Understanding the Bible: a basic introduction to biblical interpretation Sample Essay

Religion is a powerful tool in the universe today. with different people imputing to diverse spiritual beliefs. Religion defines the ways of life and civilization of people ; hence. stressing its influence among different people in the universe ( Kalman. 2009 ) . Religions have characteristics and elements that guide their faithful on how to populate harmonizing to the principles of the several faith. Christianity is a faith with followings the universe over. and continues to act upon the lives of its followings. The Bible is an of import book that contains the cardinal beliefs and truths about Christianity. Christians believe that the Bible contains God’s message to his people and it plays a immense function in beef uping between them and God. Since its origin. the Bible has continued to move as a pertinent medium of pass oning the will of God to Christians. Christians have responded to the Bible in different ways with a subdivision of them reasoning that it is difficult to understand the significances contained in it. while others argue that the linguistic communication used helps them to understand the significance implied ( Montague. 2007 ) . Furthermore. there are English words used in the Bible that have changed over clip. This is attributed to the interlingual renditions and alterations that the Bible has experienced over the old ages. The cultural context of a Bible interlingual rendition has a important influence in finding the pick of words used in books. Wordss that were used in old Bible interlingual renditions do non look in today’s interlingual renditions because of the demand to fit the message with the cultural intension of the linguistic communication used.

How the linguistic communication of the Bible has been a hinderance in understanding its significance

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Understanding the message and significances of the Bible is so dependent on assorted factors. The context of the text and the words used are pertinent in assisting understand the significance implied. Without understanding the context. the words or phrases used in a Bible text causes hinderances in comprehension. In my personal experience. the linguistic communication of the Bible has been both a hinderance and aid in my apprehension of the significances and messages implied in several texts. The hinderance in understanding the message of the Bible roots from the complexness of the words or phrases used. every bit good as failure to grok the context of the text. Theologians argue that in order to understand the linguistic communication of the Bible. it is imperative for readers to link the context of the linguistic communication with the words used ( McQuilkin. 2009 ) . Surely. the deficiency of groking the context of bible texts and the words used has posed huge challenges in my apprehension of the implied message and significance.

The Old and New Testaments of the Bible present different contexts and constructs about the Christian faith. The message of God does non alter. but the attacks used in pass oning the message are different in assorted foreparts ; hence. doing it progressively of import for one to understand the linguistic communication and context used in order to deduce the intended significance. In my experience. I frequently find it a hinderance comprehending the message contained in some bible transitions. peculiarly because of the context used in the transitions. Failure to hold on the intended significance in the several text frequently causes confusion or deformation of the original significance ( McQuilkin. 2009 ) . There are phrases and words in the Bible that conveying confusion in understanding the intended significance. The ability to grok the significance is hindered by the failure to link the pick of words and the context of the text.

An illustration of the Bibles that create hinderances in apprehension is 2nd Timothy 2: 15. The words. justly spliting the word of truth… . . ( 2nd Timothy 2:15. King James Version ) imply assorted significances that readers can deduce. Personally. the words. justly spliting raise confusion on where to put accent ; clearly. there is the possibility of ambiguity in the procedure of understanding the Bible. On one manus. the words might connote the thought of spliting the word of God ; while on the other manus. the words besides imply the thought of managing the word of truth in the right manner. Based on the words used in the poetry. it is apparent that there is a quandary in the ability to understand the intended significance. In mention to the poetry. it is expressed that I find it hard to deduce significance from words and phrases that elicit crisp contrast in intending. In such cases. the context of the Bible ; the old poetries and the poetries instantly after the chief poetry are of import in assisting pull out the right significance. It is slippery to acquire the intended significance without sing the other words in the poetry. After a critical apprehension of the words used in the poetry. it is certain that the Bible negotiations of managing the word of truth right. as opposed to spliting the word of truth.

Another illustration is the usage of the word “dragon” in Revelation chapter 3:1 ( King James Version ) . The book of Revelation speaks of the hereafter ; hence. it is hard to understand some of the elements it portrays. The linguistic communication used in the book is non simplistic as in other books of the Bible. In my sentiment. I perceive the book of Revelation to be the most hard to read and understand. Whether the word “dragon” in the poetry is nonliteral or non. it is hard to understand its significance. Therefore. in order to hold on the message in the poetry. it is pertinent to near the text in relation to the background of the book of Revelation. From a critical position. it is evident that the message portrayed in the Bible roots from the context of the text every bit good as the background of the book. For illustration. a historical book deems it necessary for a reader to use the historical dimension of comprehension. while a prophetic book like Revelation requires a reader to hold a prophetic apprehension. Indeed. failure to set into consideration the context of the words and phrases in the Bible is a hinderance to hold oning the intended significance of the words.

An English word that has changed in significance

Bible interlingual renditions have increased over clip. therefore impacting the significance of some words used in the Bible. The desire to make out to as many people as possible with the message of the Bible has prompted the demand to hold assorted versions and interlingual renditions of the Bible. The passages that the Bible has faced in mention to interlingual renditions have influenced the alteration in significance of some of the words used. For case. in Philippians 4:6. the gap phrase. “Be careful for nothing… . ” ( King James Version ) . has changed over clip. and has been replaced with the word dying. The word careful meant that one should non let himself have anything disturbing him. In other words. it challenges people to avoid many attentions in their lives. Over clip. the word has changed and has being substituted with words like dying and concern. The usage of the word dying or disquieted appears to hold a solid significance as compared to the word careful ; hence. interlingual renditions have been forced to switch the linguistic communication used. Furthermore. measuring the word from another angle. it is apparent that the word careful might non convey out a simplistic apprehension of the text to some readers. therefore motivating transcribers to happen other words that can convey out a refined significance.

Language displacements because of the cultural context of the transcribers of the Bible. For case. the phrase. “Be careful for nothing” has changed with clip because the cultural position of the transcribers has besides shifted with clip. Therefore. English words in assorted Bible interlingual renditions do non alter in significance because of being wrong or inferior. but due to the cultural influences that affect the linguistic communication used in interlingual rendition ( McQuilkin. 2009 ) .


In decision. it is noteworthy to foreground that the Bible is a complex book that requires changeless alterations to fit with the differing cultural differences in the universe today. The words used in Bible interlingual renditions are connected with the civilization of the linguistic communication used in the interlingual rendition. Therefore. the pick of words is of import in enabling readers to grok the context of the text in the Bible. In add-on. linking the context of Bible and the words or phrases used is important in heightening the ability to understand the message being relayed. In order to avoid hinderances in groking the Bible. one should set into consideration the background of the text in inquiry.


Montague. G. T. ( 2007 ) . Understanding the Bible: a basic debut to scriptural reading ( Rev. & A ; expanded erectile dysfunction. ) . New York: Paulist Press. McQuilkin. J. R. ( 2009 ) . Understanding and using the Bible. Chicago: Moody Press. Kalman. B. ( 2009 ) . What is faith? New York: Crabtree Pub.

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