Fact Checker: Do Faithful Christians Take the Bible Literally?

bibleliterallymainOne of the things I enjoy most in my work at Focus on the Family is the opportunity to speak at secular university campuses and to organizations that are indifferent or opposed to orthodox Christianity. Most of my colleagues are sane enough to avoid such invitations, but I relish them because they allow me to mix with folks who see the world very differently and it's intellectually and rhetorically stimulating to interact with them in a meaningful way. I also get the opportunity to correct lots of misunderstandings about what Christians actually believe.

One of these common misunderstandings is not even presented as a question, but an assumption. It typically goes something like this: "So Mr. Stanton, taking a literal view of the Bible as you do, please explain to me ..."

I usually answer my questioner, to their great surprise: "Well no, I don't take the Bible literally." I then pause for effect, both for the sake of the non-faithful as well as for the Christians in the audience.

Reading the faces of the cynics in the audience like a book, I see that unmistakable gaze of, "Oh, what a pleasant surprise. He's not one of those."

Then I clear up the obvious confusion. "I don't take the Bible literally, but I do believe everything in the Bible as true."

[Read the rest of the article at The Gospel Coalition Blog.]