The main reason why it is important to understand figures of speech in the Bible is to interpret Scripture accurately. Serious misinterpretations of Scripture come from calling something figurative that is literal and calling something literal that is figurative.
In his second letter to Timothy, Paul wrote that “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Christians from the apostles until now have, like Paul, regarded Scripture as central to the life and growth of the Church.
But even though we know its importance to our lives, too often our knowledge and application of Scripture remain minimal. Why? Perhaps sitting down to study the Bible might seem intimidating, or it could just be difficult to carve out some devotional time. Maybe you have questions about the Bible, but you aren’t sure where to look for answers.
Let these tools, articles, audio sermons, and resources help you incorporate the Scriptures more fully into your life.
Some people are much older at 40 than others are at 70. Why? Attitude! To build up attitude muscles, forget your age, focus on your goals, and remember to follow your God.
Sometimes we seem inundated by laws and rules, but whether or not we like them they’re usually there for a reason. The same goes for God’s Word. He gives us laws for our protection and well-being. When we go against God’s laws we find ourselves living with regret, disappointment, and heartache.
When the Apostle Paul was alone in Athens, as recorded in Acts 17, he found himself in the busy market place full of idols in the streets of Athens, far away from home and a long way from Christian friends. It’s in that context that we are given an example of the fruit of biblical preparation and compassion as Paul delivered a free-speech platform and proclaimed the God of heaven and earth and His Son, Jesus Christ, crucified and risen from the dead.
We have been learning how to study the Bible for ourselves, through observation, interpretation, correlation, and then application. We observe what a passage says, interpret what it means, correlate what it says elsewhere about the same subject, and then ultimately we apply it.
You don’t have to be brilliant or significantly creative to know the Bible, but you do have to spend time preparing, studying, praying, and focusing your time and attention on the text of Scripture. Preparation is essential.
We have previously spent time learning about observation, interpretation, and correlation in the process of learning how to get into the Word for ourselves. Now, we come to the crowning part of the learning process—the application of God’s truth to our lives.
Many false teachers and heretics quote eloquently from Scripture, but distort God’s Word to serve their own purposes. Chuck Swindoll describes the critical importance of context when interpreting the Bible.
Many Christians have good intentions about reading the Bible, but struggle to understand what it actually says. Chuck Swindoll explains how to observe and interpret God’s Word.