Wednesday, February 18, 2009

good Bible reading and study

Yesterday in Scot's study on James, he pointed out that we need to read the passage which tells us to "consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds," in light of the rest of book of James. Then Scot listed some of the problems going on there, mentioned in the book: essentially about the rich oppressing the poor, even among professing believers. 

While I don't think we have to exclude other trials not mentioned in James, I do think this is an apt example of how we need to read Scripture. We need to read a passage well, in its immediate context, be that a pericope (like a parable, or a story/event of Jesus and his disciples, etc.), or with reference to the rest of the book, and then from there with reference to books like it (example, other books by the same Biblical author, others of the same genre like wisdom or apocalyptic), and from there the same testament whether "old" as in the Hebrew Bible, or "new". Then at last with reference to all of Scripture.

I'm not against Bible promise books, but I think such tend to faciliate reading Scripture out of context. It is possible to miss the point of a passage, or verse entirely, possibly interpreting it concerned about our own interests and according to our own worldview, which may be at odds with the interests and worldview in Christ God is calling us toward.

Again, I commend that study at Jesus Creed. And that we learn more and more to read Scripture, God's word well, in its context. Such a study can help us toward that. It was a good reminder for me.

What would you like to add here?


Anonymous said...

thanks for the visit and comment.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes, Nancy. First time I've played Vineyard for quite some time, and I loved it. A good song, "Surrender." And another one I like quite well, "All Who Are Thirsty"- "Come Lord Jesus come, Holy Spirit come."