- Matthew 10:39
The Bible is full of paradoxes.
Christian philosopher Gordon H. Clark once defined a paradox as a "charley horse between the ears."
Paradoxes can be mentally straining and downright confusing.
But what a paradox is not…is a contradiction.
Throughout history, the Word of God has constantly been scrutinized.
And no scrutiny has been more significant than the scrutiny of contradiction: people argue that the word of God contradicts itself; thus, it cannot be true.
Take Jesus' words this morning "He who loses his life for My sake will find it."
On the surface, this looks and sounds very much like self-contradiction.
How can someone lose something and yet, at the same time, find the very thing he lost?
This is where understanding paradox helps. The word paradox comes from the Greek root and means "to seem or appear."
Paradoxes can be confusing because they appear to be contradictions. Yet, if we look intently, we can find answers.
In Matthew 10:39, Jesus is using a paradox; Jesus means that someone losing his life in one sense will find his life in another sense.
Jesus is speaking of losing on the one hand and saving on the other.
Because losing and saving are not a contradiction, neither are His words.
I am a father to my four children. I also have a father, which makes me a son.
As I write this, I am simultaneously both a father and a son. Contradiction? Absolutely not; these two things, being a father and being a son, are different in context.
Be on guard against those who argue the Bible contradicts itself.
Is the Bible mysterious? Yes. There are mysteries in scripture that are far above our understanding (Isaiah 55:8-9).
We will never know these answers this side of Heaven.
But the Bible never contradicts itself.
God is not a God of confusion.
Praise be to God that God reveals most of the Bible to us with time! With diligent work and godly patience, we can know Him deeply.
Your prayer this morning, "Lord make the hard things plain. Give me the head of a theologian and the heart of a missionary."
Paper Sunday is blessed to collaborate with Chris Harper on today's devotional!
Chris Harper is a speaker, writer, and disciple-maker. Chris is President of 252Edu, a consulting firm based in Dallas, Texas. Chris serves schools, churches, and non-profits by helping them "grow in wisdom, favor and stature with God and man.”
When not taking ground for King Jesus, you can find Chris on the basketball court playing a pick-up game. Chris is a sneakerhead, an avid reader, and loves a good cheeseburger. You can follow him @252consulting on Instagram.