Spring 2014

Five Tips for Better Bible Reading

By Kenneth Berding

Want to get the most out of your Bible reading, better grasping what God wants you to understand in his Word? These five guidelines from Kenneth Berding’s Bible Revival will help:

1. Pay Attention To The Context, Please!

“Paying attention to the context is the most basic thing you need to do if you want a clear understanding of what you’re reading.”

2. Remember What Category Of Literature You’re Reading.

“This will help you to recognize whether it needs to be read more literally (like historical narrative) or more figuratively (like an apocalypse or a parable), or in some other way.”

3. Don’t Forget That You’re Reading Cross-cultural Literature.

“Most of the Bible was originally written to people living in the area of the world we call the Middle East. It wasn’t written in the 21st century, nor was it written in English. … This means that you should first ask what something meant to them before asking what it means to you.”

4. Allow Scripture To Interpret Scripture.

“If you keep in mind that the passage in front of you doesn’t stand alone — that it is one part of all that God has revealed in his Word — you will protect yourself from drifting into mistaken and harmful interpretations.”

5. Keep It Connected To The Big Story.

“The big story of the Bible is nothing more and nothing less than a story about Jesus. Everything in the Old Testament gets funnelled toward Jesus. Everything. This is true whether you notice it the first time you read it or not.”

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  • Michael Yuen, M.A. (SICS '06) July 2, 2014 at 5:08 PM

    Wow! Brilliant succinct summary of my old hermeneutic textbook at Talbot Seminary. Just think that each item is so loaded that a whole week could be spent on each item. If you think of expansion and that there is an even larger in-depth picture, you'll do just fine. Pass this on to many many others!

  • Yesutor Gumenu May 20, 2015 at 3:27 AM

    Great!!! Good skills to start with to better appropriate the ancient Word. The one that made my heart leap for joy is the part that says it's all about Jesus. Surely, keeping Him in view will help us escape a lot of misinterpretation. Thank you for sharing!!!

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Issue Highlights

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  • Open the Book

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  • Biblical Literacy Quiz

    Test your biblical literacy with this 20-question quiz. No Googling, Bible-opening or other cheating allowed!

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