Friday, November 30, 2007

Hermeneutics - A Primer On Bible Study Methods

A Primer On the Historical-Grammatical Book Interpretation Method

How to go adept in Book Interpretation

(EVEN IF YOU DON'T know Hebrew Oregon GREEK)

This is an article about the history of Book Interpretation. It will be primarily for the norm individual who may or may not have got the duty of instruction a social class or instructing others in the Scriptures but who have a desire to be adept in Book Interpretation for himself/herself. It is written on the premiss that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, commonly known as the Bible, are the very words of God. I believe that in the original manuscripts, the words of Supreme Being were recorded exactly as Supreme Being would have got them written, and the human writers were kept from all error.

To the immature preacher man Timothy the Apostle Alice Paul said these words:

"But go on thousand in the things which thousand hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thousand hast learned them; 15 And that from a kid thousand hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to do thee wise unto redemption through religion which is in Jesus Of Nazareth Jesus. 16 All Bible is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for direction in righteousness: 17 That the adult male of Supreme Being may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works." KJV 2 Timothy 3:14

In the phrase "All Bible is given by inspiration of God..." the word "inspiration" literally intends "God breathed." Supreme Being actually exhaled all Scripture. That is the biblical claim and I accept that at human face value. I state that so there will be no mis-understanding arsenic we larn how to construe the Bible.

Bible Interpretation have been a enigma for most laymen for a many years. This is so even though there are many good books available on the subject. I believe there are respective grounds for this situation. Through the old age a professional Christian church outlook have tended to go forth the apprehension of the Book up to those who are seen as professional teachers. The seminaries and Book schools provide to those whose life career is instruction and sermon the Book (and so they should). There also looks to be the outlook among some "professionals" that they are the lone 1s who should be trained in Bible interpretation. I implore to differ. It is obvious to me that a biblically sharp temporalty is needed if there are to be godly places and Negro spiritual churches. Godly work force and women turn spiritually as they larn to feed on the Scriptures. It is my supplication that many who have got been mystified by much of what the Book states will read the words in this small article, and be invigorated to analyze the Book anew, and will be equipped to make it with a great grade of satisfaction.

An of import portion of Book reading is apprehension a small about the history of the discipline.

The first professional Masters of Book Interpretation were Judaic scribes. They arose in the years of Ezra and were determined to give the truth of the Scriptures they had. They gave the sense of the written Scriptures so that the common people could understand their meaning.1 A written document called The Midrash housed the readings of the rabbis, the instructors to Israel. The Scribes set the first Misrash together in the 4th century B.C.2 The term 'midrash' come ups from a Hebrew root which intends 'to explain, deduce, ferret out.'3

Some of the early Scribes and rabbis thought that the Scriptures had a deeper significance that was not obvious on the surface. It was a deeper and mystical meaning. One author quotation marks Rabbi Akiba, who was a leader of a school for rabbis at Jaffa, Palestine as saying , ". every repetition, figure, parallelism, synonyme [sic], word, letter, particle, pleonasm, na, the very form of a letter, had a recondite meaning, just as every fibre of fly's wing or an ant's ft have its peculiar significance."4

This doctrine carried over into the early Christian church. According to Roy Zuck, Origen, an early Christian Christian church father, believed that "Noah's ark of the covenant pictured the church and Noah represented Christ. Rebekah's drawing H2O at the well for Abraham's retainer intends we must daily come up to the Scriptures to ran into Christ. In Jesus Of Nazareth triumphal entry the donkey represented the Old Testament, its colt depicted the New Testament and the two apostles pictured the moral and mystical senses of the Scriptures."5 This sort of reading nearly ignored the actual significance the writers of Bible had in mind. Because of this neglect for the actual significance of the Scriptures in Alexandrian Church Fathers, respective leadership in Antakya of Syrian Arab Republic set their accent on the historical, actual interpretation. "They stressed the survey of the Bible's original linguistic communications (Hebrew and Greek) and they wrote comments on the Scriptures." " For them, actual reading included nonliteral language."6

The tendency to allegorize and give notional significances to the Bible continued in the Western Christian church however. Interpreters left the historical, actual and contextual significances of the Scriptures and developed all sorts of indefensible interpretations. McQuay says: "Collections of allegorical readings showed, for illustration that the word sea could intend a assemblage of water, Scripture, the present age, the human heart, the active life, heathenish or baptism.7 For a thousand old age the allegorical method of reading of the Book held sway. I make not believe it is a happenstance that this is the clip period of time dubbed the dark ages by the historians.

The Protestant Reformation beginning in the 16th century saw the move back to the actual reading of Scripture. The Reformation established two chief rules that led in this return. The first 1 was called "the analogy of Scripture" and simply said that all Bible must be interpreted by other Scripture. It denied the right of the Catholic Church, the pontiff or any other human establishment to lock in any peculiar Bible interpretation. The 2nd rule was the rule of actual sense. The Book was to be interpreted literally where possible. This eliminated the whole system of allegorical reading that had held sway during the dark ages. Work Force began to exegete the Scriptures on a new airplane and the original linguistic communications were used to happen the first author's actual meaning.8 This method of reading came to be known as the Grammatical-Historical method of interpretation.

A grouping of critics that were very destructive appeared in the 19th century. These work force were controlled by realistic pre-suppositions that denied anything that could not be empirically proven. The super-natural was simply dis-believed. This have led to much confusion concerning true biblical interpretation. My reply is that we necessitate to travel back to the simple rules of the analogy of religion and a actual interpretation. If Supreme Being is super-natural then we should not restrict Him to acting in lone natural, humanly interpretable ways.

Neo-orthodoxy arose in the latter 19th century to battle the liberalism spawned by the higher critics mentioned above. It was a manner of trying to construe the Scriptures as God's word while holding on to the realistic pre-suppositions of the broad higher critics. It failed miserably.

In the early 20th century a motion arose that was known as "Fundamentalism." It was characterized by work force who believed the Bible, super-natural events and all, and who said that the Scriptures should be interpreted literally and in their historical context. Conservatism, the step-child of fundamentalism holds, for the most part, to the place of a actual reading of the Scriptures but makes not encompass the legalistic inclinations of many of the early fundamentalistic leaders. The Pentecostalist and Charismatic motions look to throw to a actual and historical reading of Bible but with the danger of going beyond Bible and confusing the instruction of certain work force with the instruction of Scripture. We will cover with this phenomenon more at length later.

That is a very abbreviated overview of the history of Book interpretation. If the pupil is interested whole books have got been written on each facet of that history and it would be well deserving the work to look into each time period in depth. In our adjacent article we will travel on to an account of the Grammatical- Historical attack to Book interpretation.

1 1Norman Geisler and William Nix. A General Introduction to the Book (Chicago: Helen Wills Moody Press, 1975), 52.

2 2James I. Packer. Merrill C. Tenny, and William White, Jr. Eds., The Book Almanac (Nashville: Seth Thomas Horatio Nelson Publishers, 1980), 502

3 3Concept Midrash Internet Beginning (USA Jewish Theological Seminary of United States 1997), 1.

4Roy B. Zuck. Basic Book Interpretation (Wheaton: Victor Books, 1991), 28.

5Zuck, 36.

6Zuck. 37.

7Earl P. McQuay. Keys To Understanding the Bible, (Nashville: Broadman, 1993)18.

8J. Barton Payne. The Theology of the Older Testament, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publication House, 1962), 26.

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