejoice in all that is beautiful. I believe that was what Jesus was trying to say. We are all the sons and daughters of God and for that, we should rejoice. Jesus warned us not to worship him. He was like a parent telling his children to go into the world and accept their inheritance… the joy of being the children of God.
Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy – A How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy II – Uncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors and Secret Genealogy III – From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians. Available here:
Secret Genealogy II: http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-II-Christian-Ancestors/dp/1484053222
Secret Genealogy III: http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-III-Jewish-Anglo-Saxon-Acadians/dp/148407579X
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