An open letter to Bill O’Reilly


Dear Bill,

I don’t often get to watch your show, because of the time it comes on here.  But I caught the late show as I was getting ready to sleep last night.  You were talking to a Baptist pastor about interpreting the Bible.  You told him you were writing a book about Jesus and were studying Scripture, and wanted to know if you needed to believe Jesus when he said, in Matt 12:40 that, like Jonah in the belly of the whale…”

The bigger question is this: “How are we to interpret Scripture?” Since you’re a Catholic, I’d suggest, for starters, that you read “Dei Verbum”.  Entirely.  But as to the specific question, sometimes it helps to understand the genre of literature of the original writing.  The Book of Jonah is an Old Testament parable or satire. Because of this, we may say that the story of Jonah is fictional, though we can’t say that with certainty.  In Matthew, Jesus uses the example of Jonah, saying “As Jonah was in the belly of the whale 3 days and nights, so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights.”  He’s telling the Pharisees that they’ve been given lots of signs, but they ignore them all.

I also want to applaud Dennis Miller for his restraint.  He could have really let you have it, regarding the President.

Bill, I know you try to be so fair and balanced, but I urge you to be a true Catholic man.  You can love the sinner and hate the sin.  You can believe Obama’s a good guy that makes terrible decisions.  You can believe the same about abortion.  A human has dignity, regardless of where that human lives-under a bridge, in a dormitory, in the womb, in the nursing home.  You can be vehemently against the act of abortion.  But that saying “I’m personally against it, but I support a woman’s right to choose…” always leaves off a word…choose…what?

If you see this Bill, I hope you will do some things while writing your book, Killing Jesus.  I hope you’ll pray about it.  I hope you’ll spend some time with Jesus in the Eucharist.  And I hope you’ll educate yourself on Bible interpretation.

God bless.

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