1.09. How I Approach the Bible, pt 1

As I said:

My main approach to theology is biblical theology. In other words: I start with passages from the Christian Bible and move from those texts into descriptions of the things I’m studying, the things I see there.

When I approach the Bible, Old or New Testament, I try to read it two ways.

First, I try to read it historically. That means asking the question, “What did the writers mean to say when they wrote this?” What was going on in their churches, in the nation of Israel, in their lives, when they wrote the words of the Bible passage I’m studying?

What did the writers want their readers to get from this text? I’m assuming they wrote their parts of the Bible to be understood. It’s not just a pastiche or scam, or something that was written to make the writers sound wise but incomprehensible.

I’m assuming that the writers wanted the things they wrote to have effect; the readers were supposed to DO SOMETHING with what they wrote: believe something different, do something different (or keep on doing something difficult the same way, refusing to give up.)

These are HISTORICAL questions. What did the writers mean when they wrote this? What did the readers understand when they read this?

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