By Eren Mckay
Filed under Relationship With God
Keys to interpreting the Bible the right way through study
One little lie can ruin a whole lot. If somehow lies have slipped into our belief system we are bound to have major trouble up ahead.
Many false doctrines and even cults have begun because people were not careful to examine the true meaning of things.
This is why it is essential to follow certain guidelines when we interpret God’s word.
Word Study: Find other places in the Bible in which the word is used.
When we’re studying a certain scripture that teaches us a truth we must determine what the main words are in that verse. With those main words we can do a word study and find the many other places in which the word is used in the Bible.
A concordance that searches by the original word will be of great help to find out all of the contexts in which that word appears in Scripture. The other verses we find will validate or not our interpretation of the verse we started out with.
Many times one word has different meanings. If we do a word search we will have a thorough understanding of what the word truly means. We need to be 100% certain that the meaning used in the context of the Bible verse is the correct one. Performing a word study makes it much easier to eliminate false doctrine. But still, word study alone is not enough to be certain of an interpretation.
How can we be sure that what we have interpreted is the truth?
In psalm 119:160 we see that the sum of the word is truth. Notice that it says the SUM of thy word. That means the totality of it.
Sometimes we may read a verse and interpret it but then up ahead we find another verse that directly contradicts our “doctrine” or idea that we have believed.
Search for Verses that Contradict our Belief
When determining doctrine, we must actively pursue scriptures that seem to contradict the belief or doctrine that we have. If we find verses that have a meaning that counters our belief system we need to stop and study those verses also.
It is much better to have knowledge of these verses and address the issues that they may raise. Do not ignore specific verses simply because they don’t fit into what you believe. When we are searching out these verses we are demonstrating our openness to find out the truth.
Sometimes the verses may seem to be contradicting a doctrine when we read them superficially. But when we go deep and analyze the context and the word meanings we find that they actually do not contradict the original belief.
If after truly studying the verses we find that they do in fact contradict what we believed to be true, then we need put our doctrine in check. The Word of God can not lie so the error can only be found in our original interpretation.
Do not add or take away words to change the meaning of the verses
God’s word is very clear when exhorting us not to do this (Revelation 22:18-20)
Some people do this so that the verses can fit into their previous interpretation. This is one thing that cults love to do: add and take away words when their interpretation does not fit. They purposefully add a preposition here a noun there thinking that it’s okay because it’s “just a small word” while knowing that they are trying to manipulate the meaning.
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