I was wondering today what my top ten Bible verses would be. I know what you are thinking--"But Jamie, you're Catholic--you don't read the Bible!!" If you think that, I have to correct you. The Roman Catholic Church actually decided, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, what books would be canonical way back in 382 a.d. Not only that but scripture is woven through the fabric that is the mass.
Sadly, it is true that many Catholics do not know scripture very well at all and as St Jerome is credited as saying, "Ignorance of scripture is Ignorance of Christ." We need to do a better job at learning scripture and having a love and passion for God's Word.
So, here are my top ten favorite Bible verses. I invite you all to comment with your favorite ones. A small disclaimer--these are subject to change.
Top 10 Favorite Bible Passages
10. Galatians 5:12--if I was an athlete and people wanted my autograph, this is the Bible verse I would put at the end of my signature, just be cause I am ornery like that. :-)
9. Romans 7: 19-20 For I do not do the good I want, but I do the evil I do not want. Now if (I) do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. I really feel as if this is something that I could have written. I get so frustrated with myself because I know what the right thing to do is but I always fail and the thing that I do not want to do.
8. John 6: 51. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world. This chapter is call the Bread of Life Discourse. This section of the Bible is where we get our believe that at the Eucharist the bread and wine is transformed into the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.
7. Matt 16: 17-19 Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." These versus describe Jesus giving Peter the keys to the kingdom and His authority. It is the key verse that we go to when we defend the papacy.
6. James 2:24 See how a person is justified by works and not by faith alone This always seems like a slam dunk verse against sola fide or salvation by faith alone since catholics believe we are saved by faith AND works. To be honest, the whole sola fide thing has always annoyed me. It seems that it is two sides arguing about the same thing but using different words. I could be wrong though.
5. John 8:10 Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" This is after the Pharisees had brought the woman caught in adultery to Jesus and He told them "let he who is without sin cast the first stone." I suppose that should be the important verse to remember but I like this one because it seems to show a little orneriness in Jesus. He knows that everyone has left and I can just here Jesus asking this in a sarcastic tone.
4 John 2:5 His mother said to the servers, "Do whatever he tells you. Catholics get a bad rap in their love for Mary but I think this verse simplifies everything about Mary. She is only going to point us towards Jesus and say, "Do whatever he tells you."
3. Luke 22:42 Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done I think this is an important verse for us to remember. It's a simple prayer for us to pray too. Lord, I don't want to do this. This is difficult but let your will be done.
2. Luke 9:23 If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me This is similar to #3 in that it is a reminder to us that following Jesus is not going to be easy but that we have to pick up that cross every single day.
1. Luke 3: 7 He said to the crowds who came out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Now you might be think this one is odd and it is because the meaning goes beyond what is said. One day I was reading Luke with my handy Navarre Bible Commentary and the description of this passage really hit me. Normally, I read the bible and would pass right over this but the description went into such a deeper meaning and I was blown away about how little passages can have such big meaning.
So that's my list. It's in no particular order. For instance, I would think that Romans 7: 19-20 would be my number 1 passage because that whole section just really speaks to me. I've noticed that many of these passages are based in apologetics and I hope that as I learn more of scripture my favorite passages will speak more to my heart than my head. I pray that God gives me a passion for his Holy Word.