Correct Bible Intrepretation Rules Part 1 — No Verse Stands Alone
(Ver 2.1) This is Part 1 of a series of lessons on Correct Bible Interpretation. In this series I try to present basic rules governing correct Bible interpretation. Today is a very simple rule to learn and to follow, yet so many have totally missed it. Everyone needs to understand that no single verse of scripture is an island. You might not understand that analogy but what I mean is that no verse of scripture is independent of the rest of the scriptures in the Bible and stands alone. So many people read one scripture and get so excited by what it says they seem to forget how it fits with the rest of the Bible. As a result of an overabundance of enthusiasm for the one solitary verse they have taken it and tried to treat it like God didn’t say anything else in the whole book. Many take a single verse of scripture and change it into a verse named Robinson Crusoe and have stranded it on an island in their mind. This kind of reasoning makes the Bible very easy to change the meaning into saying something that it does not say. If you isolate any verse in the Bible you can make the Bible say some very bad things. This is a common error found in incorrect Bible interpretations everywhere. Here is a verse of scripture that Jesus taught us and it actually says a lot about this subject that I am talking about today:
Mat 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
What you can see is that Jesus contrasts two realities, physical food and the Word of God. God compares both of them to be essential, but for the later to have precedence over the former. In this verse Jesus says one key word that is essential to apply correctly. This word is “EVERY” and that implies you better know more than one verse on any subject. It is clear to me that the Word of God is spiritual food and you must feed on it as often as you do natural food in order to grow strong spiritually. If you are only feeding on one verse then you are probably being starved spiritually. If you are focused on one verse only, you are ignoring the rest of God’s comments on the subject. Here is another very relevant verse for this subject of isolated verses:
2Co 13:1 This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.
God tells us that every word that we believe must be based upon more than one witness. A witness is someone who speaks the truth in a court case or a trial. A witness is always sworn to tell the truth and the whole truth and nothing but the truth. This is a Bible basic concept of correct Bible interpretation. Do not take one verse which is one witness and teach anything. Go and search the Bible for a corresponding witness to the verse. Many times this is one verse from the Old Testament and one verse from the New Testament. Other times it is two or three verses in just the New Testament. What we find in doing this is that God’s truth is rightly divided based upon our ability to find multiple witnesses in the Bible of what we have read. This is why some people are very foolish in their practice of handling snakes in their church services because they found one verse in Mark that they think says for them to do this. That is STUPIDITY gone to seed bursting forth into great error!
What we should be doing is asking how does this verse that I found fit into the Bible’s big picture? How does this verse relate to the other verses on the subject? What else does God and the Bible say about this subject? Can I find more than one witness in the Bible in order to declare this verse a truth? This is the way God designed the Bible and this is how the Bible works. If you learn these concepts they will help you tremendously in changing how you study the Bible.
If you would like to continue reading in this series of lesson concerning correct Bible interpretation please continue to the next lesson Part 2.