Monday, August 23, 2010

A Biblical Foundation Part 2: Scripture is Clear

2 Peter 3:15-18

Scripture is Clear – perspicuity of scripture – clear & understandable.

What it does NOT mean

1. All scripture is equally clear and easily understood as to its precise meaning
2. Interpretation, explanation, and exposition by a Bible teacher are never necessary
3. Believers will agree universally on every point

What it DOES mean

1. Scripture is clear enough for the simplest person to live by, yet deep enough for the most intellectual and diligent readers
2. Obscurity is the fault of our finite and sinful minds, not a problem with the Bible
3. Interpreters must use ordinary means

We cannot ask the Holy Spirit to replace our intellectual engagement with the text. We need to learn it and believe it (cf. Philippians 3:15-16 / John 7:17). Whenever we depart from the plain and simple meaning of Scripture, interpreted using normal means, we are headed for trouble.

When looking at texts, we can understand them to apply to Christians universally, such as Matthew 28:19-20 (go therefore and teach all nations), or to someone or something specifically, such as Matthew 10:5-6 (do not go to anyone but the Jews, a command for the disciples only and for that particular time period only, overruled by the Great Commission), or principally, such as Philippians 2:3-4 (Paul was speaking to a particular church but the principle of Christlike behavior applies to us) or not at all, as with 2 Timothy 4:13 (Paul tells Timothy to bring his papers, which we are obviously not to do). Texts meant specifically may also apply principally, so sometimes texts that aren’t teaching on a particular subject may still give us a principle to follow and apply to other matters.

“Living For Today With An Eye For Tomorrow”©

2 comments:

Even So... said...

This is part of a basic training and membership class at our church. You can see all nine weeks in .pdf form on the front page at vocieofvision.org.

MrsEvenSo... said...

I thank God for the privilege of a biblical foundation provided by His servants through His word.