But for those who say it is outdated and culture has moved on and the Bible people need to get with the times, they could not be more incorrect. Man's sinful nature means that since the Fall from grace in the Garden of Eden, man has made the same sinful mistakes he always has. Man is the same, and so is his sin. That means culture is the same, and so are its sins. Exhibit A:
Thom Miller of Mansfield Ohio.
Miller claims to have been an enforcer for the Mafia in Cleveland. He also told a newspaper in 2003 that he had been shot three times, jailed more than 20 times and fathered 12 children with five different women. In 1991, Miller was sent to prison for stabbing a man during a bar fight. (source)Sounds like a sinful man, a sinner just like the rest of us. However, Mr Miller's story continues-
While in prison, he stole a bible and found God. ... Miller was released from Prison after serving seven years. (source)A man who is regenerated by the grace of God and living a holy life with the indwelling Holy Spirit is a story that never gets old, it is beautiful every time. How great! I wish his story had a happier ending. But Mr Miller's story is just beginning and his is the story of sin, which gets old very fast.
Mr Miller married and he became an ordained minister. He has a church in Mansfield, Ohio and runs a prison ministry.
The man apparently has no training or seminary experience, no authority over him to call him to account, or any brotherhood denomination out of which he has been called. He is simply a man who started a church. And this is OK too, though fraught with satanic snares and dangers. We saw that kind of mentality ("I don't know what to do with my life. I know, I'll start a church!" with Mr Mark Driscoll. Unattached men who aren't trained up by the leaders, pastors, or teachers and grown in the faith while submitted to a ministry and laid hands upon, often turn rogue. And that old sin-nature reared up and bit Mr Miller. Mr Miller decided one day that he wanted two wives. And he got a second wife, with the alleged blessing of his current wife. Mr Miller is 60 years of age, and his new wife is a teenager. Miller says,
"I don't preach about polygamy but I feel it is a very Christian lifestyle."Polygamy appears in the Bible but it is not condoned in the bible as an acceptable lifestyle. The reason is that the two partners become one flesh, and it's hard for two to become one while there are three. Genesis 2:24 depicts the scene where God made Eve, and told Adam and Eve that
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
This is very interesting because when God made Eve and joined Adam and Eve together in a holy union, there were not any mothers and fathers yet. They didn't exist. By this verse though, we see that God intended for one man and one woman to marry, have children, and then to repeat the cycle of leaving and cleaving to one another in successive generations of unions. That is the Christian lifestyle, because it is a family structure that is ordained by God.
However that old sin nature reared itself and another man in the long-ago history woke up one day and decided he wanted two wives as well. This happened n Genesis 4, the chapter immediately after the Fall! See? It is a very old story! Who says the Bible is outdated!
And Lamech took two wives. The name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.
Mr Miller says that of his wives,
There have been arguments in the past and at times there can be flares of jealousy but we manage to make it work.Rachel and Leah were two wives of the same man- Jacob. The women engaged in a bitter and long-term child-bearing competition, oftentimes with the husband as their "prize." The envy and jealousy polluted the entire family.
When Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, she envied her sister. She said to Jacob, “Give me children, or I shall die!" (Genesis 30:1). ... When Jacob came from the field in the evening, Leah went out to meet him and said, “You must come in to me, for I have hired you with my son's mandrakes.” So he lay with her that night. (Genesis 30:16).
Polygamy, envy, jealousy and family "flare-ups" are as old as man himself. Mr Miller's words nearly identically replicate these scenes from the Bible. All of which describe sin, and do not not a "very Christian lifestyle". What Miller is doing is living a life of hellish rebellion and picking out biblical things that sort of match how he wants to live. Here, Mr Miller's words replicate Judges 21:25,
In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.
Miller is just doing right in his own eyes, inventing lifestyles and piggybacking God into it rather than how it's supposed to be done, read and understand God's word, and obey it. The worst part of this problem is that Miller claims to be a pastor. Of course he is not, living in flagrant sin as he is, and having no knowledge of the true statutes of God. But he claims to speak for Christianity, which means he is claiming to speak for Jesus. This is a blasphemous perversion of the faith.
Culturally, Miller's next words replicate Romans 1:32,
Though they know God's righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.
Practicing such things as homosexuality, Miller says,
"I have no problem with homosexuals but I think it's wrong that their marriage is now recognized by the state but my second marriage is not. "I'm going to try and fight the bigotry of that - this is America and my wives and I have the right to live anyway we please - providing we're not hurting anybody." (source)Not hurting anybody? You're hurting Jesus. His name, His faith, His church. No, we do not have the right to live any way we please. We have the responsibility to live as God demands.
And we knew it was only a matter of time after last June's Supreme Court opinion stating that any homosexual or lesbian American has the right to marry. Once we drift from the God-ordained definition of marriage, all other definitions are allowed.
But back to the Bible. It is as fresh as the morning dew, recording the age-old sins of man.
If Mr Miller repented of living his NON-Christian lifestyle and of blaspheming Jesus and twisting His faith into a perverse license to sin, he too would go to heaven. Jesus would welcome him with open arms. All sins can be forgiven, except for the one sin that cannot be forgiven- that of dying without repenting and claiming Jesus as Savior before one draws his last breath.
Fortunately the Bible also records the story of redemption, and how Jesus who is God, incarnated into a baby, was birthed as a full human, lived and entirely sinless life, was sacrificed for us for our sins, and was entombed. On the third day He rose again, God being pleased with His Son's sacrifice. His shed blood means when we repent of our sins and believe on Jesus as Lord and Savior, we have a righteous door through which to enter heaven, possessing no righteousness of our own. Thank the LORD He made a way and sent the Lord to save us sinners!