Photo and Commentary ©2020 by Maylan Schurch
Friday and Sabbath, August 28 and 29, 2020
A couple of weeks ago, during a masked swoop through a used-book store, I spotted the sturdily-bound volume you see above. After a quick blink of surprise, I started wondering just who would need Household Bacteriology.
A few seconds’ search on the internet informed me that this book was first published in 1915 as a textbook for “students in domestic sciences.” I peeked inside, and saw a learned discussion of various types of mold, and the internet a segment from the book dealt with how to produce homemade vinegar.
My mom never had a copy of this book—she hated harmful bacteria, but waged war on it not by consulting scholarly research but by directly applying cleansers she knew worked.
I’ve been a pastor for several decades, and one thing I’ve noticed is that if you aren’t careful, you can make salvation a whole lot more complicated than it needs to be. One reason this happens seems to be when the Bible student stops reading widely in the Bible and zeroes in on one book such as Romans or Galatians. These are important books, but need to be balanced off with the Gospel of John and his three little letters just before Revelation. And Jesus’ words should be given greatest prominence.
In other words, we should stay out of the “weeds,” the nit-picky questions some theologians create, questions which might not be as big a deal as they make them. The gospel is stated most simply, of course, in John 3:16, and builds on the truth that God loves me and His Son willingly gave His life so that I could live forever.
Why not spend a few minutes reviewing some Bible-wide facts about this crucial topic? Click the link just below: