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Sunday, June 16, 2019
BAGUIO

Fernando: The Bible

Paradigm

LAST Friday, the city culminated the celebration of National Bible Week with the theme “The Bible: Real Talk” with a parade followed by a short program in Malcolm Square attended by no less than Mayor Domogan.

All government offices sent their representatives to join the program. It was just so pleasing that the government gave importance to the significance of Bible to people’s lives.

We face a lot of problems today such as attacks on the Church, terrorism, political riffs, and election related-crimes, so it is only proper that we seek the counsel of God through the Bible.

With the different activities organized by all local governments, it is certain that members of the communities will gain positive orientation in reading the Bible.

The Bible has given hope to a lot of lives. Saint Augustine in his adolescence has abandoned his Christian faith and was known to have a loose life. He was known to be a sinner, not just an ordinary sinner. He changed his bad ways, accordingly, after reading about the life of St. Anthony and after hearing an inner voice telling him to take up Bible and read. We have many witnesses today telling how they experience life renewal after reading the Bible.

Organized by the Baguio City Character Council and the Christian Ecumenical council, government employees including students from the Department of Education joined the parade. It was a simple gesture but I think it has left a lasting impression to the community especially today wherein chaos is everywhere. I was lucky to be there.

In La Trinidad, they have series of activities to celebrate the National Bible Week. Posted outside a local church were the schedule of these activities such as the Ecumenical Thanksgiving and Fun Run on January 26, Prayer Rally on January 27, Bible Sharing on January 28, Bible distributions on January 29 and 30, Bible Quiz and Slogan Making contest in the morning and Bible musicale in the evening of January 31, 2019. La Trinidad had filled the entire week with activities showing their active participation on the celebration. If all local governments continue to show strong support to this Bible Week celebration, the more people will be encouraged to read the Bible.

One thing to know about the Bible is that it isn’t a history book. Though it deals with dates, especially the Old Testament, the writing or the sequence of the books in the Bible is not based on history. Sometimes people question the truthfulness of many of the writings in the books because the dates seemed to conflict with historical events. The primary basis of writing the Bible was the faith of the writer and the people.

Inspired writers wrote these books as an expression of their faith or as an attestation of the love of God to humanity based on their experiences. For instance, the four recognized Gospels have different versions of many of the events involving the life of Christ. This differences were intended to suit their particular audiences or readers. The Gospel of Matthew was intended for the Christian Jews while the Gospel of Luke was intended for the non-Jew Christians hence the differences.

The Bible reminds as of the immense love of God to us. It is the Word of God because by reading it we feel the love and presence of God. How about stories of hate, war, and conflicts in the Bible, do they represent the love of God? Various religions have their own ways of explaining these events. Yet again, we can only relate to particular events if these events are based on human experiences. The writers were writing based on the context in that particular period.

The priest last Sunday said echoing a writer’s words, “Get the Bible, read the Bible, love the Bible, and live the Bible.” One should not study the Bible for debate purposes. Studying or reading the Bible should promote love and solidarity and not the cause of division among us. There are many of us who read the Bible for academic purposes. I do not see anything wrong with it as long as the knowledge gained is applied. We read the Bible because we want to know God more and by knowing God more, we follow His commandments and try to imitate His ways.


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