“Can anybody really understand the Bible?”
1. Consider the setting of 2 Timothy 2:15.
a. Quarreling about words, irreverent babble to be avoided (v. 14, 16)
b. Talk that the resurrection already happened spreading like gangrene (v. 17-18)
c. Faith of some in the church being upset (v. 18)
d. Solution was accurate handling of the word of truth (v. 15)
2. The problem now: the assumption that the meaning depends on a special set of rules of interpretation brought by the reader.
3. The way to understand the Bible is to apply the common principles of communication to it.
a. God has chosen to reveal his will in ordinary human language.
b. The basic principles to understand language are innate in the human mind.
c. Only the means by which we understand communication in everyday life are applicable for the interpretation of God’s word.
1. Know what is being talked about.
a. The Bible: more like a library with a unifying theme.
b. The subject of the narrative is Christ.
i. Luke 24:25-27
i. John 5:39
iii. Acts 13:32-33
c. If the point is missed the message is misunderstood.
2. Apply the basic principles for communicating.
b. Understand the meaning of the words.
c. Understand the grammar and syntax – how the words relate to each other.
d. Understand the historical background for the passage being read.
e. Understand the context of the statement.
f. Understand any significant historical foreground.
g. Understand the part in harmony with the whole.
h. Understand the meaning of the passage.
1. Nothing in this process is new to us or unique to the Bible.
2. We can understand the Bible if we:
a. Believe it can be understood.
b. Want to do what God wants.
c. Apply the ordinary principles of communication.
3. “...just use me!”