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God & Me - Written Word

The Written Word 4

The mission of proper interpretation becomes vital when it comes to interpreting the written word of God.

We tend to put aside rules of interpretation, thinking that the Holy Spirit will guide us into truth.

Certainly God gives us the Holy Spirit to guide us.

But we must be responsible with the abilities and resources He has also given us.

Application of our clue questions to the most important work of literature, the Bible, literature that most of us declare to live and die by, is imperative.

Another important clue, especially important in determining meaning of the Scriptures, is that of THROUGH THE MESSENGER.

Suppose you are a member of a group, and the group’s director sends a letter to a fellow member. Let’s call him, Sam.

The letter is about the group and a particular problem that Sam is experiencing.

It would be presumptuous for another group member to think that the letter was directly communicating to him without taking Sam’s situation into account.

Although there might be relevant, applicable information for the group, it would be necessary to understand the message as having come through Sam before interpreting it to the group.

The more Sam is ignored as the messenger, the less likely it is that the group will understand the director’s intentions.

In our eagerness to apply God’s Word, we sometimes find ourselves doing interpretive somersaults.

Some things which seem problematic are clarified when we remember that the Bible is God’s Word to us. But it’s God’s written Word though His people, Israel, to us.

By dismissing the messenger, we distort the message.

To apply the Word accurately, we need to understand the THROUGH part.

Let’s look at one of the somersaults we are forced to turn when we disregard this clue.

The passage we’ll study is in 2 Chronicles, chapter 7, verse 14.

It reads, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

As you study this verse, know that any interpretive conclusion you come to must also be applicable to the verses later on in the chapter.

Now let’s take our skills one step further and explore Sound Applications.

Sound applications can only come after proper interpretation of the written Word.

We need to ask:

What do these verses say?

What do these verses mean?

Then and only then should we ask,

Are there truths which are applicable today?

In these verses, no, if the promises are conditional.

What makes them conditional?

Do these conditions still exist today?

Exploring the messenger and Sound Applications will help us understand how God communicates with us THROUGH His Written Word.
 

The Written Word 4

Posted by: Jane Hsu
Released Date: Mar-08-2010

Another important clue, especially important in determining meaning of the Scriptures, is that of THROUGH THE MESSENGER.

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The Written Word 4

The mission of proper interpretation becomes vital when it comes to interpreting the written word of God.

We tend to put aside rules of interpretation, thinking that the Holy Spirit will guide us into truth.

Certainly God gives us the Holy Spirit to guide us.

But we must be responsible with the abilities and resources He has also given us.

Application of our clue questions to the most important work of literature, the Bible, literature that most of us declare to live and die by, is imperative.

Another important clue, especially important in determining meaning of the Scriptures, is that of THROUGH THE MESSENGER.

Suppose you are a member of a group, and the group’s director sends a letter to a fellow member. Let’s call him, Sam.

The letter is about the group and a particular problem that Sam is experiencing.

It would be presumptuous for another group member to think that the letter was directly communicating to him without taking Sam’s situation into account.

Although there might be relevant, applicable information for the group, it would be necessary to understand the message as having come through Sam before interpreting it to the group.

The more Sam is ignored as the messenger, the less likely it is that the group will understand the director’s intentions.

In our eagerness to apply God’s Word, we sometimes find ourselves doing interpretive somersaults.

Some things which seem problematic are clarified when we remember that the Bible is God’s Word to us. But it’s God’s written Word though His people, Israel, to us.

By dismissing the messenger, we distort the message.

To apply the Word accurately, we need to understand the THROUGH part.

Let’s look at one of the somersaults we are forced to turn when we disregard this clue.

The passage we’ll study is in 2 Chronicles, chapter 7, verse 14.

It reads, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

As you study this verse, know that any interpretive conclusion you come to must also be applicable to the verses later on in the chapter.

Now let’s take our skills one step further and explore Sound Applications.

Sound applications can only come after proper interpretation of the written Word.

We need to ask:

What do these verses say?

What do these verses mean?

Then and only then should we ask,

Are there truths which are applicable today?

In these verses, no, if the promises are conditional.

What makes them conditional?

Do these conditions still exist today?

Exploring the messenger and Sound Applications will help us understand how God communicates with us THROUGH His Written Word.
 

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