Because this is an article in an Answers in Genesis publication, some readers might answer by saying that Darwin’s On the Origin of the Species is the most dangerous book.
Certainly Darwin popularized a philosophy that has permeated the world and has become the foundation for all sorts of evil thinking. For example, Darwinian evolution fueled racist ideas—Hitler used evolution as a so-called “scientific” justification for his racist attitudes. Scientists ordered the killing of many Australian Aborigines to be collected as museum specimens—all in the name of evolution.
And it is true that when someone believes there is no God and is convinced that life can be explained by natural processes alone, as portrayed in Darwin’s book, then the worldview built on that belief of origins reflects such an atheistic philosophy. Morality, then, would be relative, for such a person believes there is no absolute authority. Thus “right” and “wrong” would also be relative.
Such a philosophy has been practically applied in Marxism—resulting in the death of millions of people under Stalin and others. Yes, Darwin penned a dangerous book and idea—but Darwin’s book is not the most dangerous today.
Because of the events of September 11, some people might claim that the Koran is the most dangerous book. The terrorists who perpetrated these evil acts, and others in the terrorist network worldwide, claim they are only carrying out what they believe the Koran instructs them to do. After all, they say, the Koran states “…then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem; but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them…” (9:5).
Also: “…I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: Smite ye above their necks and smite all their fingertips off them” (8:12).
Now, many Muslims would claim that the terrorists are incorrectly understanding the Koran—but it is true that in every Muslim-dominated country, Christians are not allowed full freedom of worship. Islam is reportedly the fastest-growing religion in the world—but the Muslim God is not the God of the Bible. Certainly, the Koran is a dangerous book, for millions have been led into a false religion—but it is not the world’s most dangerous book today.
I don’t want to be misunderstood here, but I propose that the most dangerous book in the world is in fact…the Bible.
Consider what Peter states in 2 Peter 3:15-16. He said that Paul had written his epistles with the wisdom that God gave him, including “some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest [distort], as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.”
As the Bible is the Word of God, it is a Divine Book, and it is the greatest Book. And because of this, if we misread it, we can, as Peter states, distort it to our own destruction.
For instance, Peter was referring to misunderstandings some people had concerning the teachings of the Apostle Paul. In the book of Romans, Paul says that some were slandering him concerning his teaching of justification by faith. Some falsely claimed that because we are justified by faith, Paul taught that we can sin as much as we like! In Corinthians, Paul warns that some people claimed the resurrection which he spoke of as in the future, had already happened. And in Thessalonians, Paul tells us that some had claimed he had taught that the Day of the Lord had already come.
Peter explains that these people were all “wresting,” or distorting, the Scriptures to their own destruction.
Because the Bible is a revelation from God explaining who we are, where we came from, our sinful state, our need of salvation, how to be saved, the future judgment and so on, if people misread it, they distort the Scriptures to their own destruction.
Think about this—cults such as the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses quote the Bible, but they misread it, thus distorting it to their own destruction. Orthodox Jews quote the Old Testament—but again, they distort it to their own destruction as they reject Jesus as the Messiah (who is foretold and explained in the Old Testament).
Because the Bible explains the only way to be saved (“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved”—Romans 10:9), it is the most dangerous book—if its message is not believed. After all, if its message of salvation is not obeyed, then this will lead to a person’s destruction. The Bible warns that those who don’t trust in Christ for salvation will be separated from God for eternity in Hell.
AiG is a ministry that is not just dealing with the creation/evolution issue, but is challenging the world—and the church—to believe God’s Word from the beginning. Sadly, because there is so much compromise with billions of years and evolutionary ideas in the church, generations have been taught to misread the Bible. The more this has happened, the more the Bible’s teaching is distorted to their own destruction, as increasing numbers in the younger generations no longer have a respect for the Bible.
One of the major messages of AiG is that we should not misread God’s Word and make it conform to the world’s (or our own) ideas and theories. We must come to the Scriptures with a spirit of humility and let God speak to us through His Word—and not “wrest” the Scriptures to our own destruction.
“And fear not them who kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).
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