All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. 2 Timothy 3:16
What language does God speak?
That question was the beginning of a joke that was going around long ago, back when I was in seminary. According to the joke, one old farmer said, "God speaks German." When the farmer was asked how he knew, he took out his Bible and pointed to Genesis 3:9 where it says God went looking for the hiding Adam and asked, "Adam, wo bist du?" ("Adam, where are you?")
I didn't say it was a funny joke.
Now here's something even unfunnier. On Halloween, a North Carolina pastor brought his congregation, Amazing Grace Baptist Church, together to burn heretical books.
Sadly, Pastor Mark Grizzard put many versions of the Bible at the top of the banned book list.
According to Pastor Grizzard, the King James Version of the Bible is the only true Word of God and all other versions are perverted and satanic. Indeed, he believes only the King James Version is God's preserved, inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God for English-speaking people.
Now I like the King James as much as the next person. It was from the KJV I memorized Scripture, and it will be part of me until I die. Even more, there are verses -- like those of Psalm 23 -- which feel comfortable only when I say them in the King James Version.
Still, we need to be careful.
Personal preference for a translation is a long way from claiming one-of-a-kind divine verbal inspiration for that translation.
Rather than making the news for the burning of the Bible, I would prefer to see Pastor Grizzard, along with all of God's people, claim the headlines because they were living the Word.
Before you write to me, let me say, "Yes, I know, we don't do good so we can get recognition from the world. We don't." On the other hand, if the Savior's redeemed people spent an entire day showing their appreciation for the Savior's sacrifice, I have to think the world would take notice. I pray they would.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, fill our hearts with an appreciation of the Savior's sacrifice and a desire to share His story with the lost. May our witness avoid the burning of the Word and include lifting high Jesus' cross. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries