Thursday, December 20, 2012

Biblical Abuse

This is one of my more recent poems. It probably is not great poetry, simply a poetic attempt to express something inside of me. My intent is not to offend, but to protest the sloppy and condescending use of the word biblical. This powerful adjective is frequently used to modify a perspective in a way that says, "My view is 'biblical' and, therefore, represents God's side over against any other perspective." The problem is that EVERY interpretation of the Bible is just that, an INTERPRETATION. There is no such thing as THE biblical view of anything (my view included). Everything is interpreted.


I’m beginning to hate the word biblical
When it is used as an adjective
To justify shallow dogma.
biblical lifestyle
biblical counseling
biblical marriage
biblical dating
biblical weight loss
biblical womanhood
biblical manhood
biblical illusions, all.

I hate the word biblical.
It isn’t the Bible that I hate.
I love her stories, myths, parables, and legends
That disclose the messiness of human life
And seek to understand
God’s involvement in the mess.

But I hate the word biblical
Presumptuously describing
What “should” be
When we all know that the “should”
Is falsely absolutized
Constructed of
Self-righteous illusion