Category Archives: Bible Interpretation
When studying the Bible, we discover some of theological qualities of the deity of God. This is sometimes overlooked when we just read the Bible, but knowing these characteristics can help in our understanding of God’s Word. We should always start by knowing that God is the only deity power that knows everything and we should then realize that we are not him. This is a very basic truth, but I’ve heard some preachers get up and make statements, that sounds like they are God. For example, I heard more than one preacher say something like “Search the Bible and you won’t find anything that says blah, blah, blah”. This is about as an idiotic of a statement as anyone can make. I can only say that God is the only one that is qualified to make a statement like that since He is the only one that knows everything that the Bible says. Men sometimes act like they have searched and because they haven’t found anything, that means there is nothing about that subject in the Bible. Here is a truth that you should be aware of, in the New Testament Paul wrote “For we know in part”. If Paul knew only a part of the truth, I would venture to say that we only know a part of the part that Paul knew. I won’t call names in this blog but I will give examples.
I heard a minister say, you can search the Bible and you won’t find anything in it that says the church is the bride of Christ. What an idiot. Who does he think he is? Obviously he thought he was God who knows everything about the Bible. What people don’t realize is the complex ways that God uses in the Bible to conceal subjects. God uses a multitude of different methods to make the Bible a giant puzzle. There is symbolism, typology, analogies, patterns, parables, a multitude of ways to call the same object by the same name, there are multiple things called by the same name, there are independent truths, dependent truths, and on and on I could go. Guess what, I did what he said, I searched the Bible and I found a bunch of scriptures that confirmed the identity of the church as the bride of Christ and just because he didn’t see them, it doesn’t mean they don’t exist. What he did was he made a statement that caused a lot of not so capable or mature Christians to believe something that the Bible doesn’t say. What he did was contribute to the confusion and the divisions that are already well ingrained into the body of Christ. After I studied the subject, I have a hard time understanding how they miss it and don’t see it. This is such a problem that men make this mistake more often than they realize and this is the root cause of the majority of the divisions within the church. One group sees a truth, the other groups don’t. It would be nice if men only taught things that were really truth. I’ll end with one more example of arrogant idiocy. I heard a minister make this statement, “This woman is Israel, you can’t make this woman any other identity because it won’t harmonize with the rest of scripture”. Do you understand what an arrogant statement that is? He doesn’t know the rest of the scripture, so how can he make a statement like that? All he did was contribute to a falsehood using his opinion of the truth. He was talking about the identity of the woman in Revelation 12. After I studied the subject I didn’t have clue how he could have made that statement. He didn’t give any scriptures or backing for the statement, he just said it like it was Gospel and therefore everyone was suppose to believe it.
I don’t fault these teachers that I just gave you as an example, for they truly think and believe they are right. The Bible is however so much more complex than it appears on the surface. So instead of telling people what the Bible doesn’t say, concentrate and focus on what God tells you that it does say and only teach that. We have so many examples, of this in the church it would be impossible to include every example. So what is the low hanging fruit of this topic? Teach what you know and not what you think you know. If you make a statement make sure you can provide the verses to back the statement. If you can’t do that then it is wise to keep your mouth shut.
(Ver 1.1) This is Part 1 in a series of lessons on understanding Correct Bible Interpretation. I personally believe in order to correctly interpret the Bible we need a good foundational understanding of all of the Bible basic concepts and themes. The Bible is certinaly the most complex book written by the most intelligent author that you will ever read or attempt to understand. That statement might surprise many. You see I base that statement upon the clear evidence of the number of splits and divisions within the body of Christ that we can see everywhere around us. What other religion in the world do you see such widespread division? Can you name any? I know Islam has two basic groups and maybe a third group of extremist. But look through the phone book yellow pages and see how many different types of Christian churches you find listed. In some large cities you could be looking for a long time. The Bible contains simple truths but even these are not always clearly presented. However, I believe that we have to understand some of the basics before we can ever begin to understand any of the more complex subjects of the Bible. I firmly believe that the complex truths of the Bible are built upon many other simplier truths found in the Bible.
What are the primary themes and subjects of the Bible? I would say that we should start by saying the Bible is predominantly about Jesus Christ. In other words Jesus Christ is the central theme to the entire Bible. You should be able to find Jesus in every chapter of the Bible in some form. Jesus as a central theme occurs very frequently in every book of the Bible. This is one of the primary keys to understanding and interpreting the Bible correctly. There are certainly many other central themes that are found throughout the Bible and I will not attempt to name them all. If you would like to leave a comment on this blog about a central theme that you see as important, please do that and share it with the rest of us.
The Bible is written much like a weaver would create a fine tapestry. There are threads of truth woven throughout the scriptures. These truths are woven among other truths and intersect at specific points of the textual fabric. Like a tapestry, these threads woven correctly project a larger image and a picture that can only be seen after stepping back and looking at it from a distance. If you stand too close you always miss the big picture. If you only study the big picture, you always miss the details. Biblical themes should be prevalent throughout the scripture and help you to clearly see the big picture. The big picture themes should always help you to understand the details. There is a unique harmony and balance between the two. For example, Jesus said in the Gospels, I give you a new commandment and he told us of the commandment of love. In this he also told us that love fulfills all of the law. So we should recognize that the God who is Love, is a central theme of the Bible and you should see love in action as you read the rest of the Bible. God gives us the definition of the Agape kind of love in 1 Corinthians which I have included from the Amplified version of the Bible:
- Love endures long
- and is patient and kind;
- love never is envious
- nor boils over with jealousy,
- is not boastful or vainglorious,
- does not display itself haughtily.
- It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride);
- it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly.
- Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way,
- for it is not self-seeking;
- it is not touchy or fretful or resentful;
- it takes no account of the evil done to it
- [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].
- It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.
- Love bears up under anything and everything that comes,
- is ever ready to believe the best of every person,
- its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances,
- and it endures everything [without weakening].
- Love never fails
- [never fades out
- or becomes obsolete
- or comes to an end].
So the challenge is to find the central big picture themes of the Bible first and then use them to help interpret the rest of the Bible details. Study the the Bible detail truths only in context using the knowledge of the greater big picture truths to help us to undertand the details. What I am trying to say is if Jesus is the central thene for the entire Bible, then use your knowlede of Jesus to help you interpret all of the other verses in the Bible that appear not to be about Jesus. You might think that this doesn’t sound that difficult to do, but you will soon discover after much study that things on the surface are not always as easy as you might have thought at first. We will continue talking about this subject of Correct Bible Interpretation in a future lesson. God Bless.
Here is an interesting topic to consider when thinking about keys to understanding the Bible. One of the keys to understanding the Bible is understanding the systems and methods that God uses in our everyday lives. The Bible says God is not willing that any should perish, so we know that God wants everyone to be saved. So what is He doing to solve this problem, how does God try to reach people and get them to believe and know Him? That is a question I think many have never thought of. God is of course capable of solving the atheist and agnostic beliefs in everyone in an instance of time, by suddenly appearing and proving His existence. Why didn’t Jesus when He rose from the dead, go to everyone and prove His existence? Why did He only appear to a select few? If He would have walked into the synagogue in Jerusalem, every Jew would have had no choice but to believe on the one that they crucified. There would have been an instant establishment of a kingdom of God on the earth. There would have been no room for any other religion in the world. But, God chooses to do things differently. God has implemented a system based around people. Throughout the Bible we see that God selected certain individuals to bring His message to the rest of the people. We can see this in the life of Moses, Joshua, David, Daniel, Isaiah, Ezekiel, etc. Here is a verse that demonstrates God’s system to us:
Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
God created a faith based system of beliefs for the human race. We can see in this verse that it speaks of people calling on God to save them. But how can they call if they haven’t heard of Him. No one has ever seen God so we are all in the same boat. We can clearly see a reference in this verse to the human element in God’s plan of salvation. We can see that unless men and women preach and teach about God and His ways, no one will be able to hear, no one will be able to believe, and therefore no one will be saved. The weakest link in the chain is people. God has left the process in the hands of people. Those that teach the Word of God have been called by God, selected by God, given the responsibility by God to get His message out. No man or woman on this planet can save anyone, yet God has chosen a system that is totally dependent upon people who are imperfect and capable of failing. On one hand you can see that God is either crazy or He has great faith in the ability of His Word to accomplish change in the hearts of men.
Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
We can see in Ephesians 4:11 that the verse contains one key repetitive word, this word is “SOME”. Some means not everybody, it could even mean a few, as in a small percentage. The key emphasis is that not everyone has the same function, the same level of responsibility, the same knowledge, the same spiritual growth level, the same whatever. God selected some people to specifically teach His Word. That implies the rest are responsible to learn what is taught. If everyone was a teacher no one would need to be taught, no one would need to teach. If everyone knew everything God wouldn’t need to say anything.
So the point to today’s blog is for you to recognize that God uses people. Just as he did throughout the Bible. We can see David the giant slayer, Samson, even Saul of Taurus, who wrote 2/3 of the New Testament. God has always selected specific men and women to get His message out to His people. This is still happening today, your challenge should you choose to accept it is to recognize those whom God has sent and ignore those that just went. So understanding the Bible will depend upon you understanding how God works and the systems that He has implemented and working with Him to accomplish His goals and purposes. I hope this has been a blessing to you.
(Ver 1.1) When it comes to Bible interpretation and understanding the Bible, did you know it matters how you search the Bible? Did you also realize it matters what you search for in the Bible? You can apply this same principal to searching for gold or oil under the earth’s crust. Does it matter where you drill for oil? Does it matter what type of soil you are drilling through? Does it matter how deep you go? Could you drill a mile down and miss the oil by 10 feet? You know natural things say you can do the right thing but do it the wrong way or at the wrong time, or at the wrong place and the net results will be as if you had done nothing at all. There is a biblical principal or as I call it a spiritual law that applies to us and how we search the Bible and what we search for in the Bible. Jesus said “He who seeks will find”.
Matthew 7:7 Ask and it shall be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you.
This Bible truth tells you something that is so profound yet it can be so easily missed. What you seek after is what you find. The clear implication to this verse is that it matters what you are seeking after? It matters what you are asking for? It matters what doors you knock on. It makes a huge difference to what you find. If you search for the wrong thing in the Bible you will find the wrong thing. It is a spiritual law from God. There lies the primary problem of people searching the Bible just to prove something is true. Instead of just looking for the truth, people search and look for scripture to support their opinion or their position or what they think it says or what they think they heard someone say. I’ve seen people search the scriptures and give references to why they think abortion is OK scripturally and they supported their position based upon their findings in the Bible. Any idiot can find scriptures that support whatever position they want to take but that doesn’t mean it’s the truth and what God intended for us to follow. Always start by reading the Bible and asking God to reveal to you the truth and refuse to allow your pre-conceived ideas or opinions to sway or influence your search.
So the bottom line is this, it matters what you are searching for. If you are searching for the wrong things, God said that you will find the wrong things. If you search for the right things, God will make sure you find the right things. So what you find is determined by what you are searching for and not so much as what is really there. This might not make much sense to you, I don’t know. However, people have proven this repeatedly. Jesus didn’t lie, he who seeks will find. He who knocks it will be opened to him and it doesn’t matter if he is knocking on the wrong door. Make sure you are seeking the right things and knocking on only God’s doors. So why is this law possible? If the Bible contains the truth, why can’t we just read it and understand it. It really all goes back to a recent Blog I did where I told you that God wrote the Bible in a fashion or style that would allow man to make a choice. You see if the Bible was explicitly written in a textbook style, man would have NO other choice but to believe it. Understanding some of these key principles and spiritual laws of how to study the Bible will help you gain a much clearer understanding of God’s word, if you truly apply them.
(Ver 2.0) Here is an interesting statement to ponder. People generally don’t know what they don’t know. I don’t remember where I heard that statement for the first time or if I got it from God. I just realized that it was the truth. It is certainly related to another subject that people are generally resistant to change. In one of my last blogs on this subject I talked about the importance of having an open mind as being a key to understanding new things in the Bible. Change is inevitable, but most of the time people like the status quo and are creatures of habit. They learn something and then live it out on a daily basis, being repetitive and finding it hard to accept something new. These days technology is changing so fast, that you either have to live in a cave somewhere to not realize that what you have today will be obsolete tomorrow.
Now back to what people know. What makes one man a doctor and another man a homeless bum. The main difference is knowledge. One has extended an effort to learn and knows how to help other people and the other one lacks this knowledge and motivation to obtain and use the knowledge. In effect he doesn’t know what he doesn’t know. You know one thing I noted about doctors was that it appeared people who learned a lot to be a doctor are more readily able to accept that there is so much more to learn. People who know little to nothing sometimes come across as the kind of people who talk the loudest and think they know everything they need to know. The doctor is usually smart enough to know when his expertise is exhausted and he needs to call in a specialist that knows more than he does. These are all examples and lessons that can be easily applied to us and the Bible, knowing the Bible, understanding the Bible and applying the Bible to our lives. Because people don’t know what the Bible says, when God sends a teacher with something new they resist it automatically, they criticize the speaker, they do stupid things that result in the rejection of Jesus himself. When Saul persecuted the early church and he threw them into jail, beat them and stoned them, Jesus took that very personally. Here we have an example of Saul not knowing what he didn’t know. Being raised a Jew under the law he thought he was doing all the right things. This is a very strong lesson for all of us to learn from even today. God is not through with teaching His people new things so you need to be open to hear it and to accept it. You need to keep your stones in your pockets and quit throwing them at God’s chosen servants.
Act 5:38 And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought:
Act 5:39 But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.
Be as one of the wisest men in the Bible did, choose to keep your mouth shut and tell the others that if it is of God it will grow and prosper, if it is not of God it will die. This man knew to fight against God was a very foolish thing to do. If you read the verses prior to this statement, he gives examples of men who rose up with false messages and how they came to naught. It is very much like the story of Balaam in the Old Testament, he said “How can I curse what God has blessed”. This is a lesson for STUPID Christians in the world who are fighting against God’s servants. Learn the lesson given in Acts 5 and ignore false teachers. Do not attack false teachers, if they are from God they will prosper, if they are not from God they will come to nothing. It is not up to you to put it down, God has not appointed anyone as the watch dog of the Theology that men are preaching and teaching. The main reason for this, is the fact that you just do not know what you do not know. So if someone comes around teaching something new, it could very well be of God and thus you will not be able to stop it. If it is not of God, then it will die of its own self destruction. Learn this lesson and it will cause you to be much wiser.
Here is a natural example of what I’m talking about today, of not knowing what you don’t know. Say you are traveling down a dark highway in the middle of the night. You are going along with little to no traffic on the road. Up ahead a tragic accident happened and a barge hit the bridge and took the bridge completely out. If you continue at your current speed in the dark you will soon come upon the missing span and be unable to stop and plunge into the river. What is the lesson of this story? The lesson is you don’t know what you don’t know. You don’t know the bridge is out. You don’t know you are about to die. If you only had a flashing warning sign or cop in the road with flashing lights and a flashlight flagging the oncoming traffic down to stop you have a chance at being saved. Otherwise, you are doomed to go to a tragic outcome in this life. This is generally symbolic representation a true story of the situation of the world today. We have a tremendous number of people traveling on the road that Jesus called the road to destruction. This road is wide and long and many people will go that way not knowing the outcome that the symbolic bridge is out. But God has sent certain individuals into the world to draw attention to the fact that the bridge is out and to try to warn them. Jesus said that those who believe it will be saved and those that don’t believe will be damned. Those are tremendously important words to consider today. Try to figure out what you don’t know, because it just might save your life someday.
(Ver 1.2) I’ve seen many pastors and teachers attempt to go through a book of the Bible and teach it independently verse by verse. While you can certainly learn stuff by doing this, is this really the best way to approach the Word of God? In my opinion it is not. For example, take the book of Revelation. Probably the most complex, confusing and hard to understand book in the Bible. I’ve seen teachers stand up and attempt to do a verse by verse walk thru of this book in isolation and the end result is usually just more confusion. When you teach even a single verse of scripture independently of the rest of the Bible, many times you miss God’s commentary on the subject. I believe one of the keys to understanding the Bible is letting the Bible interpret itself. You do this by getting God’s definitions and commentary on all of the subjects that you are studying. When you do this, you have a much better chance of getting it right. For example, in books like Revelation that is filled with symbolism, you absolutely have to let the Bible define what these symbols mean or you will get it wrong.
Many times people are guilty of introducing their own opinions into what the Word of God means. God being so much smarter than us, knew we would do that, but yet did not make the information in the Bible any clearer or easier for us to understand. There must have been a reason for that and I’ve addressed some of those in other lessons. One of the reasons was to allow man to have the freedom of choice. Another reason was to hide information from His enemies. Finally, I think another reason was to give us a challenge to figure it out and allow God the opportunity to reveal it at His perfect timing. It’s funny but humans are naturally curious and they like puzzles, riddles and intellectual challenges. God did not create humanity to be cave men, they were just created ignorant of so, so many things. Ignorance is a reality for everyone. No matter how much you learn and know, you haven’t come close to what God knows. Will Rogers said “We are all ignorant, just about different things.” How incredibly true that statement is.
The information, clues, explanations and commentaries of God are spread throughout the Bible. Sometimes or many times they are very difficult to find. We are faced with challenges because God uses various techniques to conceal information in the Bible and I will get more into them in other lessons. One technique that God uses is symbolism. Another is allegory. Another technique is calling one object by many different names and descriptions. Another technique is to call multiple objects by the same name making it more difficult for you to figure out which one God is talking about. There are many other techniques that God uses to hide the truth and I call this “hiding the truth in plain sight.” The truth is all right there for anyone to view and read, but yet it causes so much debate as to what it all really means. Isn’t this fun? You see the other day I did a search on the just one subject on the internet. I searched Google for “The Identity of the Woman in Revelation 12” and guess what I was returned with over 6000 opinions what she meant. That is a classic of example of how 6000 different people can have 6000 different interpretations on what God calls only one truth.
So is it a good idea to teach the Bible verse by verse, I guess it depends on how you do it. If you research, study and see what God says about a subject in other places in the Bible and include that also in the teaching I would say that it would be OK to do it that way. If however, you isolate yourself into a verse, chapter or book of the Bible and teach it independently of what God says about it in other places, then you are making a huge mistake. Don’t become a Robinson Caruso Bible teacher and strand yourself on a verse island. When you do this you will eventually starve your spirit, which will cause you die of spiritual malnutrition. I hope you enjoyed my little Bible lesson about teaching in isolation and that it will help you to learn more about God’s Word.
This will obviously be controversial to some. But nevertheless this is what God says so I stand by it. What I have been attempting to do is give you some keys to understanding the Bible. If we can understand God’s intentions, motivations and purposes for the book, we will better understand what is written. So in today’s blog I want to give you another perspective of why the Bible is so hard to understand, to many. This principle is based upon the concept that God has enemies and that in order for God not reveal everything to His enemies, He has to write things in an encoded method. , This encoded method allows God’s people to see the truth while at the same time keeping the information from His enemies. It is a very tricky way of writing with many complex twists, mysteries, hidden meanings, symbolic representations and other tricky methods. I call it God’s method of hiding the truth in plain site.
James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosever therefore will be a friend to the world is the enemy of God.
From this verse in James we see a fact revealed that God has enemies. If you didn’t know that it would be good to study and find out who those enemies are. I’ve heard some fools think and teach that Satan was just a pawn of God. A spirit being that appears before God to get permission to make somebody sick or kill their children. People read things like in the book of Job and make too many assumptions. Satan is not working for God. Satan doesn’t have to ask for permission to put some evil plan into work against you. Most of the time it is our own fault when Satan attacks us. We open the door to the enemy and let him do the things he does. There are a lot of Bible verses that I could give you to back that statement, but I won’t spend a lot of time on that subject since that is not what we are talking about.
This may also be news to some of you and maybe you’ve never heard anyone teach on this, but God has enemies. The church has the same enemies. Satan is still a spiritual force in the world in opposition to the church and our God. Satan I think sometimes people look at him as this evil red suited, horned and pitch fork carrying spiritual entity that resides in hell and comes to earth to bug us when he wants to. Nothing could be further from the truth. Satan does not live in hell, he has never been to hell, doesn’t want to go to hell and he’s doing everything in his power to stay out of there. But there is good news Satan doesn’t know everything. He can read the same Bible that we can but he doesn’t understand it any better than anyone else in the world. As God gives new revelation to the church, that is the first time Satan hears about most of this stuff. There are scriptures that back this up. Look at this verse:
1 Corinthians 2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew for had they known they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
You see from this verse that Satan and his fallen angels are ignorant of the plan of God. This verse says clearly if they had known the consequences to killing God on the cross, they would not have done it. So apparently we don’t yet fully comprehend the ramifications and consequences of God being nailed to the cross. Not only did He provide salvation for us, he sealed the fate of Satan. Interesting isn’t it? So when Jesus said I didn’t come to do away with the law but to fulfill it he was saying that he was here to fulfill those things which were written about him.
Luke 24:44 And he said unto them, These are they words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses and in the prophets, and in the psalms concerning me.
John 5:39 Search the scriptures for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
So couldn’t Satan read the Bible and see and hear what was being said in the synagogues? Sure he could, the problem is he didn’t understand anything that was written and neither did any man. Jesus fulfilled countless prophesies in his birth, life, death, burial and resurrection and Satan didn’t know any of them. I can only assume that Satan thought by killing God he could rid him from his planet and now he could go on and continue to rule for as long as he wanted. These are all interesting thoughts but these concepts are also applicable to the unsaved human race. Notice what is written on this subject and the words spoken by Jesus himself:
Mark 4:11 And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables.
Jesus speaking to his disciples said the mystery is for only you to know, those that are on the outside they will never know or understand the things of God. It has always occurred to me that people in hell don’t know why they are there. They don’t have a clue that Jesus paid for their sins and they rejected the free gift of salvation. I wonder if someday they will come to the knowledge and realize the things they missed out on. So were we enemies of God before salvation? Here is a scripture that says we were:
Romans 5:10 For if, we when we were enemies , we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled we shall be saved by his life.
So we discover a fact that God said that while we were still enemies, Jesus paid the price to reconcile us back to God. This of course was one of the primary reasons for the death of Jesus on the cross. Clearly it was not all that transpired, but I’m sure glad He did that for us.
So what can we conclude from all of these scriptures? If God had enemies, He was forced to conceal information in His Word in a manner that His enemies would not understand what He was doing that would effect them. We will eventually discuss the methods in more depth that God used to accomplish this, but that is enough for now.
I’ve been going through some of the key elements that people need to know in order to understand the Bible correctly. Knowing how the Bible is written and why it is written like it is helps us to better understand what is written. Seeing things clearly and thus better understanding God’s goals and purposes. So continuing in this line of thought I want to address a key personal characteristic that will help you to increase your understanding.
Reading and studying the Bible has to be done with an open mind. What I mean by that is people who are already set in what they believe, will have an extremely difficult time learning about and accepting the truth. People who are indoctrinated with traditions of their church, the theological thoughts and concepts of error will probably never really understand the Bible. I’ve heard those types of people as being called “Concrete” Christians, thoroughly mixed up and firmly set. Think about it, why did Jesus go around and constantly say “let him who has ears, hear”. Apparently, what people received from him was not up to what he dealt out or said. Jesus put the responsibility of hearing on the hearer and not the speaker. You can say the most profound and important thing in the world and if no one cares to hear it, then it really does no good to say it. Some heard what Jesus said and some didn’t. Judas was with Jesus the same as Peter, James and John. Judas obviously didn’t hear anything Jesus said.
Acts 28:27 For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart, and should be converted and I should heal them.
This is probably one of the key scriptures to Bible interpretation that many wouldn’t associate with it. But I feel the application is right on. So what is the subject of this verse in Acts 28:27? It would appear it is the heart of the people and their ability or inability to understand with it. Isn’t that what we are talking about? Why don’t people read the same Bible and come to the same conclusions? Why do some see things one way and others don’t see them at all? It is a perplexing puzzle? But the Bible tells us that people close their eyes to the truth and they therefore refuse to see it or allow it to effect their lives. It is not God’s fault is it? Unfortunately, a lot of people want a God on their terms and conditions. They want a God that they want. The want to see a God that fits their concept of God. That is the definition of religion whether you realize it or not. Religion is man’s attempt to please a God they don’t know. Christianity should be radically different than a religion. Christianity is based upon a relationship with the Creator. Here is another scripture from the book of Acts that speaks to the subject of being open minded:
Acts 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily whether those things were so.
This verse speaks so very much that it should not be bypassed. It directly compares two different groups or types of people. One was said to be more noble than the other. Nobility is a term often times inferred upon royalty, kings and queens. The word “noble” literally means “of a higher rank”. Did you realize that your rank in Christ can grow or diminish? It is all up to you however. What made these more noble than the others. It tells us they had a ready and willing mind. I’ve often heard a mind described like a parachute, it only works when it is open and engaged. This is so true that God put direct conformation in his word. But also notice that these more noble ones just didn’t swallow anything anyone was teaching them. No, you see an incredibly important lesson given here for the entire church of God. This is an example to learn from and to follow. It tells us that they searched the scriptures daily to see for themselves if what was being taught was really what the Bible says. So whoever is teaching, including me you should do the same. Never accept the words of any man or woman unless it totally agrees with the word of God.
So what is the net, net, or bottom line of this blog? What is the primary take away? I’ve heard it called low hanging fruit. What you should take away may be an attitude adjustment. If your attitude is that you already know everything you need to know about the Bible you need to change. If you hear something new that you’ve never heard before, you should be open to at least research it in the Bible and study it out for yourself before you reject it. That is one of the most obvious problems that I have observed with many pastors and Bible teachers today. God raises up someone with a new focus on a part of his word and because it doesn’t fit what they learned in seminary, they automatically throw it under the bus, not knowing they just threw God under the bus with it. How can God get over something new if no one is open to hear it. How can God teach you something radically different when you think it is from the devil?
The eyes and ears are windows to your mind and to your spirit. In order to get things into your heart, you are going to have to leave your windows open and get them past your mind. The mind is the battle ground for Satan. If you let something in your eyes and your ears, Satan will come immediately to steal it by attacking your mind. If he can get you to reject it before you understand it with your heart, you are defeated and he has won. This is a spiritual battle and it takes place inside of you. If you learn about it and understand how he works you can use it to defeat him.
God created natural things to give us views into spiritual things. Jesus taught us in the parable of the sower, that there are six types of or conditions of the human heart. Only 50% of these six types produced any lasting harvest. Jesus told us that of he 50% who produced good fruit, that 1/3 of them produced 30 times, 1/3 produced 60 times and the other 1/3 produced 100 times. But, we can see that the other 1/2 of the people who also heard, allowed circumstances, persecution, lack of understanding and the cares of the world kill the harvests that God had wanted to give them. It is interesting to note that they all had the same seed sown in them, but only 1/2 produced anything worth while. We should all take note that the seed is constant, it is only the soil that changed what was produced and how much. This is a very critical lesson to learn. The seed or Word of God will never change, so that leaves only one place that changes can and should occur. Guess where that is?
So getting back to natural things showing us spiritual things, there is a comparison given to us in the Bible about Christians being born again. Jesus told us in John 3, “ye must be born again.” He of course was speaking of a spiritual rebirth. When Nicodemus asked him can a man go back into his mother’s womb? Jesus replied that “What is born of flesh is flesh, but what is born of the spirit is spirit”. Jesus was speaking of a spiritual birth process, that many times corresponds to a physical birth process. What are the implications of being born spiritually? You can see by looking at new born natural babies that these children are completely helpless and totally dependent upon someone else for nourishment and care. Well even though new born Christians can be fully grown natural people, from a spiritual stand point they need the same level of care that any new born needs.
As babies grow, they begin to develop more and more skills and abilities. By the time they are 4 years old they can do a lot of things that grown ups can do, but just not as quickly or as well. With continued training and development these children will eventually become responsible adults. So all of these physical developments are analogous to spiritual development. Just like a college student can not have a calculus conversation with a 2 year old, so are there many things in the Bible that are as equally as hard for a new Christian to accept. By realizing there are differences and by placing yourself somewhere on the following scale, you should be able to determine how much you need to grow.
So where would you fall on the scale? Zero being a new Christian and 9 being where Jesus is today. It think we all are striving for the 9, but none of us are very close to it yet. What does all of this have to do with Bible interpretation and understanding the Bible. Well more than you can imagine. Most of the dissension within the Body of Christ is coming from baby Christians. Babies holler the most, cry the most, complain the most, ask why the most and oblivious to what they are doing to others. Babies are self centered and focused only upon themselves and what they need or what they want. Children do many things that are harmful and hurtful without regard to anyone else. They’ll take toys away and bite and fight not caring about anyone else. Sounds like a lot of Christians I know. When a two year old comes to me and criticizes something that I do, I don’t let that bother me. Why because I’m older and I know they don’t know any better. It is funny, Jesus took the same attitude towards the Jews, while hanging on the cross, Jesus said “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.”. It is no different today, when someone criticizes me for something I say, I just say “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”
(Ver 2.1) Today’s Bible lesson is Part 1 in a series of lessons on understanding truth in the Bible. This of course is a very difficult and tricky question to answer correctly. How do you approach this subject without offending someone? Too many people approach the Bible like every word came from the mouth of God and therefore the entire book is completely true from cover to cover. I am forced to disagree with that assumption but before you write me off, you should hear why. You see, I do know that God is the author of the Bible and every word it contains was inspired by Him for us. But is everything in the Bible the truth? That would be like asking is everything you watch on the ABC World News the truth? I don’t mean to say that the national news correspondent is intentionally trying to mislead us or lie to us. That is not what I’m saying at all. You see, if you’ve ever watched the news, you probably know what I’m going to say. You may remember when we had a president get up on the news and say ‘I did not have sex with that intern’. So was that the truth? Did it make it true because it was on national TV or reported by a popular news anchor on a respected news program? You see the problem, don’t you? The Bible has many quotes from similarly unethical and ignorant people and just because it is in the Bible doesn’t mean it is the truth.
This is in fact a very important and a key element to correct Bible interpretation, first determine who is speaking and then determine what their character and moral background is before you embrace what they say to be the truth. If they are the words directly from God, like it says” Thus saith the LORD”; or if they are the words in red ink in the New Testament from Jesus, or the words of one of God’s chosen prophets or apostles then it can be easily confirmed to be the truth. If however, Moses, David, Paul, John or Luke or whoever, quotes what somebody else said like Ananias or Sapphira in Acts 5, then it is very possible that what is said is not the truth. Again it depends upon the speaker. If the speaker is Satan for example, whatever is said could be a partial truth, the complete truth or a complete fabricated lie. So it definitely matters who is speaking before you can judge whether it is a truth or not.
In the book of Job, in the Old Testament it contains a lot of words from Job, Job’s wife and Job’s friends. Now while there are many valuable lessons in the book of Job, not every word spoken is the truth. You see here is Job’s problem, he didn’t have any Bible. He couldn’t understand most of the things of God. He couldn’t really know or understand what he was saying, after all what would it have been based upon? There is not any established basis for the thoughts of Job. For example, Job said “God has given and God has taken away.” I’ve heard preachers in church and at funerals stand up and quote this like it was God speaking. However that is not the truth. It is true Job said it, it is true it is in the Bible, it is true that God inspired someone to record what he said, but it is not a statement of truth. I’m sure I’m going to get a lot people upset at me for saying this, but this is the way the Bible was written. If you read later in the book of Job 38:2, you will see that God asks Job a simple but direct question and it says this “Who is this that darkens counsel with words without knowledge?” It is very clear to me that God is saying that at least some of Job’s words are baseless ramblings from an ignoarant man. Yes, Job believed they were true and was not intentionally deceiving anyone, but according to God they were just the words of an ignornat man. So you must judge what Job says by what God says about Job’s words and then and only then will we better understand the Bible. According to 2 Timothy 2:15 there is a right way to divide the Word of Truth and by reverse/antithesis implied truths there are also potentially many wrong ways to divide this exact same Words of Truth. You have to make a determination how you want to do it. You can do it your way or you can do it God’s way. The Bible is much more complex than you can imagine and there are specific rules and guidelines which God has given to us to follow and if you learn them and follow them you will not fall into error very often.
So if the Bible contains specific historical information such as names of cities, countries, dates, times, and people can we count on them to be accurate? Absolutely, the Bible is not a book of mythology, fables, fairy tales or man made legends like Paul Bunyan, Atlas or Methuselah. The Bible contains actual historical events, places and people. You can count on every one of them to be more accurate than any text book or history book you had in school. God knows exactly what happened when and where.
If the Bible has an account of some miraculous event transpiring in a supernatural story, like the parting of the Red Sea, can we rely on that as being a true fact within human history. Absolutely, people who don’t believe in God will of course try to convince you that this is fiction, but I know better. God who is capable of creating the world and everything we can see, is certainly capable of doing something on a much smaller scale that is still very spectacular.
Knowing how to read and study the Bible will greatly increase your understanding of God’s Word. Understanding that not every word in the Bible is the Truth will help you figure out what is the truth. You do realize that if everything in the Bible was the truth, it would not be necessary to “divide the truth”. What is a division? A division is a separation of one thing from another thing. To divide something entails effort, work, tools, study and understanding. If you were a doctor about to do surgery on someone you are about to cut them open or divide their flesh to look inside. If you don’t know what you are doing your patient is in trouble. Well dividing the word of God is somewhat similar, if you don’t know what you are doing, you are the patient that is in trouble.
If you would like to continue reading about Understanding Truth in the Bible please go to “Part 2“.
(Ver 1.1) This of course is an interesting question. Technically speaking you have 66 books of text within the standard KJV Bible. We know that approximately 40 different men shared in the writing of the Bible over a span of approximately 1600 years.
Here are some basic Bible facts that I found on the Internet:
There are 8,674 different Hebrew words in the Bible, 5,624 different Greek words, and 12,143 different English words in the King James Version
- Number of books in the KJV Bible: 66
- Chapters: 1,189
- Verses: 31,101
- Words: 783,137
- Letters: 3,566,480
So let me ask you a simple question. What would happen if you attempted to get 40 different writers together in order to publish a book of such volume. What would the net results be? Could you get any of them to agree? How many times would they contradict each other? How many times would they cross paths and overlap information? How many times would they come up with anything that could predict what was going to come to pass a 1000 or more years in the future? I think you see the problem? Here we have a book that many approach with wrong assumptions, based upon wrong information, drawing incorrect conclusions and are generally just screwed up. I’ve heard so many people who want to write an exposition of why Paul said this, or Moses said that, like it was their ability and knowledge that produced what we are reading. If you approach the Bible with wrong ideas, you generally get back wrong ideas. There is a basic computer programming law that says if you put garbage in you get garbage out. That is the way the studying the Bible works.
What you first must do is understand who wrote the Bible? Establish a correct focus first. Forget the names of the 40 different men that copied the words onto the pages or scrolls I should say. Forget the commentaries of men who don’t understand or have a clue what God is saying and focus on this, God spoke and dictated the exact text and words that He wanted recorded and He gave the task of recording these words to 40 men over 1600 years. Now that changes everything in my view. Now you are not attempting to explain why Moses wrote anything that he did and left out other things that were not recorded. If you approach every word as being important and a word directly from God that has purpose and meaning you start looking at the Bible differently and can now begin to see it correctly.
2Ti 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
Jer 30:2 Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.
According to 2 Timothy 3:16, the Bible was inspired by the Spirit of God. I guess it actually says given by inspiration of the Spirit of God. While the Bible has multiple scribes or men that were given the task to record the words of God in book form, we must realize that all of the words were given and inspired directly from God. This book says nothing that God would not want you to know and to understand right here and right now. It doesn’t say anything that God wouldn’t say to you if you could stand before His throne in heaven and ask Him questions directly. This book contains the thoughts, ideas, wisdom and knowledge of God and is available to you 24 hours a day. It is totally up to you to tap into this vast treasure of information.
(Ver 1.4) This of course is a very difficult subject for many Christians to accept or acknowledge. So many Christians struggle with believing the concept that God would intentionally hide important information from us. How could a loving God ever keep us from easily finding that which He desires us to learn and know? I once heard a minister say that studying the Bible is like a natural man searching for natural gold and I found that I could really not improve on that analogy so I’ll use it to help you understand how the Bible was written by God’s design. If you’ve ever panned for gold in Colorado or California you will have already discovered how difficult it was to find anything of significant value on the surface. I tried it but I came up empty even after several attempts when I was in Colorado, I guess it was fun, but it would have certainly been better if I had left with something that I could have said WOW, look at this!!! Look at what I found. This is a lot like reading the Bible and many do it everyday, but never walk away with the WOW, look at this. “Look what I found in the Word of God”. Why is that? There are probably a lot of reasons and I cover many of them in this Blog. Here is a verse of scripture about God and it describes a characteristic of His nature that must be understood if you are going to be a serious student of the Bible:
Proverbs 25:2 It is the glory of God to conceal a thing, but the honor of kings is to search out a matter.
What an amazing statement of universal truth. This verse clearly states that God is glorified by Him hiding information for us to find. Oh yes, I should have told you first that we are the kings and priests of God that He is referring to in this verse. Jesus is called the King of kings and the Lord of lords (Rev 19:16). The reference to “kings” is us! I know that bugs the heck out of religious people, but please get over it see what the Bible says.
Like digging for gold in the natural world so it is in the spiritual world with the Word of God. People don’t usually find many big gold nuggets of truth on the surface of God’s Word by just reading the it. There we must ask, how do we find them? We find them by digging deep for them. It involves work and that is a four-letter word to many. Proverbs 25:2 said that the honor of kings was in the searching of the information. Searching involves effort and that is spelled W O R K! There is a lot of information that can be found on the surface of reading the Bible, but the really good stuff is always found much deeper within the text. Did you ever notice the world’s largest gold producers are finding most of the valuable stuff deep underground using tunnels, blasting, digging and a whole bunch of effort. Occasionally they might find a large vein and strike it very rich by digging deep. Bible study is the exact same thing. I noticed this scripture in the Old Testament that confirms that God has secrets:
Amos 3:7 Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he reveal his secret unto his servants the prophets.
This verse informs us that God has secrets, but it also says that God will not do anything without first revealing his secrets to His servants, His prophets. That tells me the Old and New Testaments both have the potential of an extraordinary number of hidden secrets of God. Some we have discovered and most that we have not yet found.
Proverbs 1:23 Turn you at my reproof: behold I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.
God says in this verse in Proverbs that He will make known His words after He has poured out His Spirit. We can see that the work involves the Holy Spirit. We can also see the clear implication that the meanings of the words must be hidden if God is going to make them known. You see we have had these words recorded for us to read for thousands of years. But yet the implication is that there is still more to know. Many will try to explain this away as having happened back with the apostles. But that event was only the former rain and now is the time of the later rain. Now is when God is again pouring out His Spirit unto men. Now is the time for the harvest. There are so many scriptures that tells us the same information, here is one from the book of Daniel:
Daniel 2:20 Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: 21 And he changed the times and the seasons: he removes kings and sets up kings: he gives wisdom unto the wise and knowledge to them that know understanding. 22 He reveals the deep and secret things: he knows what is in the darkness and light dwells with him.
You see from these verses that God is the one that holds all wisdom and that He gives it to us so that we can become wise. But verse 22 says the main point of this Blog, God reveals the deep and secret things to us. A “Deep” thing is an implied truth that is not easily understood or seen. These are very strong statements of truth and teach us a lot about the Bible. It tells us that everything in the Bible is not shallow and easy to find or understand. It implies that there is an extended effort and a commitment necessary from those who want to find these “deep” secrets. Let’s jump into the New Testament and look at another verse:
1 Corinthians 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the world unto our glory.
Here we read another verse that declares God has hidden things in the Bible and it even refers to them as mysteries. What is a mystery? A mystery to me would be a complex puzzle, a code, riddle or something that is not plain or obvious. If you could look at it and immediately know what it was, it wouldn’t be a mystery would it? So apparently if you haven’t figured it out, the Bible is written in a style that conceals many things and makes hidden much of the knowledge, understanding and wisdom of God.
Romans 16:25 Now to him that is of power to establish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began.
This is another great example of the fact that God hid the revelation of Jesus Christ from the very beginning of our created world. We can observer clearly in this verse that God must reveal this information to us in the form of a revelation given to us in this instance by the writer Paul. If you didn’t know it, there are still Pauls in the world today that God uses. God is revealing things, giving revelation to many within the body of Christ and all you have to do is recognize it when you hear it. Yes, there will be false teachers, prophets and etc. in this world But, the Word of God will always be correct when rightly divided. Judge what people say by the Bible. So we can see so many verses that declare that the Bible contains the mysteries and secrets of God, here is just one more:
Colossians 1:26 Even the mystery which has been hid from ages and from generations, now is made manifest to his saints.
This is a fantastic verse if you are one of God’s saints. For if you are a saint of God then this verse assures that you are potentially destined to know these hidden secrets. The implication is clearly given that they are intended for God’s saints to know and understand. Some will attempt to explain, that was only for them, the early church and not for us now. I can hear it all now. But there is no way it is not for us right here and right now. This is what Jesus said about the secret things of God:
Luke 8:17 For nothing is secret that shall not be made manifest: neither anything hid that shall not be known and come abroad.
This is of course a little difficult to see in the King James version of the Bible, but it basically says that there is nothing that was hidden or secret that will not be made known or revealed so that we can see them, understand them and know them. That is a powerful prophecy and the words of God himself speaking. Has this occurred yet? I really only think we have scratched the surface of this prophecy, but I believe it will be fulfilled before Jesus’ return. You of course can believe whatever you like. You might ask how can this be, is it possible that the body of Christ could unify and see the truth? I think it is possible if we allow God to do it. This scripture in Daniel shows us what God is capable of by just one Old Testament prophet:
Daniel 2:47 The king answered unto Daniel, and said, Of a truth it is that your God is a God of gods and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets seeing that thou could reveal this secret.
So the King of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar recognized the power of God. By God revealing a bit of information to him the king was convinced that he was the true God. You see God just has to reveal a few key things to get people to see and He knows what those are. I believe that is why we will see major changes in attitudes and major changes in the true church of the living God.
So what have we seen? That the Bible contains mysteries, secrets, riddles and puzzles that God is starting to reveal to us in these end times. If you start looking for them, and expecting them to happen, God will make sure that they do happen. But since there are so many false teachings going around, here is what the Bible recommends for us to do:
Acts 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
You should follow this example of the early church. Be open to hear and learn, but search God’s Word everyday to see if they are really true. Don’t buy into anything I say or anything anyone else says just because they said “Thus saith the Lord” or I have a revelation from God. Too many ignorant people have done that and burned or died in a compound when their leader suddenly said it was time for them all to die. God can and will show us if what is being taught is true or not in His word if we stop and ask and listen to His leading. If God doesn’t bear witness within your own spirit that its right, reject it and run far away very fast. Just remember that God still expects us all to search and work for it and to see what His word says. God will reward them that diligently, meticulously, conscientiously, thoroughly seek Him. It will be up to you, what you learn in these last days, more than it will be up to God. Thank you for reading these Bible lessons and I pray that they are all a blessing to you. Please tell someone about this website and help the Gospel go forth to as many as we can reach.
(Ver 1.2) This Bible lesson may be a brand new perspective for you and it just may be something that you may have never considered to think on. Have you ever studied the many different writing styles of books? College text books are written radically differently than fictional literature. Technical writings and software documentation are written consderibly different than a President’s biography. Realizing that there are so many different writing styles, let me ask you what literature style is the Bible written in? I believe that is an interesting and very important question to consider. From my research and study I’ve discovered that the Bible is significantly different than anything else that I’ve ever read. I believe that this makes it difficult to label it as just one writing style and say that it is only that one. For example Psalms many times resembles a poetry writing style but it certainly cannot be labeled that alone because it contains so much more than that alone.
It is almost easier to determine what the Bible is not rather than to try to assign it a specific style. For example, the Bible was certainly not written in a text book style using technical documentation methods. However, the Bible does contain great technical information about creation. Why didn’t God write these creation facts, events, descriptions and dates using more revealing, plain and indisputable evidence? Do you think that God is not capable of describing all of the little creation design intricate details of DNA, Sound Waves, Laws of Physics, etc. using the scientific terms involved and the background proof data behind every part of His creation? Can God not compete intellectually with the modern PHD professors in our colleges and universities? Are the scientific discoveries and the theories of men superior to God? Do believe that God not able to dispel the theory of human evolution using His knowledge of creation?
I personally believe that God’s intelligence is so far beyond the Einstein’s in our world that He could solve the debate with only a few lines of specific information. But, if He did that, what would be the end result of that type of information? It would be like the classic movie “The Day the Earth Stood Still”, when the man from another world went to the professor’s house and solved a very complex technical equation on the chalk board, that the professor had been trying to figure out for a long time. What that information did was take away any doubt that he was not from this planet and that he was much smarter than the professor and anyone else in the world.
If God provides us undeniable evidence that proves His awesome power, knowledge and ability to us all, the net result would be that every human man would no longer have any other option but to believe what God says is truth. I believe that this type of strong evidence would result in the loss of all human freedom for a man to believe whatever they wanted to by faith. If God proved that He was God, no longer does any man have any freewill choices or decisions to make about the existence of God. It is an interesting paradox. The God who proves His love for us by coming personally and shedding His blood to pay the cost of our sin and He doesn’t even write down one letter in any book or leave any evidence proving His appearance. He doesn’t us leave any photographic proof of His existence. He doesn’t leave any scientific or DNA evidence other than the words of a few witnesses, some people who are told to go and tell the world that He appeared. He tells these witnesses that those that believe their words spoken to them will be saved, but those who do not, will be damned (Mark 16:15-16).
Therefore, every man on the earth is left with only one choice, to believe or to not believe in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The ball of decision is not in court of God, but was specifically designed to give man the choice in a human court of faith. A man must be sent to preach the good news to others (Romans 10:15-16). This preacher man must believe that he is called to preach and then choose to preach. Then men that he is sent to must choose to listen, hear, understand and believe the message. This method of salvation is a spiritual system called faith that was designed, created and implemented by the sovereign God alone. Knowing this should change everything about our perspective when we read the Bible. We should change to begin to look for the hidden evidence in the Bible and we should start by believing in things that we can not understand completely without overwhelming evidence.
We can learn from just the simple story of Adam and Eve in the first 3 chapters of Genesis, that God provided everything that they had need of and it was all said to be created good in the eyes of God. But, God said there was one thing that they shouldn’t do and that was to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He didn’t say they couldn’t do it, but He did warn them that the day that they did eat they would surely die. The Bible does not say that God fully explained what death was or that Adam remotely understood the consequences of disobedience. But yet, God gave man the choice to make. This is called freewill and every man has a right to it.
Apparently, Adam didn’t listen to the warning when he was faced with one of the world’s greatest decision choices that anyone could possibly make up until that time. I do not believe that Adam understood the consequences of his choice for himself or all of his descendants and he definitely chose wrong. Could God have stopped Adam from making this bad choice by providing more information, proof and evidence? I believe the answer is YES! Should God have stopped Adam by force from making this bad choice using His great knowledge? I believe the answer is NO based upon His love alone! Those are both interesting questions that only God can fully answer, but I believe the further involvement of God would have taken away the free will of the man to make his own choice to choose to obey and that is something I believe that God does not do.
So why is the Bible written in such a controversial way that appears to allow men to believe whatever they choose to believe? I believe the primary reason is the fact that God has continued to give man a freewill choice in everything that he believes. We can believe in Jesus is the LORD GOD or we can choose to believe that Jesus was just a prophet like Islamic teachings say. We can believe in the existence of eternal damnation and hell or we can choose to believe in universal salvation. We can believe in evolution or creation. We can believe in whatever we want to believe in. God wrote the Bible in this manner to allow us to find whatever we wish to search for in the Bible. But, of course that right to believe in something that is so wrong will not help us on judgment day. On judgment day, God will not be interested in our opinion or our beliefs. It won’t matter if we think we are right with all of our heart. We’ll not get to share our opinion with God on why we believed what we did on earth. We better make sure what we believe is right here, right now and is based upon the most truthful and accurate information that we can search and find in God’s word.
Thank you for reading this little Bible lesson. Infinite choices are presented in the Word of God. However, there is always only one true interpretation and understanding and this will agree with God’s opinion and not mine or yours. God Bless you and keep you and please leave a comment if can.
(Ver 1.2) Here is a topic that might raise a huge debate. Is the Bible hard to understand? Can you read the Bible cover to cover and know exactly everything that it says? There are many that I have heard who think that you can. However, I believe based upon the number of divisions, dominations, unbelievers and atheists in the world, it is clear that the Bible is very, very difficult to read and understand. So why is this such a delicate subject? I think it could be partially because there are so many people in the world that have learned something that they think is in the Bible and are holding fast to it like there is nothing else to learn. I see this all over church denominations, they learned something great a hundred years ago and they stopped learning. There is a famouse statement that applies to this discussion and it says “The greatest enemy to knowing the truth is believing that you alread do”. That statement precisely describes a great number of people in the world. God brings along someone new with a new revelation of something that He wants to teach His people, and we have idiotic denominations preaching these people are of the devil and saying they are all heretic teachers. If only they would be open and receptive enough to study and find out if it was true before they condemned it, most of them would have to change their minds and ask God to forgive them and then they would have to change what they are teaching. Pride causes many to fail this requirement quickly. No one wants to admit I was wrong please forgive me for what I use to teach.
So why is the Bible so difficult to understand? The Bible is a highly unique book written by over 50 different human authors in many different writing styles. But that is not what makes it so complex to understand for you see the entire book is really written by only one author and He is God. God used different men to write down what He wanted to say but it all goes together in harmony. So what is the difficulty? Here is a scripture that helps to explain at least part of the problem, if not the majority of the problem.
1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
There are some really strong words given to us here and this verse contains the primary reason why even many Christians don’t understand the Bible. You see this verse doesn’t say it is talking about an unsaved man, just a natural man. What is a natural man? If you look up the word it means one that is dominated by their senses. In touch with how they feel more than what they believe. The Bible speaks of a carnal mind being an enemy to the things of God (Romans 8:7). A carnal mind is a mind that is dominated by the flesh and not the spirit. So we begin to see a pattern to the problem. The unsaved world doesn’t have a clue that they are a spirit living temporarily in a human body so there is absolutely no way they would ever be able to understand the Bible. It is only after we let Jesus come into our hearts that we can begin to see and understand the Words of God.
So then what do Christians need to do to become more spiritual and less flesh dominated? That is another point of controversy but I’ll tell you what happened to me, because I can’t speak with any authority about what happened to you. I was saved, I believe as young child in Vacation Bible Schools and Christian Summer Camps. I was raised in a Christian home and my father was a pastor of several churches. However, as I grew up I drifted away from the things of God and became flesh dominated and controlled. I married and we had kids and finally through a series of events that occurred, God had my complete attention. I began to seek God for more of Him and started asking to be filled with His Spirit. Before, all of this I really never understood the Bible, didn’t like to read the Bible and didn’t care about anything that was in it. However, God answered my prayer and filled me with the Holy Spirit and all of sudden the Bible came to life and the words on the pages spoke with meaning, power and authority. A new awareness of God, a knowing God on a deeper level, an actual personal relationship with God occurred. So many people read the Bible to learn about God, when God really is more interested in them knowing Him first. So that was a quick testimony of my story and how God was able to change my heart and as a result while I don’t know everything, He has certainly been able to teach me a lot more than I use to know. God is capable of teaching you whatever you need to know, but the problem is not with God, the problem is always with us being able to change and receive from Him. It is a complex world we live in, we were created by a highly complex God who has developed complex rules and systems that He operates within. The idea of an omnipotent God that places limitations upon himself and what He can do, is probably offensive to many religious minded people. But, I didn’t create the systems, the rules, the guidelines, the laws that He imposes upon us and himself. We are required to figure out how He operates and change to fit His requirements, we should all know and understand, that God will not change to fit our requirements.
This was not a long lesson, but it requires a lot of humility and deep thought for the reader to see what is covered. I thank you for reading it and I pray you learned something from it. God Bless you and if there is anything that I can do leave me a comment and I will try to respond in a timely manner.
(Ver 1.1) I believe many times it is a good idea to review the basics and establish a firm foundation to build upon. In thinking about this topic of Bible Interpretation I thought I would review the obvious. Of course it may be obvious to me, but to a new Christian it might not be common knowledge, so here I go. There are rules to Bible Interpretation by God’s design. God has established rules and guidelines to follow and once we learn these, they often time become second nature and you don’t have to think about them in order to follow them automatically. It is much like the law of gravity, it doesn’t take us long to discover that if we climb in a tree and we slip, we fall quickly and hit the ground. I learned this as a kid in my backyard and I never forgot it. I didn’t want to disregard this law of gravity again. If you ignore God’s laws of Bible Interpretation, you might not get the wind knocked out of you physically, but spiritually it can be the same.
So what do we need to do first? Learn that there are rules to follow. Then learn what the rules are. Then follow the rules. This is not rocket science, just a simple truth about understanding the Bible and the author of the Bible. The same God that established natural and physical laws has also established spiritual laws. He lives by them and He expects you to learn them and apply them also. These are the basic principles that we all should live by everyday. We drive our cars using the traffic laws everyday. Normally once we learned how to drive and passed the test for the license we don’t go back constantly and review all of the laws that we learned every minute of the day while we drive. No, the laws and rules have become second nature and we follow them while we drive without even thinking about them.
I do not profess to know every rule of Bible Interpretation, but the ones that God has taught me, these I will transfer to you for your benefit. By reading the rest of these posts in this blog, you can learn some of the do’s and don’ts of Bible Interpretation and apply these to your study and improve your learning capacity, I guarantee it.
(Ver 1.2) This is Part 6 in the study series of Correct Bible Interpretation Rules. If you have not read from the beginning I would recommend that you go back and start reading with “Part 1” first. The last time I taught on this subject of Bible interpretation rules we talked about a very specific type of erroneous interpretation called the private interpretation. We of course now realize that a private interpretation simiply is one that is dominated by our opinions and they contain our personal subjectivity in determining the meaning of what we have read in the Bible. If you are smart you will realize that your opinion is not what is important to God or to me. Just as my opiniion should not be important to you. God is not going to ever ask our opinion on what we think the Bible means. You do realize that, don’t you? So as a result we discovered that we should let the Bible interpret itself. What we think has no determination on the final outcome of what truth is. God is so smarter than all of us combined and He wrote down very specific words that mean very specific things and we should find out what He said and what He thinks and then we should go by that as being the truth only.
So here is a related topic to no private interpretations allowed. Let God define the Words in the Bible and not you or even Daniel Webster. I look up words all the time in dictionaries to learn what they mean, but I have found that God’s definitions of these words are many, many times not in the dictionary. Let me give you a couple of quick examples. We have been studying the 1st chapter of Genesis and it refers to the 6 days of creation and then the 7th day when God rested. But if you have been following the lesson, the term “day” is defined a little bit differently in the Bible. When the Bible says “A Day is…” that indicates a direct definition is about to occur. It is about to tells us what God thinks a day is equivalent to.
2Pe 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
So if God says a day is as a 1000 years and that a 1000 years is as 1 day we can attempt to apply this definition to the scriptures we find “day” mentioned. I know this doesn’t work everywhere all the time but it does help us in many places, especially Genesis the 1st chapter. The difficulty comes when we realize that words have multiple definitions and this is the same with Bible words. We are going to have to use the word in context to see if it fits. I know this defintion fits nicely with Genesis 1 based upon what else the Bible says on the subject. You can read about a coming 1000 year day of rest in Revelation chpater 20, for example. This day of rest is described as a coming event in Hebrews chapter 4. Therefore the clarification of a day being as 1000 years directly applies to Genesis 1 with ease.
Let me give you another example of when God’s definition is better than a man’s definition. In the 9th chapter of John, Jesus comes upon a blind man and his disciples start asking him questions of why. I’m not going to get into the details of this story just one comment that Jesus makes in answering the question. Jesus says “I must work the works of him that sent me…” in John 9:4. In reading this verse I automatically assumed like many others that healing the man was the work that Jesus was talking about because we can see that this is what Jesus did at least at first. If we look up the word “work” in the dictionary it would refer us to a manual labor task or a place of employment or occupation among other related meanings. Of course none of these definitions would help us to understand what Jesus did and why. What is work to God? What is God’s definition of work? Did you realize Jesus tells us the definition, if we only look for it. If we back up in the book of John to the 6th chapter and the 29th verse we can see God’s definition for what work is:
John 6:29 “This is the work of God, that we believe on him whom he has sent.”
That definition changes everything so dramatically about what we read in John 9 that it is almost ridiculous and it shows us why we should be looking for God’s definitions in the Bible and leaving our opinions and our definitions out of the mix. You can now go back to chapter 9 of John and reread the entire story based upon this new definition and you will see that God did accomplish this work. Jesus met up with the former blind man and asked do you believe in the Son of God (John 9:35)? The man asks who is that to Jesus and Jesus says it is who you are speaking to now. The man then says “Lord I believe”. This was the defined work of God demonstrated. Getting people to believe in Jesus in still our primary work today.
Let me give you one more example on getting God’s definitions to help you see that this is a very important subject to learn. We are all told in the Bible to expect eternal life as our reward. However, every spiritual being in the world saved or unsaved will live forever somewhere. Those that are saved will live with Christ and those that are not will be in hell. So what is the Bible defintion for eternal life? Let’s read God’s definition of eternal life for the believer:
Joh 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
There is a direct explicit definition for eternal life in this verse and there is also an indirect definition for eternal death in this verse. Since every truth has an opposite truth associated with it, we can learn both definitions from a single verse. Eternal Life is us knowing the True God forever. We can conclude that Eternal Death is the opposite of not knowing the True God forever but knowing the false God Satan forever. These are very important definition of eternal ife and death. Because they came from God’s word and not the dictionary they contain truth that is unrefutable by human reasoning.
I just gave you three quick examples of letting God define the words we read in the Bible but there are so many others to be found in the Bible. It will help you so much in understanding what God wrote if you let God show you what those things mean. The Bible is one Book by one Author and He is smarter than I am. God Bless!
(Ver 1.2) This is now Part 5 in the series of lessons on Correct Bible Interpretation. If you have not read through this series from the beginning I would strongly suggest that you return back to “Part 1” first. I’ve been going through various rules and the keys to successful and correct Bible Interpretation and now want to touch on probably one of the most important rules that I have been shown by God. The ignorance and the misuse of this one rule gets more Christians into the hot water of error than probably the others all combined. It seems like humans are naturally opinionated and like to express their opinions usually very loudly. Whenever a person doesn’t understand what is being said, many times they close their eyes to it and attempt to come up with their own explanation of the meaning of the verse. This is called a private interpretation. The Bible actually warns us not to go there, but still this is a common human trait we all must face and conquer. Here is a definition of interpretation that I found on the web:
Interpretation: Opinion regarding a set of facts. A degree of subjectivity is involved on the part of the individual, based on his or her experience, personality, and biases.
Did you notice what that definition said? It said people often times use their own experiences, their personalities or their biases to determine what they think about a stated fact. I see ministers doing this all the time in what they teach. They are letting something external to the Word of God dictate what they believe it says. That is a very dangerous approach to take when studying the Bible. Here is a verse of scripture that I referred to earlier:
2 Peter 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
That is a critical word from God with far reaching consequences. It says we shouldn’t use our own private interpretations to explain God’s Word. The clear implication that is made is that the Bible interprets itself. Some would read 2nd Peter 1:20 and say that is a restrictive context that only applies to prophetic books like Isaiah or Revelation and other books that were written by God’s prophets. But I’ve got news for you that almost every book that I’ve studied has some very clear prophetic words recorded in them. It’s easier to find a scripture of prophecy than to find a scripture that is not prophetic.
So the bottom line, is if you don’t understand what is being said shut up and don’t try to teach it like you do. Unless you can find scriptures that back what you think is true and accurate leave it alone and don’t speculate. I’ve recently heard some ministers teach Revelation and they said some things that were clearly just their own opinions. The problem is when they stand up and teach it with authority like it is a word from God they influence others to believe a lie. This makes it much harder when God does reveal the truth for people to accept.
Here is another example of a private interpretation. Many in the body of Christ teach that healing went out with the death of the last Apostle. God doesn’t heal anymore, we have doctors that have replaced God. It doesn’t matter that they don’t have any scripture to back what they are teaching, the damage is done, people’s faith is destroyed and many Christians die as a result. There are more private interpretations of the Bible on the internet than there is the truth of God. That makes it extremely difficult to place the truth at the top of the list. I have heard men leave me comments and tell me why I am wrong over and over and almost everytime, it has to do with their private interpretation of the scriptures. Whenever you have to look for a reality outside of the Word of God by studying commentatires or history books, you have departed from the truth to teach a lie. Please learn to give God more credit than that. There is much more information in the Bible than what you currently know and understand. God help us all from people teaching their own opinions.
(Ver 2.2) This is Part 4 in the series of Bible lessons on Correct Bible Interpretation Rules. If you have not read this series from the beginning it would be advised that you go back and start reading at “Part 1” first and continue forward through the series. Getting a firm grasp on God’s usage of symbolism is very critical to correctly understanding and interpreting the Bible. Many times we read the Bible and see the mention of something that can be taken either literally or symbolically and this makes correct Bible interpretation infinitely more complex. The Bible is full of symbolism from the very 1st chapter of Genesis to the very last chapter in Revelation. We will eventually discuss why God uses symbolism but for now let’s attempt to define what it is. I like to view symbolism as a method used by God to convey hidden spiritual information in a coded format or reference. Symbolic Bible reference almost always describe concealed and hidden spiritual things using the terms, descriptions, names or titles of natural things, events or people that we all should be familiar with or at the least should be able to look at them and then learn to understand them with study. For example, have you ever seen God? No, God is a hidden spiritual being and the Bible says no man has ever seen God, but yet for you to get to know who God is, He describes Himself in the terms of natural things like the Sun so that we can understand Him and learn about His hidden qualities.
If while you are reading the Bible you encounter a reference to something or someone that doesn’t make a lot of sense to be a real physical entity it would be a good time to ask is this a symbolic reference to a higher spiritual truth. Let me give you an example in Genesis 3, the Bible speaks of a creature called the serpent in Genesis 3:1. Most Bible scholars agree that this is Satan, but the controversy comes when they attempt to say that Satan appeared in the garden of Eden as a physical snake. If you ever attended Sunday School as a child you have seen the picture of a naked man and woman in the garden with an apple in their hand and a talking snake near them tempting them. I guess this is the picture that these verses in Genesis 3 have conjoured up within the minds of men and women who have read the story. I could give you several scriptures in the Bible that directly contradict this account that helps us to see the real meaning behind this symbol, but I guess because of the time it would take to do that, I won’t go into that level of detail until we get to those verses in Genesis 3 later. What I will say is that this serpent in Genesis 3 is a symbolic reference and not an actual literal physical talking snake and you will have to wait for why I know this until later.
Please realize that the first three chapters of Genesis are heavily covered with symbolic references and not literal references. God is attempting to teach you about spiritual things and not about natural things and this is the failure that many Bible students fall into by simply ignoring which references are natural and which ones are just symbolic of a much greater spiritual reality. The book of Daniel has many symbolic references throughout the book. The beasts seen in the visions, are all symbolic of earthly empires and spiritual beings behind them. The book of Revelation is literally the most symbolic book that I know of. There are very literally few things in the book of Revelation that are mentioned that are not symbolic of something that is spiritual. You can find Daniel’s beasts repeated in Revelation, you can find the serpent from Genesis 3 repeated and finally being revealed to who this was in Revelation 12. There are two major symbolic women in Revelation, one in Revelation 12 and the other in Revelation 17 called the Whore of Babylon. There is another symbolic city called a woman in Revelation 21 named the New Jerusalem and the bride of the Lamb.
I hope that you understand symbolism and can learn to identify God’s usage of this technique. God Bless!
(Ver 1.2) This is Part 3 in the series of Bible lessons on Correct Bible Interpretation Rules. If you have not read from the beginning of the series I would recommend that you go back and start with “Part 1” first. This is one of those obvious Bible facts, but sometimes it is really good to state the obvious for public general knowledge and for clarification to help avoid misunderstanding. The Bible does not contain a complete story, account or description of anything, anyone, any place, or any event within human history. The Bible omits more details than it includes on any subject given to us by God. I believe God puts only the most relevant and pertinent facts in the Bible that He wanted us to see and know and that He omitted whatever He felt was not important or too dangerous for us to know at that time. For example it is very clear that Genesis is not a complete account of creation. The Old Testament is not a complete account of the natural nation of Israel. The Gospels are not a complete account of the life and ministry of Jesus. The book of Acts is not a complete account of the early church. The book of Revelation is not a complete account of the end. On and on I could go. What we must begin to realize is that the facts and information given to us in the Bible are all extremely important and then we must learn to focus on what they say or don’t say in order to understand what God wanted us to know. Did you notice what I just said? There is more than one way to learn from what God wrote in the Bible. One direct way is to learn what was written to us. The other indirect way is to observe what was not written to us. Wow that could get really complex, couldn’t it?
In the book of John the 20th chapter and the 30th verse it says there were many other things that Jesus did that were not written for us to see. Why were some things recorded and other things not recorded. Correct Bible study and interpretation is certainly more complex and involved than anything that you can imagine.
Joh 21:25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
Notice what God declares to us in this last verse of the book of John. God very clearly states that the world could not contain the volumes of information that were performed and spoken by the Lord Jesus Christ. That just amazes me tremendously. God was obviously highly selective to which words that He wanted us to see and understand. It certainly does not belittle the words that were not included but God placed great value upon these words that were written to us. Seeing the value of these words has been the theme of the last two lessons on Correct Bible Interpretation. If you do not value God’s Words then you will never correctly understand them.
Understanding that God has written the Bible using a technique of limited and confined information is one of the keys to unlocking the meaning. Look at the Bible as a single piece of the pie from the much larger complete knowledge of God’s wisdom. Gaining a correct perspective of the Bible will great assist in the correct interpretation of the Bible. This technique of limited information displays the extreme intelligence of God and His ability to say a great deal in a few words. Often it is not the amount of the words but rather the purpose and content of what was spoken that makes them most valuable to us. I hope you are grasping the significance but we have only initiated the subject of Correct Bible Interpretation. We will continue on in the next lesson and learn more important concepts.
If you would like to continue reading about Correct Bible Interpretation please go to “Part 4” now.
(Ver 2.1) This lesson is Part 2 of the Correct Bible Interpretation Rules series. If you have not read from the beginning I would recommend that you start with “Part 1“. In this series I discuss the proper approaches and rules to interpreting and understanding what God has given to us to know. When reading and studying the Bible, I have learned that it is absolutely critical to pay close attention to every word that is written. If it wasn’t important, God would not have written it down for us to read and study. Think with me and consider the fact that God could have written us any words and these are the ones that the most intelligent being in the universe wrote down for you to personally read. That tells me that God thinks they are important. Did you ever notice that God pays attention to the smallest details in your life? The Bible says He knows how many hairs are on your head (Mat 10:30). Since this number changes on many people’s head daily this is an amazing attention to some details that we do not even know. That is an amazing revelation to the level of detail that God is interested in you. If He cares that much for you, I believe that He expects you and I to care that much for Him and His words.
2Ti 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
This scripture in 2 Timothy 3:16 informs us, that every word of God is important for us to see and learn. If you continue reading in the next verse you will that it claims that these words will help a man to grow up spiritually and become mature to do great works. Sometimes I think we either do not understand what this means or we forget that this is true. Especially when we read through boring genealogies or lists, laws or something that we are not interested in. Does “ALL” mean every word? I believe it does and we need to read it like God is saying something very important to teach us or correct our life’s course.
Luk 4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
You can clearly read from the mouth of God some words that are extensively ignored by some Christians. According to God Himself, He says that man will only live by knowing every Word of God. God is comparing His Word to that of symbolic natural bread. It just so happens that I really like bread so I can relate to this analogy and type of symbolism with ease. You see I also like the Word of God and that is what makes me different than a lot of people. What I want you to see is the emphasized qualifier in this verse that it states that “EVERY” word of the Bible is important to feed on spiritually. The next time that you read a genealogy like in Genesis 5 you should change your attitude towards it and find out why God put it there and then try to learn what it means. When I discovered that the Genesis 5 genealogy had a hidden message within it, I changed how I looked at the Word of God. Suddenly every word seemed to have more significance and meaning attached to it than I ever realized before. I began to look at every word differently and just because I did not understand why it was there, it did not deter me from taking away what I could find out about it and then making notes about what I still needed to learn. Writing down your questions and praying to ask God to answer them will open the door for Him to show you what they mean.
Maybe I’m different than you are. I learned as a computer programmer to pay close attention to every jot and tittle that existed within the programming text. Every bit and byte of information had great significance to whether the program that I wrote worked or failed. Believe it or not, this is what God is trying to teach you today about the Bible. Become a detail oriented person in your Bible study and it will change your point of view and I will guarantee that you learn more than you ever have before. Learn to feed your spirit on every word of God and treat them all as being valuable for your life. There is a famous quote that states “Success is in the details” and I believe this more today than I ever have. I hope you do this also! Ignoring little details will most often lead us into errors of wrong interpretation. Taking a portion of a verse out of context is often a main way people fall into error.
I thank you for reading this short lesson on Correct Bible Interpretation. It had only one main point and I pray that you understood the significance. If you would like to continue reading in this series please continue to the next lesson called “Part 3“.
(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.