Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Riddles in the Bible

Today is day three of our fifteenth week, reading the Bible through in a year.  Our scriptures today are: Judges 12-16; Luke 24; Psalm 146.

In our Judges passage, Samson throws a seven-day feast and bets his guests that they can't guess his riddle.  If he wins, they will each give him a garment, but if they win, he will give each of them a garment. The riddle, given in 14:14, is as follows:

“Out of the eater came something to eat.
Out of the strong came something sweet.”

After some deceit, his guests guess his riddle.  (It's not really a guess, because they have been told the answer:  honey from the carcass of a lion.)

After reading this, I began to wonder, are there any other riddles in the Bible?  I looked, and found this other one:

Three things are never satisfied;
    four never say, “Enough”:
16 Sheol, the barren womb,
    the land never satisfied with water,
    and the fire that never says, “Enough.”

(Proverbs 30:15-16)

In Psalm 78:-14, the psalmist writes:

Give ear, O my people, to my teaching;
    incline your ears to the words of my mouth!
I will open my mouth in a parable;
    I will utter dark sayings from of old,
things that we have heard and known,
    that our fathers have told us.
We will not hide them from their children,
    but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
    and the wonders that he has done.

While there are riddles in the Bible, I thank God that the Bible isn't a riddle!  It's not given to us as something with mysteries to unlock, but as instruction for our souls.  God doesn't hide its meaning from us, but delights in revealing Himself to His children.  And God calls us to instruct our own children about the truth of His Word.  Just as God has made His truth available to you, I hope you will be about the task of making God's Word understandable to others.

I pray that God will enlighten your eyes today, and give you an opportunity to share that truth with others.


Anonymous said...

Howdy Greg
happened across your site when searching for the places in the bible where the wored riddle appears. I acnt help but note where you have said that The Lord God does not hide or make secret anything from us.
I'm not sure if you have read the entire bible but I have read passages that seem to be saying the opposite of what you are say. There are mysteries, and only deciples will be able to descern certain sayings. My hunch is that the verse that says: many a\hear the call but few are chosen seems to be highlighting the point I made above.

Greg said...

Thank you for your comment. If you will read again, you'll find that I didn't write that God never hides or make secret anything from us. What I said was that while the Bible contains mysteries, the Bible itself is not a mystery. While there are unclear passages that God reveals to seek the Truth, the overall message of the Bible is clear to anyone who reads it. This is because God wants to reveal Himself to all who come to Him with a childlike faith.

Proverbs 25.2 (NIV) says, "It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings." This means that within the Bible, there are mysteries that we should seek out. It does not, however, mean that the message of the Bible itself is hidden. In this article, I was expressing the Bible's overall clarity. I never intended to communicate that there are no mysteries at all in the Bible.

Thanks again, and may God bless you.