Sometimes when I am booked for radio shows, I am introduced as Theology Expert (or Bible Expert), Beth Misner. I have had multiple conversations with my husband, Ivan, about this, because it always makes me uncomfortable. Although I have two degrees in theology, I have never viewed myself as an expert. If anything, my study has shown me just how much I do NOT know, without a doubt!
I used to seek knowledge to gain understanding. Lately I have been coming to see that the pursuit of knowledge leads to even more questions! There is a passage in Ecclesiastes which says, “But, my child, let me give you some further advice: Be careful, for writing books is endless, and much study wears you out.” Can you relate to this? Maybe you can – I know I can.
There are big questions in life, questions such as, “Why does a good God allow horrible things to happen?” and “What will it be like when I die?” These are questions for which, no matter how you interpret Scripture, there are no definitive answers in the Bible. I have seen some Olympic-gold-medal-worthy mental and hermeneutic gymnastics to come to certain conclusions. And then the “other side” does an equally impressive gymnastic routine to come to the exact opposite conclusion. Often each opposing viewpoint’s adherents claim “divine revelation” to come to the answer they reach.
It makes me wonder — is having the answer to every big question in life necessary for me to experience deep inner peace and to live a life centered in love? Some would say there is only one answer which is necessary. I’m inclined to agree. And that leaves me with more questions than answers, but also with contentment, peace, and confidence that most theology experts may not experience.
I’m happy with the peace.