How to Interpret Scripture
By Scripture AloneBSola Scriptura
Lesson #5 for May 2, 2020
AScripture alone is the true lord and master of all writings and doctrine on [email protected] Luther, Luther=s Works, vol. 32: Career of the Reformer II, eds. Hilton C. Oswald and Helmut T. Lehmann (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1999), pp. 11, 12.C[as quoted in Adult Sabbath School Bible Study Guide* for Sunday, April 26].I'
Acts 17:10-11: 10As soon as night came, the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived, they went to the synagogue. 11The people there were more open?minded than the people in Thessalonica. They listened to the message with great eagerness, and every day they studied the Scriptures to see if what Paul said was really true.CAmerican Bible Society. (1992). The Holy Bible: The Good News Translation* (2nd ed.,Acts 17:10B11). New York: American Bible Society.
What we believe in matters of faith is true only if our beliefs correspond to the witness of the whole of Scripture, to all of Scripture (tota Scriptura). This precept implies the unity of Scripture and the premise that the Bible is sufficiently clear in what it states.CAdult Teachers Sabbath School Bible Study Guide* 65.H'
But God will have a people upon the earth to maintain the Bible, and the Bible only, as the standard of all doctrines and the basis of all reforms. The opinions of learned men, the deductions of science, the creeds or decisions of ecclesiastical councils, as numerous and discordant as are the churches which they represent, the voice of the majorityBnot one nor all of these should be regarded as evidence for or against any point of religious faith. Before accepting any doctrine or precept, we should demand a plain AThus saith the Lord@ in its support.CEllen G. White, The Great Controversy* 595.1.H [Can you support your beliefs from the Scripture?]I
Revelation 22:18-19: 18I, John, solemnly warn everyone who hears the prophetic words of this book: if anyone adds anything to them, God will add to his or her punishment the plagues described in this book. 19And if anyone takes anything away from the prophetic words of this book, God will take away from them their share of the fruit of the tree of life and of the Holy City, which are described in this book.CGood News Bible.*H
2 Peter 1:20-21: 20Above all else, however, remember that no one can explain by himself or herself a prophecy in the Scriptures. 21For no prophetic message ever came just from human will, but people were under the control of the Holy Spirit as they spoke the message that came from God.CGood News Bible.*H
John 5:39: AYou study the Scriptures, because you think that in them you will find eternal life. And these very Scriptures speak about [email protected]od News Bible.*
Luke 24:27,44-45: 27And Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets.... 44Then he said to them, AThese are the very things I told you about while I was still with you: everything written about me in the Law of Moses, the writings of the prophets, and the Psalms had to come true.@
45Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.CGood News Bible.*H [Jesus was saying that the entire Old Testament was about Him!]I
1 Corinthians 10:1-4: I want you to remember, my brothers and sisters, what happened to our ancestors who followed Moses. They were all under the protection of the cloud, and all passed safely through the Red Sea. 2In the cloud and in the sea they were all baptized as followers of Moses. 3All ate the same spiritual bread 4and drank the same spiritual drink. They drank from the spiritual rock that went with them; and that rock was Christ himself.CGood News Bible.*H
AThe consistent example of the Bible writers shows that the Scriptures are to be taken in their plain, literal sense, unless a clear and obvious figure is intended. . . . There is no stripping away of the >husk= of the literal sense in order to arrive at the >kernel= of a mystical, hidden, allegorical meaning, that only the initiated can [email protected]Handbook of Seventh?day Adventist Theology (Hagerstown, Md.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2000), p. 65.C[as quoted in Adult Sabbath School Bible Study Guide* for Tuesday, April 28].I
Romans 15:4: Everything written in the Scriptures was written to teach us, in order that we might have hope through the patience and encouragement which the Scriptures give us.CGood News Bible.*
The Bible is its own expositor. Scripture is to be compared with scripture. The student should learn to view the word as a whole, and to see the relation of its parts. He should gain a knowledge of its grand central theme, of God=s original purpose for the world, of the rise of the great controversy, and of the work of redemption.CEllen G. White, Education* 190.2.H Compare CT 462.1; LHU 115.2. [Where did the great controversy theme come from?]I
For six thousand years that mastermind [Satan] that once was highest among the angels of God has been wholly bent to the work of deception and ruin. And all the depths of satanic skill and subtlety acquired, all the cruelty developed, during these struggles of the ages, will be brought to bear against God=s people in the final conflict. And in this time of peril the followers of Christ are to bear to the world the warning of the Lord=s second advent; and a people are to be prepared to stand before Him at His coming, Awithout spot, and blameless.@2 Peter 3:14. At this time the special endowment of divine grace and power is not less needful to the church than in apostolic days.CEllen G. White, The Great Controversy* ix.4 (Introduction).I
You are not familiar with the Scriptures. If you had made God=s word your study, with a desire to reach the Bible standard and attain to Christian perfection, you would not have needed the Testimonies. It is because you have neglected to acquaint yourself with God=s inspired Book that He has sought to reach you by simple, direct testimonies.CEllen G. White, Testimonies for the Church,* vol. 2, 605.1; 5T* 664.3.' Compare LS 198.1.
The student of the Bible should be taught to approach it in the spirit of a learner. We are to search its pages, not for proof to sustain our opinions, but in order to know what God says.
A true knowledge of the Bible can be gained only through the aid of that Spirit by whom the word was given. And in order to gain this knowledge we must live by it. All that God=s word commands, we are to obey....
The study of the Bible demands our most diligent effort and persevering thought. As the miner digs for the golden treasure in the earth, so earnestly, persistently, must we seek for the treasure of God=s word.CEllen G. White, Education* 189.1-3.
When you make the Bible your food, your meat, and your drink, when you make its principles the elements of your character, you will know better how to receive counsel from God. I exalt the precious word before you today. Do not repeat what I have said, saying, ASister White said this,@ and ASister White said [email protected] Find out what the Lord God of Israel says, and then do what He commands.CEllen G. White, Selected Messages,* Book 3, 33.1.
God has not passed His people by and chosen one solitary man here and another there as the only ones worthy to be entrusted with His truth. He does not give one man new light contrary to the established faith of the body.... Let none be self?confident, as though God had given them special light above their brethren.... One accepts some new and original idea which does not seem to conflict with the truth. He ... dwells upon it until it seems to him to be clothed with beauty and importance, for Satan has power to give this false appearance. At last it becomes the all?absorbing theme, the one great point around which everything centers, and the truth is uprooted from the heart.... I warn you to beware of these side issues, whose tendency is to divert the mind from the truth. Error is never harmless. It never sanctifies, but always brings confusion and dissension.CEllen G. White, Testimonies for the Church,* vol. 5, 291.2-292.2 (1885); Last Day Events* 90.6-91.2.H Compare Mar 60; CW 45.2-46.2.
8 2020, Kenneth Hart, MD, MA, MPH. Permission is hereby granted for any noncommercial use of these materials. Free distribution of all or of a portion of this material such as to a Bible study class is encouraged. *Electronic version. HBold type is added. IText in brackets is added. 'Italic type is in the source. [email protected]
Last Modified: March 15, 2020
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Lesson 1: The Uniqueness of the Bible
58:30 | Apr. 04, 2020
Lesson 2: The Origin and Nature of the Bible
58:30 | Apr. 11, 2020
Lesson 3: Jesus and the Apostles' View of the Bible
58:30 | Apr. 18, 2020
Lesson 4: The Bible--the Authoritative Source of Our Theology
58:30 | Apr. 25, 2020
Lesson 6: Why Is Interpretation Needed?
58:30 | May. 09, 2020
Lesson 7: Language, Text, and Context
58:30 | May. 16, 2020
Lesson 8: Creation: Genesis as Foundation--Part 1
58:30 | May. 23, 2020
Lesson 9: Creation: Genesis as Foundation--Part 2
58:30 | May. 30, 2020
Lesson 10: The Bible as History
58:30 | Jun. 06, 2020
Lesson 11: The Bible and Prophecy
58:30 | Jun. 13, 2020
Lesson 12: Dealing With Difficult Passages
58:30 | Jun. 20, 2020
Lesson 13: Living by the Word of God
58:30 | Jun. 27, 2020
Lesson 8: Seeing the Invisible
58:30 | Aug. 20, 2022
Lesson 7: Indestructible Hope
58:30 | Aug. 13, 2022
Lesson 6: Struggling with All Energy
56:30 | Aug. 06, 2022
Lesson 5: Extreme Heat
58:30 | Jul. 30, 2022
Lesson 4: Seeing the Goldsmith's Face
58:30 | Jul. 23, 2022
Lesson 3: The Birdcage
58:30 | Jul. 16, 2022
Lesson 2: The Crucibles That Come
58:30 | Jul. 09, 2022
Lesson 1: The Shepherd's Crucible
58:30 | Jul. 02, 2022
Lesson 13: Israel in Egypt
58:30 | Jun. 25, 2022
Lesson 12: Joseph, Prince of Egypt
58:30 | Jun. 18, 2022
Lesson 11: Joseph, Master of Dreams
58:30 | Jun. 11, 2022
Lesson 10: Jacob-Israel
58:30 | Jun. 04, 2022
Lesson 9: Jacob the Supplanter
58:30 | May. 28, 2022