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As a student of God’s Word for over 40 years, there is one simple question that fills my heart and mind as I read the Bible, “What does this passage mean?”
Bible teachers are called to explain the Bible, to help people understand what the Bible means, and how it fits together into one powerful message from God to us.
The only way to apply God’s Word correctly is to understand first what God has said, what He meant, and then what response He desires from us. That is why we have started a monthly study of the elements of Biblical Interpretation.
Someone long ago told me that my job as a Bible Expositor was to build a bridge that transported people from where live in the present, back to what God said and did in the historic context of His Word: and then to bring them back into their daily lives understanding what God expected from them.
To build that bridge we must realize that there is a gap between them and us.
1. A Gap of History (“they lived in a very different time”);
2. A Gap of Geography (“they lived in a very different place”);
3. A Gap of Culture (“they lived in a very different way”);
4. A Gap of Language (“they spoke in a very different way”).
So the first elements of Biblical Interpretation are bridges that help us create an understanding of the history, geography, culture, and language that surrounds the world of the Bible.
The Bible was set in Real History that is Archaeologically Verifiable
The historicity of many of the world’s religious books is at times questionable, but God’s Word has been continuously verified by each new archaeological find. We can place most of the Biblical characters into a timeline that opens the doors to understanding historic events in light of God’s Word.
The Bible Portrays Literal Geographic Places
Biblical geography makes the Bible come alive. Since everything happened somewhere, it is vital to see the “where” of all of God’s dealings with His people and plan.
The Bible Reflects Specific Cultures
Here are links to the Virtual Tour Study Resources we are using:
1. The Jerusalem Map: https://amzn.to/3xWMAtX
2. The Holy Land Map: https://amzn.to/3f8zp0b
3. The MacArthur Study Bible I use: https://amzn.to/33vqwsm
4. The Best Cross-Reference Guide to the Bible: https://amzn.to/3vtFqLU
5. The Oxford Holy Land Guide: https://amzn.to/3eCdAY3
6. The Larger Moleskin Notebook I use: https://amzn.to/3biMwLh
7. The Smaller Moleskin Notebook I use: https://amzn.to/33vTNmN
8. This is the personal-sized Bible I take with me everywhere as I travel, and that you see in the videos: https://amzn.to/3tM11ha
9. These are the Bible Tabs I showed you on the videos: https://amzn.to/3boMDVt
10. The ESV Audio Bible: https://amzn.to/3bJ4WF5
11. The NKJV Audio/Dramatized Bible: https://amzn.to/3u4BqA3
12. The KJV Audio Bible: https://amzn.to/3hHEnny
13. The NIV Dramatized Bible: https://amzn.to/2RD1Uvf
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