11 September, 2010

Why the Offense?

Have you read your Bible in public lately? I have, and I've noticed something. You get some pretty strange looks, and if you listen, comments. In fact, I have had people come up and ask me why I felt it was necessary to read "that book" in a public place, as if my reading it in some way infringed upon their rights.  Honestly, I don't often carry my Bible with me, as I have it on my computer and it is just much easier to use the computer with my studies. But from time to time, I take along one of my study Bibles, or sometimes if I just want to read I carry my Bible. And lately, since the woman was so offended that I dared to read my Bible in a public place, I've been carrying it a bit more, and trying to observe people's reactions. In fairness, there was on elderly couple that came over to where I was sitting and commented to me about how "refreshing" it was to see someone taking time to read the Bible. And by no means am I trying to say that everyone, not even most, were annoyed if they saw me reading. But certainly there were a good number of folks that it bothered.

I actually decided to experiment a bit, and purposely went out to read my Bible in several locations and watch for how people reacted. I noticed a funny thing. I could go to places where I have normally gone, and if my Bible was laying open on the table, not really readying, but just open, people were much less likely to speak to me. They would sure look though, and one time I heard people a couple tables away make comments about how the hated it when people tried to force their religion on others.  How, pray tell, is my quietly reading my Bible in a public place, forcing my religion on anyone?  In that same shop there were several other people reading, but it sure did not seem to bother anyone. The world says we Christians are intolerant and pushy, but it would sure seem to me that it is the other way around when the simple act of sitting quietly at a table and reading the Bible is causing offense.

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