December 10, 2009

Honebeaded Tismakes

When I was 17, I couldn't believe my Dad thought he was always right. When I was 21 (yes, ahead of the curve) it amazed me to realize that my Dad pretty much was always right. But it wasn't until I turned 33 that I grasped the whole truth in this case. My Dad only speaks up when he already knows that he's right.

As should be obvious to most readers, I don't have that same virtue. I mention this today because a blogging friend of mine got called out on a "bonehead mistake". If you don't know who I mean, you don't need to. If you saw the conversation, you know why I can't defend what he said. Friends don't need defending, anyway. But the right to make mistakes? That, often, does.

Sometimes guarding one's words is a pure power play. Sometimes misperceptions get instilled early about topics that just don't come up very often. Sometimes a person can be very good at certain aspects of something and get dismissed because a free tongue reveals ignorance about a related (though not insignificant) area.

In case you're not clear, that last paragraph was all about me. Jesus' disciples were belittled because of their Galilean accents. I'm sure one reason I don't make certain blogrolls is because my lack of acculturation comes out in dozens of ways I don't even notice. A fellow amateur at ETS laughed at my pronunciations, but at least he corrected them!

I still think I'm doing what I can to make some kind of progress (and hopefully, eventually, some contribution). Still, I wish I'd get called out more often.

The most painful lessons are often much more than valuable. They're often surprising, because they're past due.


M.P. said...

I don't know what mistake you're referring to here, and I really don't need to. But you're right abouts accents and culture and such. The Bible is God's gift to mankind, and not only officially recognized experts, but also the rest of us are called to do our best at understanding and following its message. And that definitely means that the things we don't know might show sometimes.

Keep the up the good work. And by the way, that's an excellent observation you make about a woman teaching or having authority over a man. I don't know for certain whether you're right, but it's definitely an interpretation sorely in need of discussion, and it's way more satisfactory than what seems to be a standard modern Christian response: that the Bible's just sorely outdated and we have to ignore parts of it.

Bill Heroman said...

Thanks for the good words, mbp.

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