Bible Interpretation I - Lesson 3

              Introduction Continued

  1. INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR BIBLE INTERPRETATION
    1. God’s Command – Each individual believer is commanded to investigate and interpret the scriptures for himself with the aid of the Holy Ghost (John 5:39; 2 Timothy 2:15)
    2. Trying the Spirits – Even when taught by another, the believer is responsible for what is accepted as truth.  He is to be as the Bereans who “searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).  We are to try the spirits (1 John 4:1) and prove all things (1 Thessalonians 5:21).
    3. The Hebrews were reproved because they were “unskilful in the word of righteousness” and did not “by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:12-14).  They were blamed for not being able to use the word with skill.  We have the same responsibility.
  2. SPIRITUAL REQUIREMENTS OF BIBLE INTERPRETATION
    1. Personal Faith in Christ – Salvation (1 Corinthians 2:14)
    2. Faith in the Word of God (1 Thessalonians 2:13; cp.Hebrews 11:6)
    3. Earnest Desire to Hear God (Proverbs 18:1)
    4. Prayer For Guidance (Psalm 119:18)
    5. Teaching of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:9-14; Psalm 36:9) – Spiritual illumination is absolutely necessary to understand the Bible (see Isaiah 29:11-12)
    6. Fear of the Lord (Psalm 25:12,14; Proverbs 1:7; Proverbs 9:10; Proverbs 15:33); this includes a readiness to respond to the truth of God
    7. Obedience to Revealed Truth (John 7:17; John 8:31-32)
  3. THE LAWS OF BIBLE INTERPRETATION
    1. The Law of the Words
      1. Every word of God is pure (Proverbs 30:5-6)
      2. A word’s usage determines its meaning; therefore, the meaning of a Bible word is determined by how that word is used in the Bible
      3. Tools: English and Bible dictionaries
      4. The Bible must be the final authority in all questions of definition and meaning (see 1 Samuel 9:9; Matthew 1:23)
      5. All words have a specific purpose chosen by their author.  All scriptural words are verbally (each word) and plenarily (exactly chosen) inspired
        1. thee, thou, ye, you
        2. will, shall
David Reagan

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 20:14

It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth.