Crossing the Bridge (Part 5 of 5) (by Ben Johnson)

Now we bring to a close this (brief) look at Bible study. For this week, we look at the principlizing bridge. The Bible is a book for all people at all times but it was written at a different time. This bridge will help us cross the gap of what is written in the Bible at a different time and apply it to our lives today.

I want to briefly look at the varying aspects that must be considered when studying Scripture.

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Time: When studying Scripture, one must consider when a passage is being written. For example, Knowing that the book of Jonah was written at a time when Israel were enemies of the Assyrians helps us see one reason why Jonah did not want to go to their capital.

Culture: Understanding the culture of the people in the Bible  helps us understand the situations that happen in Scripture. When Jesus washes the disciples feet, we can understand how much Jesus was humbling Himself since culturally, this task was reserved for the lowest of servants.

Language: I am not someone who believes that one must have an excellent understanding in Hebrew and Greek to study the Bible but knowing a little knowledge can help. In Galatians 1:6-7, Paul says that they preach another Gospel which is not another. Those two anothers are two different Greek words that help explain what is meant.

Situation: You have to understand the events going on when a passage of Scripture is being written to understand it properly. This could be added to knowing the context and authorial intent. For example, many people like to quote Jeremiah 29:11 and claim it as their own. However, look at the situation in which it is being written: The Israelites were in captivity and God is promising them that they would get out of it. God’s plans for captive Israel were for good not the plans for us in this life.

Covenant: I truly believe that if people could get this one, it would help out tremendously with much of the bad and false teaching that exists. There are two main covenants in the Bible the old and the new. The New Covenant (or Testament), is different from the old. The old covenant is a quid pro quo covenant. God said to the children of Israel do this and you will be blessed. He also said if they did not do that then they would be cursed. That blessing and cursing don’t apply to us today because we are in the New covenant, a covenant of grace. We are blessed not because of what we do or don’t do but because we are in Christ.


One Comment

  1. Paul Pschirer says:

    These are great principles, all bible students should have Preaching God’s Word and Grasping God’s Word in their libraries!

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