Biblical Interpretation

Revealed Truths

The Bible is truth.

The Bible interprets itself.

We must test every doctrine against the Bible.

We must consider the complete topic.

We must consider the complete context.

Some key verses:

Jn 17:17, 2Pe 1:20, Rev 17:15, Ac 17:10,11, 2Ti 3:16

Exposed Falsehoods

It is false to think that the Bible contains a contradiction.

It is false to think that the Bible contains any falsehood.

It is false to think that family tradition is above the Bible.

It is false to think that church tradition is above the Bible.

Some key verses:

Ps 89:34, Heb 6:17,18, Mt 10:37, Mt 15:3,8,9

Know the Truth

Know the truth. (Isa 5:20,21, Jer 7:8-10, Jn 3:19-21, Jn 8:43-47, 2Ti 2:15, Rev 22:14,15)

God's Word is Truth

God's word is truth. (Jn 17:17)

Because God does not contradict Himself and the Bible is God's word, the Bible does not contain contradictions. (Ps 89:34, Mal 3:6, Heb 13:8)

Because God does not lie and the Bible is God's word, the Bible contains no falsehood. (Nu 23:19, Heb 6:17,18)

Jesus is the Living Truth

Jesus is the living Truth. (Jn 14:6)

Jesus is the focus of the entire Bible (Jn 5:39)

Jesus is the Living Word

Jesus is the living Word. (Jn 1:1-4,14-17)

Do Not Look to Human Teachings

Do not look to human teachings. (Ps 118:8, Ac 5:29, 1Co 3:19, Col 2:8, 2Th 2:8-12, 2Pe 3:15-17)

Note on 2Pe 3:15-17: Wrest - "To twist or extort by violence; to pull or force from by violent wringing or twisting" (Webster's Dictionary 1828)

Do not look to your own understanding. (Pr 3:5, Pr 14:12)

Do not look to family teaching. (Mt 10:34-37)

Do not look to the majority view. (Mt 7:13,14, 2Ti 4:3,4)

Do not look to church tradition. (Mt 15:3,8,9)

The Bible and the Bible Only

The Bible and the Bible only (Ps 119:105, Mt 22:29, Ac 17:10,11, Ac 18:28, 1Ti 4:13, 2Ti 3:16, Rev 22:18,19)

Sola scriptura (Latin "by scripture alone") - one of five primary themes of the Protestant Reformation.

Sola gratia ("by grace alone")

Sola fide ("by faith alone")

Solus Christus ("by Christ alone")

Soli Deo gloria ("glory to God alone")

The Need for Spiritual Discernment

The need for spiritual discernment (1Co 2:14)

Example: Spiritual temple (Jn 2:18-21)

Example: Spiritual birth (Jn 3:3-6)

Example: Spiritual water (Jn 4:10,11)

Example: Spiritual meat (Jn 4:31-34)

Example: Spiritual flesh (Jn 6:52-60,63)

The Bible Interprets Itself

The Bible interprets itself. (2Pe 1:20)

Example: Beast = kingdom (Da 7:2-4,17,23)

Example: Water = people (Rev 17:15)

Consider the Complete Topic

Example: What is the fear of the Lord? (Pr 1:7, Pr 9:10, Pr 8:13, Ex 18:21, Rev 14:6,7)

Example: Was Peter the disciple who cut off the ear of a servant of the high priest? (Mt 26:51, Mk 14:47, Lk 22:50, Jn 18:25,26)

Example: Was Jesus created by the Father? (Jn 3:16)

Begotten - "Procreated; generated" (Webster's Dictionary 1828)

Jesus created all things (except the triune God). (Col 1:16,17)

Jesus and the Father are One. (Isa 9:6, Jn 8:58,59 compare Ex 3:14, Jn 10:30, Jn 14:9, Heb 1:8)

Jesus is eternal. (Jn 1:1-3,14, Rev 1:7,8)

"Begotten" indicates the close relationship as Father and Son. (Heb 1:5)

"Begotten" indicates the incarnation of Christ. ("son of man" Mt 20:28, Heb 1:6, Heb 2:16)

"Begotten" indicates the resurrection of Christ. (Ps 2:7 compare Ac 13:32,33, Rev 1:5)

Example: Are Christians no longer God's servants? (Jn 15:15) (Ro 6:22, 1Pe 2:5,16, Rev 1:1, Rev 7:2-4, Rev 22:3,4)

Rather than negating servanthood, Jesus was expanding His disciples understanding of their relationship with Him.

Example: Will the city of Babylon be rebuilt? (Rev 17:5,6,18, Isa 13:19,20)

Consider the Complete Context

Example: What day did Job curse? (Job 3:1)

The context shows he cursed the day he was born. (Job 3:3)

Example: Did Jesus say that it does not matter what we eat? (Mt 15:11)

The context is eating without first washing the hands (see Mt 15:2 and Mt 15:20).

Jesus refuted the Pharisees' claim that ceremonial washings affect our purity.

Example: Did Jesus say He does not judge? (Jn 8:15)

The context shows he meant according as men judge by outward appearances ("after the flesh"). (Jn 5:22, Jn 8:16, 2Co 5:10)

Consider each "Difficult" Verse

Find harmony in "difficult" verses by studying context and semantics.

Example: After the flood, did God allow all living things to be eaten? (Ge 9:3)

The distinction between clean and unclean animals was already known. (Ge 8:20)

There was a mutual understanding that unclean animals were not candidates for food.

Consider, as an analogy, that people live and move, but cannibalism is obviously not being sanctioned.

Consider that there were seven pairs of each clean type, but only one pair of each unclean type. (Ge 7:2)

Eating an unclean animal soon after the flood would have resulted in extinction of that species.

Later, when giving health laws through Moses, God clearly forbids eating unclean animals. (Lev 11:46,47)

Did God cause His people to be lost? (Ro 11:7,8) (No)

God did not cast away His people. (see Ro 11:1)

God did not prevent the spritual deafness chosen by the people. (Jer 7:24-27)

Because we have free will, He permits our course of action. (Mt 23:37)

The Truth is Accepted by God's Children

The Truth is accepted by God's children (Jn 8:47, Jn 10:26,27, 1Jn 4:6)