Join us today for the Saturday Night Special with Chad M. Mansbridge author of You Can Handle the Truth: Making Sense of the Bible in 3 Simple Steps...
In this episode Chad m. Mansbridge about his approach to the study of the Bible...
In tonight’s Saturday Night Special I interview Chad Mansbridge. I ask Chad about his book You Can’t Handle the Truth. I also ask Chad how his faith journey led him to this book and his first book. I also ask Chad what he sees as the key to really understanding the Bible.
Join in on the Chat below.
SNS 168: Saturday Night Special - Interview with Chad M. Mansbridge author of You Can Handle the Truth
[00:00:00] Scott Maderer: Welcome to tonight, Saturday Night Special episode 168.
[00:00:05] Chad M. Mansbridge: Good day. I'm Chad Mansbridge. I'm gonna challenge you to invest in yourself, invest in others, develop your influence and impact the world by using your time. Your talent and your treasures to live out your calling. Having the ability to really understand the truth of your life is key.
[00:00:23] And one of the ways to be inspired to do that is to listen to this The Inspired Stewardship Podcast with my friend Scott Maderer.
[00:00:33] Anyone listening today that's got a long term relationship with someone, you know there's a difference between what someone says and what they mean. You've all had arguments that's saying, Yes, honey, that's not what I meant. I know that's what I've said, but I didn't mean that. We've all had disagreements like that.
[00:00:47] And the same is true with the scripture and I'd suggest that most of our work as workmen or work people with the Bible is in that second step. It's really critical. That's where Bible teaching.
[00:00:57] Scott Maderer: Welcome and thank you for joining us on the Inspired [00:01:00] Stewardship Podcast. If you truly desire to become the person who God wants you to be, then you must learn to use your.
[00:01:08] Your talent and your treasures for your true calling. In the Inspired Stewardship podcast, you will learn to invest in yourself, invest in others, and develop your influence so that you can impact the world.
[00:01:22] In tonight's Saturday Night special, I interview Chad Mansbridge. I ask Chad about his book. You can't handle the. I also asked Chad about how his faith journey led him to both writing this book and his first book. I also asked Chad what he sees as the key ingredient to really understanding the Bible.
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[00:02:18] What's more, we take the approach of looking at your personality and how you actually look at things in the world and tailor the productivity system to your person. Because the truth is, a lot of the systems that are out there are written really well for somebody with a particular personality type. But if you have a different approach to things, they just don't work.
[00:02:40] But there's tools and techniques and approaches that you can take that will work for anyone, and we help you do that and productivity for your passion. Check it out firstname.lastname@example.org slash launch. More than just a lovable Ossie. Chad is best known for his ability to [00:03:00] communicate profound and complex biblical truth with clarity, simplicity, and a whole lot of fun, making him one of Australia's most dynamic Bible teachers and sought after Christian communicators, his latest book, You Can't Handle the Truth Making Sense of the Bible in three simple steps is a stand.
[00:03:20] In dealing with the weighty issue of biblical interpretation, it is received widespread praise from both Pentecostals and Presbyterians, professors and pastors, teen bloggers and bestselling authors, college presidents, prominent publishers, and even Bible translators who testify to its creative, engaging, and conversational approach to an otherwise daunting subject matter.
[00:03:44] Chad is energetic, yet authentic and. Broad appeal for Christian audiences of all stripes who are serious about their relationship with God and growing in their knowledge of the word. Welcome to the show, Chad.
[00:03:57] Chad M. Mansbridge: Hey, good day, Scott. Thank you so much for having me.
[00:03:59] Scott Maderer: [00:04:00] Absolutely. So I talked a little bit in the intro about your latest book, You Can Handle the Truth, and I love the title by the way.
[00:04:07] So what what brought you to, to write this book? What was the journey to bringing this book
[00:04:13] Chad M. Mansbridge: into the. For those old enough to understand it wasn't inspired by Jack Nicholson. So let's just clear that up right now. Okay. But you can handle the truth. Basically it's a take on a Bible verse.
[00:04:25] There's a book in the Bible called Timothy Paul the Apostle, was one of the main characters in the New Testament. And his writing, what a really mentoring. Letters to a younger preacher. A younger pastor, and in both of those letters he says a very similar thing. He says, Listen, the Bible is good.
[00:04:39] Basically the scriptures are a good thing. But you need to handle them well. You need to treat them properly. There's a right way and there's a wrong way to handle the scripture. There's a good way, There's a bad way. There's a. Healthy way, there's an unhealthy way. And as many of our listeners know there's not, there's also a harmful way.
[00:04:57] Yeah. Truth and the truth of [00:05:00] the scripture is one of those things that's good. It's it's like sex in a way, or it's like fire. Maybe I should put it that way. These are good things that God has given, but they're also powerful. The reality is that powerful things need to be handled with care.
[00:05:14] And so in his second letter to Timothy, he says, Listen, I want you to be a good workman or a good work person. takes on the picture of a trade, sorry, American listeners, a tradesman, in Australia. We just a appreciate everything, a trade. And and he says, Listen, I want you to be a good worker who correctly handles.
[00:05:34] The word of truth correctly handles the word of truth. And so that's truly where the inspiration of the title you can handle. The truth comes from, It comes from that. Okay. But you can't
[00:05:44] Scott Maderer: read it without picturing that scene
[00:05:46] Chad M. Mansbridge: in the movie . Okay? Maybe there's a five percenter in there anyone under 30 wouldn't, probably, wouldn't get that scar.
[00:05:53] That's true,
[00:05:54] Scott Maderer: That's true .
[00:05:55] Chad M. Mansbridge: But but you can handle the truth. And this comes from I've been a [00:06:00] pastor for 20. I'm only 43, but I've given the best part of my adult life really to preaching and teaching the scripture in the context of local church. And over that time, I've developed what I would call two great preaching passions.
[00:06:12] I can preach on anything in a sense after 20 years. But my first great preaching passion is Jesus. I love speaking about Jesus. I love speaking about what he's done for humanity and how that can benefit people that, that accept him. But my second great preaching passion is basically helping people.
[00:06:28] To navigate the Bible for themselves. So there's another book that Paul wrote in the New Testament called Ephesians. It was basically to a group of people in a city called Ephesus. And he says to them, Listen, Jesus has given certain people to the church with different giftings. They include apostles and prophets, and also evangelists, pastors and teachers.
[00:06:47] Here I am, I'm a Bible teacher. Okay, what? What do I need to know about that ball? And he says, And their job is to equip God's people. To minister equip God's people to do the work of the Christian life. And so my job [00:07:00] as a Bible teacher is not actually to teach the Bible only the job of the Bible teacher is to teach others, to teach themselves to equip other people with the tools necessary for them to handle the Bible.
[00:07:14] For themselves. And so really that's become the great inspiration of this book. You can handle the truth and much of my pulpit ministry whenever I reach, take to the pulpit, take to the microphone. I'm not only wanting to teach people something that's true, I'm wanting to help them unpack truth for themselves.
[00:07:31] And so it's a little about the age old, their adage you can give a man a. And you'll feed him for a day. But if you teach Amanda Fish he'll feed himself for a lifetime. And that's what I wanna do. I wanna help other people look after themselves. And so helping people help themselves on how to handle the Bible for themselves is one of my great passions.
[00:07:49] And so that's where you can handle the truth. The inspiration comes from. You mentioned in there the idea of handling it well because it's powerful. And you alluded to [00:08:00] some things what. Without, I, I don't wanna get into this and turn it into a political thing or a pointing fingers thing or anything like that, cuz that doesn't serve any purpose.
[00:08:08] Scott Maderer: But what are some of the ways that you see people approach understanding the Bible that perhaps is less than a healthy approach
[00:08:16] Chad M. Mansbridge: to it? Ooh, oh my goodness. Where do we start? In many ways, in many. I'll tell you what there's three things I bring up in one chapter about the importance of reading the Bible with honesty and humility.
[00:08:31] And openness, being willing to learn. And the there's three enemies, as it were, three obstacles that we face in our reading that humility can really help with. And the first is preconception. Sometimes we just come to the Bible with preconceived ideas, okay? That we can't help that. And that's okay.
[00:08:49] You. Cannot help that the way you were brought up the way the culture you were brought in, the very fact that you were raised in the 20th or 21st century, this shapes who you are and you [00:09:00] bring that levels of understanding that you may not even be conscious of to your Bible reading. And so oftentimes because of that, you may read into scripture.
[00:09:09] Things that are just not there. But because of your. Preconceived ideas. And so preconceptions is a very strong thing. Then oftentimes when you read the scripture, we come, or when you read any literature, you are also shaped by your own preferences and your own prejudices.
[00:09:27] There's things we like and there's things we don't like, and that's okay because that makes us who we are. There's certain things that Scott likes that I don't, and that's fine because that makes. Individuals. But it also means when it comes to truth that if we prefer certain things over others, we may have prejudice against the things we don't like.
[00:09:44] And so in the book I say, Look, for years there were truths. And I was quite comfortable with God's love, God's kindness, God's grace. What happened to Jesus on the cross? Okay, the Christmas story. I'm very comfortable with these things, but when it comes to biblical teaching, Something called [00:10:00] eschatology, like end times and whatever.
[00:10:02] I'm like, I was really uncomfortable with that, and so as a reader, I'd often just read over those bits. I don't really, Oh, I'm just gotta flick,
[00:10:08] Scott Maderer: get that chapter. I'll skip that chapter. Yeah,
[00:10:10] Chad M. Mansbridge: it's okay. Yeah. And as a preacher, I completely neglected it because we come with preferences and the last thing that we come to after we've been confronted with truth is we have pride so preconception.
[00:10:23] Preferences and then pride. And sometimes we're confronted with things and Oh, I was wrong I was wrong. And it takes a great humility to say, I don't know everything, and I might be wrong. I don't know everything, and I might be wrong. And I just think humility both in the political sphere as you, you brought up.
[00:10:42] Don't wanna get political, but let's say cultural. Culturally, our culture could do a hang of a lot better if we all just embrace a greater dose of humility and openness in our life to be a good student. If Jesus called himself a good teacher people called him a good teacher. If that's the [00:11:00] case, if that's who Jesus is, then where to be good student.
[00:11:02] And a good student says, I'm open to learning. I don't know it all. I might be wrong. I'm all ears. Give it to me. I'll listen and I'll discern what you're saying and I'll take that on board. So yeah, I think people mishandle the scriptures for a number of reasons. But often or sadly, one of the outcomes of mishandling the scriptures is it can not only minimize the power of God's word and the good power that it can have in people's life.
[00:11:29] It can also cause damage and danger and harm. And in the extreme examples of this, we can see cults. That form that actually really hurt and harm people. We can see abuse of certain groups of people taking scripture and using it to minimize or abuse females slavery in, in, in our histories.
[00:11:48] There's been scriptures that have been used to endorse slavery. I believe that was part of your history that in the USI as well. And and so yeah, we can misuse what God has given to bring life and liberty [00:12:00] and freedom and God has given to illuminate people. We can use that very same truth mishandling, it can hurt people.
[00:12:07] And exactly as I said before, like the example of a fire a fire can be a beautiful thing. It could warm your home. I had a fire on last night and here in Australia at the moment, we're stepping into our winter time and in the middle of the year. And so we're lighting the fire in the home.
[00:12:20] But I tell you what, fires cause incredible damage here in Australia, like they do in California and places there in the us. If fires are mishandled, they can burn. Oh, they can bless you. And the same street with the word of God, right? Fire
[00:12:32] Scott Maderer: is a tool. It could be used to cook your food, to warm your house.
[00:12:36] Good thing fire in your living room in a fireplace. Beautiful evening. Fire in your living room and you don't have a fireplace. Not such a great evening wrong. Are you saying that it's you just, it all depends on how you steward it? Is that exactly you're saying it's all of that stewardship?
[00:12:54] Chad M. Mansbridge: Well,
[00:12:54] Scott Maderer: that and yeah. And again, I think with the Bible and talking [00:13:00] about that we've, you don't have to be around very long before you can find somebody using something. In the Bible as a, a as a hammer as opposed to to put a forwarded agenda. And even if they're right it just, that's not, that doesn't seem to be able to, it doesn't con, it doesn't convince anyone if that's just screaming at each other as loud as we can and hoping that I'm louder than you if that makes sense.
[00:13:32] Yeah. Yeah, and I think a lot of that comes out of exactly what you said. That combination of preconceived ideas and pride especially, can cause us to, to decide not only do I already know what's right, I I'm the one that's supposed to. To push it on everybody else too. That and we, I think we've all had experiences with that.
[00:13:56] So I know you've written a, another book before this called He [00:14:00] Qualifies You. How do you see the intersection between these two books? For
[00:14:06] Chad M. Mansbridge: readers? So there's a really interesting story about that. That was my first book. It came out in 2010, so that's now good. Over a decade old.
[00:14:14] And a friend of mine was living in Hong Kong, who was just starting up a Christian publishing label. And he'd heard me preach a message on something known in the script. In the Bible as covenant. And Covenant is basically a certain form of relationship. It's like a contract.
[00:14:29] It's an agreement you have with someone. And in the Bible, God enters into covenant relationships with people. He enters into relationships that have certain agreements about them and conditions and and promised blessing that comes. About from that. Okay, so my friend of mine had heard me preach this message and he is like, Ah, Chad, I wanna put together a book with different authors.
[00:14:49] I'd love for you to write a chapter for that book from that message. I'm like, Yeah, I can do that anyway, soon after I got pneumonia. And I'm in my third, I'm. 30 years of age, I got pneumonia. There you go. [00:15:00] So I'm in bed for two weeks. I'm like, I'm not gonna waste this time. I'm gonna write that chapter And my friend read it and he said, Mate, this needs to be its own book.
[00:15:07] And so it's only a little book. He qualifies you. It's it's a book. You can actually sit down and read in an hour. And so good for men. I often say, Yeah, it's a, you can read this, just sit down and read it in an hour. But it also one of the things it does is it's a small book, but it.
[00:15:22] Big message. It's actually a step back panoramic look at the Bible story from beginning to end through the lenses of different covenants that God has made with people, different relationships. And so the Christians in the audience listening today would understand that there's three there's a number of covenants in the Bible, but the three major ones the ones characterized by the.
[00:15:43] Abraham Moses and then Jesus Abraham, the Abrahamic Covenant and Moses, the law covenant given to the Hebrew people at Mount Sinai. 10 Commandments, Charlton, Heston, that whole thing. And then Jesus in the New Testament the word New Testament actually means new [00:16:00] covenant. That's what testament means.
[00:16:01] If you read the King James around Easter time, Jesus takes a glass of red wine and he says, This is a New Testament in my blood. So New Testament actually means a new relationship that Jesus brings. So these three men, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus. And the idea is just taking a step back and seeing the story of God's people through the lenses of these different relationships, how God treats people differently.
[00:16:24] Now, one of the things that's confus or can be confusing about the Bible is Is there two different gods in this book? The God of the old and the God of the new and what happened? Is God moody? Did he, does he have a mood swings? Does he change his personality? What the heck's going on?
[00:16:39] Midlife crisis. Yeah. Oh yeah. He is judgey over here and then all of a sudden he's really kind and loving and oh the Lord, and then what's no. God is consistent. God is the same. But he does have different relationships with different people, and he is faithful to those agreements, and so he qualifies.
[00:16:55] You basically came out of. Pneumonia , where I wrote that book. [00:17:00] And and it helps people have a panoramic view of the Bible. Now, how it relates to my current. My current book you Can Handle, The Truth is much bigger. It's a substantive book. But one of the aspects of understanding the Bible well is to have a big picture perspective.
[00:17:14] So Christians would often say, Oh yes, I know that's what the Bible says, but you have to take it in context. Context. Okay. One of the context is you've gotta stand back and have a good idea of the big Bible story. So whenever you're reading something, a character, a teaching, a command, an instruction, a poem, whatever you're reading in the Bible, a prophet.
[00:17:34] It always helps to understand where that story, where that character, where that teaching fits in the context of the big picture. And many Christian Scott, as we debate and argue over certain things about the Bible, we fall into that trap of not seeing the forest because of the trees. We get so consumed with the intricate detail of this tree and the bark structure and the layering on that tree.
[00:17:57] We're like no. Hang on. Step back, [00:18:00] see the forest, you'll find your way out of this mess. If you can have a panoramic view rise up like an eagle look over the big picture. And so I say all that to say, understanding the big Bible story is really important and understanding covenant. Is important to understanding the big Bible view because God is the same God in Genesis, same God in Revelation, same God all the way through.
[00:18:24] But there are different relationships that take place, different covenants that are applicable to different people over that time and understanding that is really beneficial to getting a big pitch of view of the Bible and therefore understanding the detail that you just happen to be reading that day.
[00:18:40] Scott Maderer: So diving into the, You can handle the Truth book a little bit more. You you mentioned it's a little bigger book and you have three broad. Steps that you have in the book. Can you kinda walk us through the arc of the book? And [00:19:00] obviously you can't get into all of the 272 little details, but what's it, what is the big story of the book and the big arc that you take people through in you can handle the truth.
[00:19:10] Chad M. Mansbridge: The, one of the reasons it's a more substantive book is because it really does deal with a big issue. How are we supposed to handle the Bible? That's no small deal, man. This is all our debates, discussions, disagreements and dialogue come around. We fought wars over that. Oh yeah. Any more than one actually.
[00:19:28] Cause all Christians say, we believe the Bible. Okay. We even have the same book, man. You. When I was when I was a young person, I went on Christian camps with Christians from different persuasions and we realized we have very different views, but we've all got the same book. Okay, So this subject is significant.
[00:19:45] The fancy word for it is, and that's just
[00:19:46] Scott Maderer: staying within Christianity. Not to mention you have other religions that believe. Portions of, or have overlap as well. So it's even more diverse if you go on other level.
[00:19:58] Chad M. Mansbridge: Yeah, exactly. You can [00:20:00] con, I mean in the book, I make very clear, just from the outset, listen, I'm talking here about the Protestant Bible, the 66 books.
[00:20:05] Let's just minimize that, limit conversation to that. Okay. But yeah, so talk about those books. We become a widely different conclusions, but it's all because of, we just handle the Bible differently. So it is a massive. Subject. But one of my things that I always endeavor to do, and one of my I guess my strengths as a Bible teacher is to make the complex simplified and to understand something in a simple way.
[00:20:28] You're right, the subtitle of the book you Can Handle The Truth is Making Sense of the Bible. In three simple steps. Now for the technical people listening, those three simple steps basically follow what's known as the inductive method of study. Any technical terms like that are in the back of the book, because I'm trying to reach an audience that's not academic that's not necessarily scholarly.
[00:20:50] I'm trying to reach every day ordinary run of the meal. Christians who love their Bible, love God, and wanna understand it better. So if that's, You're the type of person I'm trying to reach. And so [00:21:00] those technical terms are there, but they're in the back of the book and the end notes is about 230 end notes.
[00:21:04] But the basic arc of the book is saying, Listen, you need to understand the Bible world. You need to ask questions. And so I phrase or I shape the book around three key questions and this is what they are. Number one, you need to ask, what does it say if you're gonna understand the Bible. , You need to know what it says.
[00:21:23] I think that's a pretty basic way to start, Scott. Okay. What does it actually say? What does the Bible say? Secondly, you've gotta ask what does that mean? Okay, I know what it says, but what does it mean? And then thirdly, we ask what does it matter? What does it say? What does that mean?
[00:21:43] And who cares? What does it matter to you? What does it matter to me today? And that three step process, those three questions that a good student always ask questions. It's one of the best ways to learn is a three step process on how to handle the Bible [00:22:00] well, what does it say? That deals with how we read the Bible.
[00:22:02] If you wanna know what the Bible says read it. Okay. It's pretty simple. You gotta read the thing. And so we talk in the first part of the book about how to read the Bible well, okay. How to be a good reader. The second part is what does that. Meme, fancy term for that is exegesis. And we talk about things like context.
[00:22:21] Ah, okay. Where does this fit in the big picture? Do I need to do a smaller picture study on the this word and how it might be used elsewhere? We can zoom out. We can zoom in. What do I need to understand about culture? Ancient Hebrew culture cuz the Bible was it might say copyright 1985 in the front of your Bible, but it wasn't written in 1985.
[00:22:42] Okay? Your Bible was written 1400 or 2000 years ago, or 1400 years before that. However, women, to understand all that, it was written in an ancient culture. What do we need to understand about ancient cultures? To get into the mind of the writer, to know what he meant when he read a certain thing. And so we talk about some aspects of [00:23:00] ancient Hebrew culture.
[00:23:01] We talk about the importance of genre. That not all of the Bible is supposed to be understood, literally. And we know this from anything about Jesus. We when Jesus said destroy this temple, he was standing by a massive. Massive one of the wonders of the ancient world, the Jewish temple at the time in Jerusalem, and he said, Destroy this temple and I'll rebuild it in three days.
[00:23:20] And people thought you're a humble carpenter son. What an idiot to think that you can rebuild this structure in three days. It's taken decades to build this thing. And of course then it says no. Jesus was not talking literally then when you said temple, he was talking about his body.
[00:23:35] He was talking. Resurrection. Okay? So he was actually not talking. He was not meant to be understood. Literally when he said that. And they get, people get into a lot of trouble when they take Jesus words or pull the Bible's words literally when it's actually meant to be taken literally. You're meant to understand the Bible in the context of the literature that is written.
[00:23:55] So something that's poetic or something that's exaggerated. Does the Bible [00:24:00] exaggerate? Yeah, it does at times because pro prophetic people, poetic people, they exaggerate in song, they're emotional and they, to get a point across they can speak in ways that aren't supposed to be understood literally. So we look at that as well.
[00:24:13] A lot of controversy, a lot of different opinions stem from that. I just take the Bible literally. No, you don't. Okay. No. Cause you. Because , otherwise you'd be advocating for cannibalism and eating
[00:24:25] Scott Maderer: And smashing babies against rocks that's in there.
[00:24:28] Chad M. Mansbridge: one of your favorite songs. That is
[00:24:30] Scott Maderer: 19.
[00:24:31] Smash Babies Against Rocks. That's basically what it's talking about. And yet but again, there's a reason that's in there, if you just lift it outta context and say that, that's what the Bible's telling me to do. Not what the Bible's telling you to do there,
[00:24:46] Chad M. Mansbridge: but yeah.
[00:24:47] No that's not a commonly sung psalm on Sundays. No, it's not. No, we don't,
[00:24:52] Scott Maderer: there's not many sermons reached on that particular passage,
[00:24:55] Chad M. Mansbridge: so That's right. So it's one thing to answer the [00:25:00] first question, what does it say? But the second question, what does it mean? I'd suggest that most disagreements come from this point.
[00:25:07] Okay? So what does that actually mean? And look, anyone listening today that's got a long term relationship with someone, you know there's a difference between what someone says and what they mean. You've all had arguments that's saying, Yes, honey, that's not what I meant. I know that's what I've said, but I didn't mean that.
[00:25:20] We've all had disagreements like that. And this same is true with the scripture, and I'd suggest that most of our work. Workman or work people with the Bible is in that second step. It's really critical. That's where Bible teaching often comes in, and that's where in, in my church tradition I come from.
[00:25:35] What many people would describe as a Pentecostal church tradition, it's really a weakness in many pulpits. Many preachers read a passage of scripture or half a verse, depending on what they're feeling for the day. What does it say? Here's what the Bible says, and they jump straight to step three, which is this is what you should do about it.
[00:25:51] No. Hang on mate. Hang on. What's this second step? What does, what we've just read, what does it actually mean? Does the historical never [00:26:00] changing, timeless meaning
[00:26:02] Chad M. Mansbridge: text. We need to understand that before we seek to apply how that might work in our life today. And that's the third step it brings.
[00:26:08] The like a triple jump athlete would not reach his goal or her goal if they did not commit themselves to that third step. So it is with handling the scripture, what does it. Step one, what does it mean? Step two, or lastly what does it matter? What am I supposed to do with that? What are the implications of.
[00:26:27] Truth to me today, and what am I supposed to do with it? Uh, Should I apply it? Is there any application for me when I'm reading a story about God commanding people to sacrifice doves and pigeons and bulls and goats? Okay. That's what the Bible says. It means that's an act of worship. I get that.
[00:26:45] What does it matter to me today? Am I supposed to do that? What does it matter to me? And we look also in that last part of the book about how to know when to apply the scripture. Because while all scripture might be written for us it's not all [00:27:00] necessarily written to us. While all scripture is written for our information, all scriptures good for you.
[00:27:05] Even Uber dire and nam and books you've probably never heard of. These books are good. They're good for your information, but they're not all necessarily for your. Application because you in many ways are very different oftentimes to the ancient audiences in the covenantal context in which the Bible was written.
[00:27:23] So that's why that second step, what does it mean really then helps us to go, ah, how does that matter to me today? And that's where we seek the issue of applying biblical truth to our life.
[00:27:36] Scott Maderer: When you think about that And I would agree with you, I think in the, What does it mean Step is where I know when I'm preparing, cuz as I'm a lay servant and I train others how to be, what is called lay servants in the Methodist tradition.
[00:27:52] And so one of the things I actually teach on is how to do a sermon. But I'm teaching laity how to do a sermon. And [00:28:00] often they have not had a theological study. They've not been to seminary. They none of the background that a pastor would have. And it's interesting because we spend a lot of time on how can you do a preparation for a sermon.
[00:28:15] and understand not just what the Bible says and not just why it matters or what somebody should do with it, but that second step that you're talking about, what does it mean? Because I agree with you. I think often we go from one to three. And don't really think about the middle. And I think it, it often could lead us astray in developing a message for others as well.
[00:28:38] Yeah. Yours is now the second book that I've interviewed somebody that I'm adding to the list that I keep relay servants of books that they can read. Themselves develop more. I didn't actually tell you that before the show, but there you go. , it'll make that list. So when you think about the why does it, what does it matter, what does it mean?
[00:28:57] Kinds of questions. What, [00:29:00] why do you think it's important for people to look at the Bible today? What does it mean for people today to actually study the bible?
[00:29:10] Chad M. Mansbridge: Oh, that's a great question. Look, my first answer is that the Bible contains truth. The things in the Bible aren't true.
[00:29:17] Because they're in the Bible. They're in the Bible because they're true. The Bible is a true record of truths that have happened in history but also there are mystical, eternal, heavenly truths recorded in the Bible. It's this whole dynamic of the Bible being both a history book. Okay, that's fine.
[00:29:35] There's record some type of human history, but it's also a divine book. We look at this at the first part of. In the first part of my book, you can Handle The truth is we need to understand what the Bible is. And that's part of understanding it. It's a mix of divinity and humanity together.
[00:29:50] It's a work of God and a work of men. And so we need to understand, yes, it's historical, but it's also divine. The Bible contains eternal truth, heavenly truth that we would otherwise not know had God [00:30:00] not gone out of his lane to reveal it to us basically. And what's your question? Why is the Bible. The Bible's relevant because it contains truth.
[00:30:07] And quite frankly, truth is relevant every day of the week. Truth is always relevant. Truth is always important. It doesn't matter how confrontational how different it might seem to us, how uncomfortable, maybe it might make us at times truth. Is important because truth sets people free as Jesus said himself.
[00:30:26] When you know truth, the truth that you know will set you free truth le gives us stability in life. And truth is always important and the Bible contains truth. And yes, it contains truth about how to live a good life. I'm very happy to admit that that we can learn from historical information that's happened in the past.
[00:30:47] We can learn from God's wisdom. And admit the fact that we don't know everything and I'm still learning. Like I said before, I don't know everything. I might be wrong and I'm gonna learn from people who are smarter than me. It shouldn't take you long to realize God's a bit smarter than you, [00:31:00] and so learn from his wisdom.
[00:31:01] If he's got something to say about an issue, I wanna know that because I admit God is much wiser than me and that will help me with life. Then ultimately, the reason the Bible matters today is because the ultimate purpose of the Bible is to help us to know. And yes, it might help us live a better life on this planet.
[00:31:20] It might help the planet itself. All truth is good for all people at all time. But ultimately, the truth that matters most is the truth of who God is and what he has done through Jesus Christ. And that is why the Bible matters the most because. God reveals himself. The Bible is the self revelation of God in written form.
[00:31:42] And so God reveals himself in many ways. God makes himself known in many ways, but he has chosen in his wisdom to let make himself known be known through a written record. And knowing God is what. Because it's only knowing God that we can be guaranteed a life [00:32:00] beyond the life on this planet. It is in knowing God.
[00:32:03] Jesus said in John 17 that we have eternal life. And so ultimately the Bible is always relevant across culture, across gender, across economics, across political persuasions, across temperament type because it helps all people to know. So before I ask
[00:32:21] Scott Maderer: you a few questions that I like to ask all of my guests is there anything else you'd like to share about the book that, that you think would be important for the listener to.
[00:32:30] Look, one of the
[00:32:31] Chad M. Mansbridge: things you can handle the truth is not dealing with a new subject. It's a how to handle the Bible is a thing that academics and scholars and Bible teachers, Jewish and Christian have been looking at for hundreds, thousands of years. Okay? How are we supposed to deal with the scriptures?
[00:32:49] That it is a very unique offering in this space. It takes timeless truth and that's. I'm thrilled to hear you'll recommend it to people you train Scott, because you notice, [00:33:00] and you and I come from very different traditions, but you notice straight away, ah, this book is dealing with timeless truth.
[00:33:06] A long established rules and principles about how to handle the Bible well. But it is presented in a timely way. It is a fresh. Not a fresh take, but a fresh presentation. It is a fresh presentation and designed to reach people that aren't academics and aren't scholarly. I've got a shelf full of books on this subject that I've studied over the years as I've developed my own.
[00:33:29] And boy oh boy. Are some of them intimidating? They are. Huge, a massive hard cover books called An Introduction to Bible, Biblical Hermeneutics, or an Introduction to Bible interpretation. And they are so intimidating. It's a volume one . Yeah, exactly. And you're like, I'm, I've flick through. I'm never gonna read that thing again.
[00:33:47] It is full of scholarly academic language. You can handle the truth making sense of the Bible in three simple steps is a fresh a fresh approach. To these long established principles. And not only is it fresh, it's fun. [00:34:00] And I'm 43, as I said, I've been in ministry, I've been by for 20 years, since I was 23.
[00:34:04] When I was writing this, I was primarily writing for people who are younger than me. I actually take on the persona of Paul, the Apostle writing to Timothy at the start, I said, the title of the book comes from Paul's letter to Timothy. I take that on and say, Look, I've a 20 years experience here.
[00:34:20] I'm not a academic, okay? I'm not a scholar. I've got hands on experience with real people in a real church dealing with real issues, preaching and teaching them a real Bible. Okay? And I'm taking on the persona of the Apostle Paul to a younger generation saying, Listen, you too can handle the truth. You can do this.
[00:34:36] Yes, the Bible might seem complicated and confusing and even sometimes contradictory. There is a way to understand it. You can make sense of it if you employ these three simple steps. And so yeah, I'd love for people to know it is has a uni. It's unique, it's fresh. While I primarily had a younger audience in mind, I had 80 year olds in my church who've been pastors themselves for years, who've known [00:35:00] Jesus longer than I've been alive, who read my book, did my video course than I had that are accompanies it, and they said, I've learn.
[00:35:06] I've learned things. This is great. So even 80 year olds have learned from it because at the end of the day, everyone benefits from truth. And when truth is presented in a simple, easy to understand, approachable manner then all the better. Again, like I said I've read it. You were nice enough to send me a copy and I've read it, and.
[00:35:29] Scott Maderer: I, That's the other thing I would tell people is, at least in my opinion, I don't think you come at it with a particular agenda of a particular denomination or backing. It, you're not trying to put forward your interpretation. It feels much more like you're trying to help people walk through how to.
[00:35:49] Actually do the interpretation as opposed to sometimes it, even a book about how to read the Bible could actually be about how to believe what I think you should believe by reading the [00:36:00] Bible , yours doesn't come across that way. So it's it's, which is one of the reasons that I feel comfortable using it with people that are struggling in that way and trying to use it to develop a message and do it in a way that is.
[00:36:17] Beneficial for people, not in a way that is self-serving, for lack of a better.
[00:36:23] Chad M. Mansbridge: Hey I'm thrilled to hear you say that and I say in the preface right at the start, I say, Listen, one of the things I hope you walk away from this book is, I hope people walk away from my sermons on a Sunday, is that there's certain things I hear that they go, That is super clear.
[00:36:36] I am really confident in understanding that now because you've made that super clear. Yet there's also times, and this is another way that people learn, I also not only wanna present things that are really clear, but I wanna stir people's c. And so from time to time, as you saw in the book, there's certain examples I'd use that a bit
[00:36:52] Ooh, that's an interesting idea.
[00:36:55] And it was just to get to literally stimulate people's curiosity. And I believe that's what a [00:37:00] good teacher does. Again, to get people to think, to ask good questions, and even experience the Bible. People who've known the Bible for years or studi the Bible for years will read the book and will leave at times going, that's really got me thinking about that. Because I think part of the way and we've dialoged about this already, that we do have different ideas and in understandings of the Bible and in, in many ways, that's actually okay. And because the Bible is not super clear on every single.
[00:37:30] Issue. And it is good to ask questions. It's good to throw around different ideas. And every now and again, nerd out a little bit on the Bible. I'm all for that. As long as we, as I say towards the end, major on the majors, minor on the minors, understand that some things are super clear, other things are not so clear, and that's the way God's made it because that actually helps us to dialogue and to think things through and to stir curiosity.
[00:37:54] And yeah, I hope that people leave with a sense of confidence in the things. A fundamental to believe, but also [00:38:00] curiosity on some other things to go, Wow, this has really stirred my thinking. So I think both of those are a win for a Bible teacher. .
[00:38:07] Scott Maderer: Absolutely. So this is my favorite, one of my favorite questions.
[00:38:11] I always laugh cuz all of my questions are my favorite question. But anyway, that's all. Another story. Obviously my brain has inspired stewardship. I run things through that lens of stewardship a lot when we're having a conversation. And yet, speaking of meaning, that's one of those words that I've discovered over the years.
[00:38:28] Different people here and understand different things when they hear the word stewardship. So from your point of view, Does the word stewardship mean and what has its impact been on
[00:38:38] Chad M. Mansbridge: you? Great question and a great name for a podcast. It's one of the things that, that attracted me to you. When I when we first found one another stewardship, if I could sum it up with simply this, stewardship is having something in your possession that is not your possession.
[00:38:59] [00:39:00] Stewardship is having something in your possession. That's not your possessions. You have something that belongs. To
[00:39:09] Chad M. Mansbridge: else. And so Paul, the apostle, for example, when would say this to the Corinthians is talking about sex again in First Corinthians. And he says to them, which he does several times in Corinthians, he does several times.
[00:39:21] Yeah. It's not just a preacher's ploy to get people's attention when they're fading through a long podcast. No. It's he really does to them. But he says this, he says, Listen, your body. Is not your own. You've been bought with a price. When he is talking to them about how they should handle their body, he wants 'em to understand, look, your body is not actually your body.
[00:39:41] If you are married, there's a sense in which your are married partner that your body's also there. Theirs is yours. Yours is theirs. There's this sense of where to steward our body in a way that honors our married marriage partner. So therefore, you don't run off and sleep with other people, okay?
[00:39:57] Because that's their body, you're taking into that [00:40:00] relationship. And secondly and fundamentally, your body belongs to God. If you're a Christian, you've committed your life to him. Your body is not your own. You've been bought with a price. Your body belongs to another. And so Paul's saying, Listen, steward your body because ultimately it is God's body steward that gift that God has given you in a way that honors him.
[00:40:21] You talk your podcast here about stewarding time and treasures and talents and your temple. There's another one. Your tongue. Okay. Steward your words. This is a powerful thing. Make sure it's, you've got this thing in your possession. Steward it in a way. That understands not everything that I have belongs to me.
[00:40:39] The things that I've been given, I've been entrusted with for others. Okay? We can see this in the book of Romans really clearly. It's amazing. The book of Romans is one of those books where Paul unpacks the gospel, Freedom, liberty, grace God has forgiven you of all your sins. You're justified.
[00:40:56] It is a great book of the gospel. And yet, right at the start, [00:41:00] Paul says to the Romans, he says, I've never met you. I've never been to you. But I am in debt to. I am your debtor. He said, I am obligated to you. And it's this profound thing, Paul, how can you be in debt to people you've never met? And he says to them, I'm in debt to you because I want, I have the gospel that I need to preach to you.
[00:41:22] Paul understood that he was given a message, He was given the gospel of Jesus. And that message wasn't just for him, it was for others. His job was to take that message, to steward it and to take it to other people whom God had said this is for. So Scott, if I was to give you 50 bucks and I was to say, Listen, please pass this on to your next door neighbor, that $50 that I give you is not your, It might be in your position, but it's not your possession.
[00:41:48] By saying yes to me to do me a favor, you are you. I'm entrusting you with my money that I'm wanting you to give to your neighbor. That money doesn't belong to you, even though it's in your hand. [00:42:00] It belongs to me. Or you could say it belongs to that neighbor. Your job as a steward is you've got something in your possession that's not your possession.
[00:42:08] And so Paul says the same thing at the end of Romans. He says, You Christians in Rome, you owe it to the believers in Jerusalem. The Jewish people at that time, he said, You are in debt to them because they. Have given you something. You have something in your possession that belongs to them. And so stewardship, Yeah.
[00:42:26] Basically is having something in your possession that's not your possession and to handle it well, there's that word again, to handle. The things that God is entrusted to you, or if your listeners prefer the things that life is entrusted to you. And that's stewardship has the reputation to being a Christian buzzword, but the actual concept behind it is not exclusively Christian by any stretch of the imagination.
[00:42:49] Scott Maderer: Cuz like you said, even if you just believe that there's karma in the universal powers and this kind of. Still works the same way. You still have to take care of what what [00:43:00] the world has gifted you with or what God has gifted you with. So here's this is actually my favorite question, though.
[00:43:05] I've been told by guests that this is the hardest question if I invented this magic machine. And I was able to pluck you from the chair where you set this today and there in Australia, and transport you into the future, a hundred to 150, maybe even 200 years. But through the power of this machine, you were able to look back on your entire life and see all of the ripples, all of the impacts, all of the touches that you've left behind.
[00:43:32] What impact do you hope you've left on the world?
[00:43:34] Chad M. Mansbridge: the end of his life, Jesus, just before he died he prayed a prayer. It's recorded in John 17 and he says, I, Father, I have finished the work you've given me. I have finished the work that you've given me, and it's a really weird thing for him to say before he dies because he's still gotta die. He hasn't finished that.
[00:43:53] He hasn't risen from the dead. There's a, he hasn't sent the Holy Spirit. There's a whole lot of sub Jesus hasn't yet done. And so I'm like what do you mean [00:44:00] Jesus? When you say, I've finished, but even before you die, I've finished the work you gave me and explains it. In the next verse when he says, I have revealed you.
[00:44:09] To those that you've given me, I have made you known. And to me, I think that has become my life's mission. I I'd like to say that's the mission of every person is to know God and to make him known to others, as I say to my church often to know him and to show him. But in that time machine, I'd like to look back and to have people many people say, I know God because of.
[00:44:33] I in Chad's life, in looking at him, in hearing him, I came to know God, or I came to know God better because of his life. And that's what I, that's what I'd like.
[00:44:43] Scott Maderer: So what's on the roadmap? What's coming next for you as you move forward through this journey? In many ways that's a bit of a mystery to us, actually.
[00:44:53] Chad M. Mansbridge: Only just last month, September 22 after 20 years of leading the church that my [00:45:00] wife and I planted when we were just 20 three years of age we actually handed on the leadership. Role of that church, the being the lead pastor or the senior pastor. Some as your people may be familiar with and have relocated to another part of Australia.
[00:45:14] And so we're in a position right now of not really knowing what our future involves. I often say I'm very happy to be God's. Yes ma'am. I'm very happy when it comes to God speaking and saying something of saying yes to him. Joshua and Caleb in the Old Testament where they said Yes, no matter what God says, no matter what, The goals are coming up, even though there's uncertainties we'll say yes to him because we know we can do it.
[00:45:37] In fact, at the start of this year, 2022 as a pastor I opened the year with Acts 2022. It's a bit of a pa, it's a bit of a joke that pastors do. Okay? It's a pick a verse. It's got the reference to the year, and in Acts 2022 it's pulled the apostle speaking to a group of friends from Ephesus, the church that I mentioned before, and he says to them, Listen, I feel compelled by the Holy [00:46:00] Spirit to go to Jeru.
[00:46:01] But I don't quite know what's gonna happen to me there. And in 2022, that's the way we started the year. I feel compelled, I know God is saying this to me, although I'm not quite sure of all the detail. And so to answer your question, what's in the future for us? I'm not quite sure. But I know that we will follow God no matter what he says.
[00:46:20] I'm absolutely certain that Bible teaching ministry. Part of that. I've got other hobbies that I enjoy doing. I'm a father of four married men. So obviously all those things are part of our future. But exactly at this point in our life exactly what's what's store. We're not a hundred percent sure, but those who are interested can certainly find out about it as we do on social media and all the other platforms that are possible.
[00:46:45] Scott Maderer: And speaking of that, you can follow Chad on Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube. You can look him up. Look him up as Chad m Mansbridge. That's spelled just like it sounds or find out more about him on his [00:47:00] email@example.com or information about the latest book is available that you can handle the truth online.
[00:47:07] Of course, I'll have late all of that over in the show notes as well. Chad, is there anything else you'd like to share with the.
[00:47:12] Chad M. Mansbridge: I really appreciate that, Scott. And you're right, any details on me, Chad mansbridge.com or those social media channels. There's not too many man's bridges around, so I'm pretty easy to find.
[00:47:21] And of course, the book, you can handle the truth making sense of the Bible in three simple steps. Amazon, Barnes and Noble, wherever your audience gets their book, audio book actually narrated the book myself, which I think's Ideal when you listen to an audio book to actually hear the author speaking.
[00:47:36] So if you can handle my accent, then go over and get that as an audio book. But America,
[00:47:41] Scott Maderer: I, America, it's like Australian accent. So you're good. ?
[00:47:43] Chad M. Mansbridge: Yeah. Okay. Okay. No, I even talk about Australian rules football in there. I find a way to bring in our our national sports. So there you go. But no, look I'm very happy for people to track me down and I'm pretty easily traceable.
[00:47:56] Chad Mansbridge, you can handle the truth and. [00:48:00] Been great to be on with you today. Thanks so much, Scott.
[00:48:02] Scott Maderer: Thanks so much for listening to the Inspired Stewardship Podcast. As a subscriber and listener, we challenge you to not just sit back and passively listen, but act on what you've heard and find a way to live your calling. If you enjoyed this please do us a favor. Go over to inspired stewardship.com/itunes.
[00:48:29] Rate all one word, iTunes rate. It'll take you through how to leave a rating and review and how to make sure you're subscribed to the podcast so that you can get every episode as it comes out in your. Until next time, invest your time, your talent, and your treasures. Develop your influence and impact the world.
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Anyone listening that has a long term relationship with someone you know there is a difference between what someone says and what someone means. – Chad Mansbridge
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