Can I tell you a secret?
There are lots of truths in the Bible that are overlooked or misunderstood. While I don't pretend to have all the answers, by any means, I have learned enough to realize that there is a gigantic need to share and teach these truths.
In fact, I am convinced that if a person understands these things, they can:
- significantly deepen their relationship with GOD,
- more clearly and thoroughly understand the message of the Bible, and
- spot the many instances where a misunderstanding of these truths has led—and continues to lead—to doctrinal errors, unnecessary confusion, and even division among believers.
Before we dive in:
- My intent is to grab your attention, perhaps raise an eyebrow, and, ultimately, to cause the true seekers to investigate the claims.
- The structure is intentionally concise.
- This post accompanies the development of my Biblical Principles library. I intend to update this post periodically as the Principles are fleshed out.
Shocking Biblical Truths
Truth #1: The Bible you use isn't accurate.
Most English Bibles, as far back as the King James Version (KJV), source the Old Testament from Hebrew manuscripts called the Masoretic Text (MT). When you look up passages from the Old Testament which are quoted in the New Testament, they only match about 50% of the time. Instead, you should be using this Bible.
Truth #2: The Bible wasn't written to you.
The Bible is a collection of writings that Christians believe were inspired by the Holy Spirit. These writings were penned by numerous men over the span of about 1,500 years. The writings were written to specific people at specific times for specific purposes.
Instead of thinking of the Bible as a single book, we should think of it as a collection of writings, many of which were letters. (I tend to prefer the term "Scriptures" over "the Bible" because it helps me remember this truth.) The Bible was not written to you and me; the Bible has been preserved for you and me.
Truth #3: Most people misunderstand and misuse the Bible.
A majority of the time, when people quote the Bible, they claim it is saying something it isn't. In most cases, this is done without realization, out of ignorance. One of the most common misuses is to snip some verse that sounds good or fits a particular thought or emotion and apply it to a current situation as though that's exactly what GOD meant it for. This is often done with passages like Jeremiah 29:11, Isaiah 40:31, and Philippians 4:13.
The main reason the Bible gets misused is because the one quoting fails to first identify the passage's meaning to the original recipients. I call this the Primary Audience Principle. If you want to use Scripture correctly, you must follow it.
Truth #4: The Bible does not teach monotheism.
Monotheism means the belief that there is only one god. While the Bible affirms that there is no equal to GOD, the Bible does teach the existence of numerous "gods."
Truth #5: In the Bible, "the heavens" referred to angels and all heavenly creatures.
In the beginning, GOD created everything in heaven and on earth. That includes the heavenly creatures such as the angels. The lights in the heavens were initially living creatures. The terms angels, stars, heavens, heavenly hosts, gods, rulers, and sons of God are synonymous terms that refer to GOD's heavenly creatures.
Truth #6: The Hebrew word translated "god" or "God" (elohim) simply means a spirit being.
In the Hebrew Old Testament, the word elohim, which often refers to Jehovah, is also used to refer to others, including: the gods of Egypt (see Exodus 12:12); other gods (see Exodus 18:9-11; Deuteronomy 10:17); man-made, lifeless idols (see Genesis 35:1-4); and deceased Samuel's spirit rising from Hades (see 1 Samuel 28:12-13). Go here to learn more.
Truth #7: Certain angels married, had sex with, and bore children by human women.
The Bible teaches that, early into human history, a subset of angels left their realm and chose an earthly life because of their attraction to human women. This had disastrous consequences.
Truth #8: These original half-angelic, half-human Nephilim were very wicked demigods.
When the angels married human women, the DNA of their children was corrupt. Among other things, these children were abnormally large and strong giants with violent tendencies. These Nephilim rapidly increased the evil on earth and contributed significantly towards GOD's decision to flood the world.
Truth #9: GOD flooded the world to eliminate the corruption of the original Nephilim.
Why did GOD flood the whole world in Noah's day? Yes, of course, it was because of the spread of evil. But when you look more closely, GOD wanted to purge creation of these half-angelic Nephilim and their weapons of war. When you understand the role that the Nephilim played in the wickedness of the first world, you can better appreciate why the flood was necessary and why Peter stated (see 1 Peter 3:20) that Noah was saved by means of the floodwaters, as opposed to being saved from the floodwaters (which is also true).
Truth #10: The Bible speaks of three worlds.
The first world was from creation through the flood. The second world runs from the Tower of Babel until Jesus' second coming. The Bible was written during the existence of the second world. The third world is after the great judgment, including the existence of the new heavens and earth.
Truth #11: GOD assigned angels over each nation. They were that nation's gods.
The gods of the ancient nations were real, not imaginary. At the Tower of Babel, when GOD divided the nations, He placed specific angels over each nation, except Israel, whom GOD kept for His own special people. The term gods is often used in the Bible to refer to angels and other heavenly creatures. (Reading from the Septuagint makes this truth more obvious and apparent, whereas the Hebrew MT masks and hides it.)
Truth #12: Faith doesn’t mean belief.
One of the most common myths among Christians and believers is that faith means to believe in something. The problem isn't that this statement is false. The problem is that it's only partially true.
In the Bible, faith means action that arises out of belief. Biblical faith is not just belief, but belief accompanied by action prompted by that belief.