Home Forums Dimensions Track Studying the Bible for All Its Worth

This topic contains 25 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Nicoleh hHernandez 11 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #4423

    stephenlawes
    Keymaster

    After you have listened to the lectures for each lesson you need to post a comment about something that you found interesting. You also need to post a follow-up comment on two(2) other students comments on the lectures. (Please include the Lesson or Chapter number at the beginning of your comment. If there are no other students comments in the topic then you only need to post your own comment).

    • This topic was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  stephenlawes.
    • This topic was modified 2 years, 4 months ago by  stephenlawes.
  • #6083

    stephenlawes
    Keymaster

    Start posting your responses to Studying the Bible for All Its Worth course here!

  • #7872

    Lisa Jones
    Participant

    I am happy to understand the definitions of exegesis and hermeneutics now. This was a very good introduction, I look forward to hearing more!

    • #8439

      coopertlc123
      Participant

      This is a particular area of interest to me as well. “History and Authenticity of the Bible ” is an excellent course as well.

  • #7963

    Rebeca Pastrana
    Participant

    Lesson one
    The need to Interpret
    It is interesting to see how in this first lesson they considered to divide the Bible into ten categories, considering which part of the Bible we are reading. I have never thought to do it this way even though I have considered different aspects such as: history, place, location, and time. This really enforced me to pay more attention to why they decided to do so. It gives me a different perspective, and I do agree the Bible requires effort to interpret.

    – Rebeca Pastrana

    • #8440

      coopertlc123
      Participant

      I think the ten divisions are actually ten different literary types.

  • #7964

    Rebeca Pastrana
    Participant

    Lesson two
    What is a good translation?
    In this lesson I realize how important is to know and understand the culture you are translating for. So, the concept can be delivered as normal and natural without confusion. Thus, such translation is not even ambiguous because the Bible was not written to create confusion, and therefore, we must pay attention on accordance to the versions we are using.

    – Rebeca Pastrana

    • #8442

      coopertlc123
      Participant

      I guess understanding the culture works both ways. Understand the culture you are translating from and to.

  • #7965

    Rebeca Pastrana
    Participant

    Lesson three
    Studying the epistles
    In this lesson, I understand the importance of reading “contextually” from the biblical teaching in its entirety, or meaning comes from the whole thing. Someone cannot understand the Bible if he/she does not read all parts affiliated that involve the situation. In this way, we do not misinterpret or misunderstand the purpose.

    – Rebeca Pastrana

    • #8444

      coopertlc123
      Participant

      I agree. This is one of the most common practices by clergy and laymen alike. Out of context. Many people explain the meaning of scripture who haven’t even read the entire Bible. I believe in context includes being in context with the message of the entire Bible.

    • #8882

      Nicoleh hHernandez
      Participant

      Reading the bible in context of the time is definitely one of the most important take-aways from this set. It’s important for anything anyone reads from a previous time period or culture of which they lack awareness. Without first understanding the cultural and historical context, we will barely understand the direct references, much less the allusions.

  • #8438

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 1 There are to different literary types utilized in the Bible. These types have their own rules as to how to interpret them. Some of these types are poetry, letters and laws. We all can interpret the Bible if we are willing to work hard at it and utilize resources available to us such as a concordance and of course prayer and teaching from the Holy Spirit. We do not have to be or rely upon a professional for interpretation. Unique interpretations are usually wrong. Exegesis and hermeneutics are two words used in the process and definitions of Biblical interpretation. Hermeneutics is the science or rules and regulations and exegesis is the process.

  • #8441

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 2: Stuart stated that he feels the NIV is the best translation. Ouch! I try to stay away from debating what this or that means, in the Bible, unless it effects ones eternal Salvation. I am very suspicious of the NIV in that I think it diminishes the Deity of Jesus Christ. One example: Read First John:5 6-9 in King James and compare same to NIV.

    That being said, This was an interesting lesson. The word Virgin, used by Paul in 1 Cor 7:36 could be translated several ways; virgin daughter, virgin he is engaged to, fiancé, or partner in celibacy. I love the last one. We should all accept our pre-marital relationships, boyfriend-girlfriend or engaged couples as partners in celibacy. What a concept.

    The lesson also spoke of Dynamic equivalence -vs- literal translations. Dynamic equivalence is where the translator decided what they think was meant by a certain word, sentence, paragraph or concept and then made a decision as to the best way to say it. One example is the NIV which to me, is a scary and risky translation. Literal translation is when the translator took the original words used and tried to find the best word of the language being translated to for the translation. The King James is an example of that and according to many scholars, is most likely the closest to the original text and certainly most closely aligns itself with the 86,000 writings of the early church leaders.

    Some of the challenges faced by the translators two of which are; many words have many meanings ( run was used as an example) culture of when and where the text was written (1 Cor 7:36 would be an example),

  • #8443

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 3: It is important to understand how a sentence, verse or word, or paragraph is used in context, which really means as it relates to the entire book and I will go out on a limb and say entire Bible. The letters and epistles written by the apostles, defined in this lecture as representatives with authority to speak, are basically treated as the same because the letters which were intended to be a little more private, soon became as public as all the epistles. An example of out of context was in I Corinthians where Paul said the women should cover their heads with a covering or scarf. Further reading shows that their long hair is considered a covering. When we add historical culture and further reading, we find that Paul was talking about men should not try to look like women and vice versa. We should look at today’s culture to apply this in relationship to how we dress today. It is a relative thing.

  • #8445

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 4: This lesson deals with Hermeneutics, or how something is interpreted. Several challenges exist in the interpretation of scripture. One would be culture. There are definitely things in the New Testament that applied only to that time or group of people. Timothy was used for several examples. Paul asked Timothy to bring his cloak and parchments. Paul told Timothy to drink less water and drink wine daily, for his health issues. These obviously do not apply to us today. However, Paul told Timothy continue in what he had learned and it would make him strong in Christ. This obviously applies today. The first basic rule of hermeneutics is that text cant mean what it never meant to the author or his intended readers. This makes it highly unlikely that we will come up with a brand new interpretation and be correct. We need to apply sound exegesis, study and compare, and be able to identify comparable situations from the culture then to the culture now. Homosexuality was a sin then and still is. In reverse, slavery was a culturally accepted thing and was apparently not considered a sin. Today, I believe it would be sinful to engage in slavery. The bottom line is we need to determine what is essential to the core message of the Bible and stand firm on issues of salvation. Disagree in love and understanding and in my opinion, only be adamant when salvation is at stake.

  • #8450

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 5: Old Testament Narratives was a good lesson in English Lit. My take away is that God is the main character, or the hero in all Old Testament narratives. The human characters are not the main characters. When you read one, ask yourself about what God did and you will better understand the plot. Example: David and Goliath is not about what David did, it was about what God did through David.

  • #8451

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 6: The Book of Acts serves as a model for the church from the days of the author until the return of Jesus. It covers the development and expansion of he church from Jerusalem. This growth and expansion was done through the Holy Spirit and Luke was careful to show that. Acts, even it is a model for the churches, does not go into a lot of detail about the structure and organization of the church. There are not a lot of rules and the understanding of repentance is that it can happen in any number of ways. The main theme would be to believe in the Holy Spirit and that individual lives can change through Him and that entire communities can be changed through Him. This is a “Big Picture” book, not one of details.

  • #8454

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 8: A parable is a divisive riddle, about the Kingdom of God, that is designed to cause a reaction or action from the parable

  • #8455

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 9: old Testament Law. We have a covenant with God which is like a contract and the laws are paradigms that are examples or models what God expects from us. How He wants us to live our lives and to be holy. In this covenant, or contract, God reveals what He will do for us. Some of the Old Testament laws are apodictic, like the 10 commandments which are straight forward commands. Other Old Testament laws are casuistic, which means they only apply if you find yourself in the situation referenced by the law. The example given was if you dedicate your land to God, it will be valued based upon the amount of seed required to plant it. These types of laws become informational when not applicable. The only laws from the Old Testament that are required from the New Testament are only those laws explicitly renewed in the New Testament. The lesson states that there are twelve laws still applicable from the Old Testament. The 10 commandments and Love God with all your heart… and love thy neighbor as thyself. Through and in the laws, God is showing us the type of person He wants us to be. Those Old Testament laws that are not laws for us today are still the word of God which provides us with important information, shows us the heart of God, and points directly to the fact that we all need a savior.

  • #8456

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 10: Today, when we hear the word prophecy, we think of predicting the future. The Old Testament prophets, although they did some prediction of the future, were in place to speak God’s word, or to speak in God’s behalf, to the Israelites. It was their job to mediate between God and His children. They would tell them when God was mad and what they needed to rectify the situation. They generally included the punishment should they not comply. Jesus said that of men born of women and of all the prophets, John the Baptist was the greatest of them all; yet the least (of Christians) is greater than he. This is because we have something they didn’t have, the Holy Spirit dwelling within us.

  • #8457

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 7: The different styles of Gospel writers was utilized to reach a broad collection of different peoples. The Gospels are unique in that there is nor ever has been anything like them. John is the one Gospel that is significantly different than the other three. Mark is believed to have proceeded Mathew and Luke. Jesus taught by parables, divisive riddles designed to extract or evoke an action from the listener. One thing the instructor eluded to was that the authors of the Gospels chose what they were going to include. I do not believe that. I believe the entire Bible, every word, was God inspired and God Breathed.

  • #8460

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 11: The Prayers of God’s people is about the Psalms. The Book Of Psalms contains 150 Psalms which were written by many people over a 1000 year span of time. They are unique in the Bible in that they are not only God’s language to us but also our language to God. The Psalms were, at one time, divided into five books and were used as songs of worship by the Israelites. Every Psalm is still relevant today as they teach us how to worship and praise God as well as show us how God wanys us to relate to Him.

  • #8461

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 12: Gaining Wisdom mostly covers the three primary wisdom books Job, Ecclesiastes, and Proverbs. Chokmah is the Hebrew word that was translated as wisdom. A more accurate translation would be, “Godly choice making ability”. Most of the Proverbs are written in a memorable fashion so they are easy to recall. Most are also briefly stated and stated kind of like a puzzle, in order to get you to think about them. Proverbs gives advice in many areas of our lives, a couple of which are: marrying someone wisely, how not to offend someone, making quick decisions that you cant spend a lot of time on, and how to deal with someone that is angry. Ecclesiastes, among other things, talks about how pointless life would be if there were no after life. we should live our lives understanding there is an after life and a judgment. Our purpose is to worship God and to fear him and keep His commandments. Job, besides being about patience, is about the realization that there isn’t always a correlation between how you live your life and the good or bad things that happen to you. God wants all of our choices to be Godly choices.

  • #8462

    coopertlc123
    Participant

    Lesson 13: Revelations can be looked at as a letter from John to the seven churches in Asia Minor. John, the author of Revelations, picks up where Old Testament prophets such as Daniel, Zachariah, Isaiah, and Ezekiel left off. He brought the sweep of history into the future all the way to its completion, with evil being eliminate and God being victorious. The book is a combination of past, present and future events and contains letters, epistles, and apocalyptic sections. There are 6 major schools of interpretation of Revelations with many variations within each school. A lot of the book utilizes cryptic and symbolic language by using numbers, animals, the dragon as Satan, and various other methods. John sees images and is told to write them down but was not told as was Daniel, to seal them up. John sees seven scenes and each scene has seven events that take place. Revelations also includes a warning that we are not to be Sunday church and occasional Bible reading throughout the week, Christians. God and our walk with Him must be the central focus of our lives as opposed to another element of our lives. Do not be lukewarm. Fortunately the book ends on a very positive note. Evil will be defeated and eliminated. God will be victorious.

    • #8883

      Nicoleh hHernandez
      Participant

      The conversation on revelation was one of my favorites. I really enjoyed the way he discussed all the connections to the old testament books, going back and forth to draw out how this is a continuation of revelation.

  • #8881

    Nicoleh hHernandez
    Participant

    These are my notes from the units…

    The Need to Interpret
    No special skills are needed in order to understand and interpret the bible. However, there are some generally applied rules to interpreting the bible which differ based on the kind of literary style in that bible section.

    What is a Good Translation
    The challenge for a translator is that there are differences between words and concepts, and the translator must be able to understand the concept in order to choose the right word to use. Words can have various meanings based on geographical location, and also the reader may have a different understanding of the word than the translator was using. Don’t use a translation just because you like it.

    Studying the Epistles
    It is important to understand the context of things in the bible. Good hermeneutics allows for proper interpretation, but requires good exegisis to obtain the full understanding of the meaning of passages. Understanding the history, culture, and other personal issues of the time is critical to good exegisis.

    Hermeneutics
    Hermeneutics is the science of interpretation. There are rules involved in interpretation, to ensure consistency. There is a concern about whether or not people will apply the interpretation consistently, particularly when personal preferences come into play.

    Old Testament Narratives
    The Old Testament narratives are more than just old stories. These narratives generally are non-fiction stories, which help explain some important concept. Individual story narratives must be seen within the context of the rest of the reading. God is ultimately the major character of every narrative.

    The Book of Acts
    Questions whether or not we are supposed to be seeing the acts as things to replicate or examples in which we are given permission. Some of them are lessons of what not to do. It tells the history of the early church, and serves as a model for the church.

    One Story, Four Perspectives
    Matthew, Mark, Luke and John have no real parallels to any stories in history, and very few things that can be compared to them in all literature. These stories obviously help bring people closer to an understanding of Jesus and can help, although they are not required to know in order to believe. Having multiple gospels helps create more possibilities to reach different people, with different personalities, who learn differently from each other.

    Getting the Point
    Parables are stories intended to make you think, and question how you would act in those situations, and whether or not this is speaking to you or about you. Similitudes are similar to parables, but they are talking about things that are like something else. Allegories are stories, usually using non-human characters which represent humans, and the things that happen are meant to refer to things that happen. In parables, it’s critical to find the point.

    Interpreting the Law
    Talks about how the old testament law still applies to Christians today. Some parts of the old testament are renewed in the new covenant. All the old testament is still the word of God to us, even if it isn’t the command of God to us. What was once an actual rule to keep, is now information for us to appreciate.

    Old Testament Prophecy
    Important to understand that prophecy is speaking the word of God, not fortune telling or predicting the future. A prophet is more than an interpreter, they are a spokesperson for God. They were inspired with their words by God in their time, and should not be used to predict current day events.

    The Prayers of Gods People
    People should talk to God regularly, daily, and constantly. God appreciates being praised, and wants to hear from us. Psalms can be used to guide your prayer, or inspire. The Psalter is the 5 books of the psalms, collections of sets of psalms.

    Gaining Gods Wisdom
    Wisdom isn’t something that comes from formal education, work education, or anywhere else from God. The right choices are the Godly choices, and gaining wisdom from God helps you make better choices in your life and orients you toward God.

    Lakes of Fire, Streets of Gold
    Revelation is a challenging book, and is somewhat of a continuation of the apocalyptic story begun in the Old Testament. Apocalyptic literature was popular at the time, and people were much more aware of how to read it. Some imagry used is easy to comprehend, others are very confusing. The interpreted images are the starting point to understand the rest.

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