Hermeneutics (part 1)

These notes come from a recent lecture i gave at my home church…

Applicational Hermeneutics

I. The Problem
We live in a day and age when people want to express there opinions at almost any cost.

(E.G.) Radio shows: Jim Rome, Sean Hannity, Howard Stern, etc.
TV Shows: Oprah Winifrey, Dr. Phil, Jerry Springer, etc.
Internet: Everybody and their grandma seems to have a blog these days.

Americans like to share their opinion in just about every venue imaginable…This attitude has inevitably permeated herself into the church. I think that this can be both a positive thing and a negative thing.

Dialogue teaching is one, of many different ways, the Bible can be taught during: small group settings, Sunday school classes, or even home bible studies. Dialogue & Interaction can be helpful for both the teacher (clarity) and the students (understanding/attention).

Expository exultation (ie. biblical preaching) should never be replaced by these popular teaching methods; But that doesn’t mean other forms of teaching don’t have a place in the life of the church…. (That’s exactly why our church offers a variety of teaching styles during our sunday school hour and FLOCK groups).

I don’t have time tonight to go into all the different ways Postmodern thought has affected the church…Suffice to say it has; in a variety of ways.

One of the more common errors is a very catchy but potentially unwise small group question: WHAT DOES THIS BIBLE PASSAGE MEAN TO YOU? (Have you heard this one before?) The emphasis is on the TO YOU part.

Some people believe a passage of Scripture can rightly mean multiple things to different people… Certain teachers would have you believe the Bible can be rightly explained with multiple, contradictory interpretations. So they ask: WHAT’S YOUR personal take on THIS VERSE? What does this passage mean to you? Some ask this question AS IF absolute truth was simply a by-product of modernity…As if truth were relative…Professor Roy Zuck wisely asks, “If the Bible can be made to mean anything we want, how can it be a reliable guide?”

When it comes to interpreting the Bible my fallible opinion and your personal impressions don’t matter too much. One Pastor put it this way, “the meaning of Scripture is the Scripture.” In other words, IF you don’t have the correct interpretation, you don’t have the Scriptures! You can not rightly apply a passage if you have the WRONG interpretation of the biblical text.

Friends, this is one of the reasons why sound hermeneutics are so essential! One of the most important disciplines for Christians to grow in, is learning how to apply sound hermeneutical principles to the biblical text. This is a crucial discipline for all of us to grow in.

This needs to happen regardless of the ministry context:
A) In our Children’s ministries…
B) Ladies Bible Study,
C) During Youth Group,
D) Adult Flocks,
E) Sunday School time,
F) at home during family devotions,
G) During biblical counseling sessions,
H) & obviously in the pulpit on Sunday mornings.

If you’d like one key verse that supports my thesis carefully, study 2 Timothy 2:15, “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth.”

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