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EDITION 2 : VOLUME 22 : Why the Bible Does Not Make Sense to Many Christians.

Learn to know the truth. Jn:8:32: And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. Before I learned to study the scriptures for myself I was in bondage to what others told me the scriptures meant. But when I did learn the proper way to study scripture not only did I find that I had been told wrong all those years; I also found out that tradition has nullified true Bible understanding. Yes, tradition instead of true Biblical principals are being taught in our churches. The only way to remedy this situation is to learn to study the scriptures for yourself. No can mislead you once you learn for yourself.

THE REDEEMER MAGAZINE- The Magazine for Thinking Christians.

Digital Version

Otis Media Publications Syndication Group Inc. 2014

THE REDEEMER®- VOLUME 22 ****EDITION 2 - OMPS® INC. 2014
 All articles in this magazine are written in whole or part by Dr. Otis T. Williams Sr. Th.D.....© 2014  These articles are the literary properties of Otis Media Publications Syndication Inc.©

 Why the Bible Does Not Make Sense to Many Christians

Synopsis by ... Dr. Otis T. Williams Sr. Th. D.

        As with trying to understand any letter or book one of the many things that must be understood is who or whom are the recipients of the letter or book. In other words who or whom is the letter written to. Until we realize who the letter is written to it will not make any sense as to why it was written. This same principal is the greatest aid in understanding the New Testament. Who was it written to? To answer this question all one has to do is usually go to the very beginning of the book or go to the very beginning of a particular chapter to find out who it is written to. One of the most shocking things to occur is that you will find out that it was not written to us. No! The New Testament was not written to us(Modern Day Christians).

  • What does the Bible say?
  • Who are the letters of the New Testament written to?
  • Do you know who wrote these letters?
  • What was the situation that caused these letters to be written?
  • How did the readers understand what was written?

Once the above questions are answered, the letters are much more easier to understand.

       The letters of the New Testament was not written to us. Before you get mad, stop and think what the letters say. Lets do a reality check.

  • The book of Romans was addressed to the 1st century Romans as proven by chapter 1 verse 7 of the same book. 7: To all that be in Rome, .......
  • The book of the Corinthians was written to the church of Christ at Corinth and saints at Achaia as noted in the beginning of the first chapters in each book. 1:1.... unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia:. It goes on such as to Timothy; to Titus: to the church at Galatia. To the seven churches of Asia. The list continues on.

      The letters of the New Testament were written to first century people and first century churches about first century events. It is obvious that God preserved these letters for the perpetual generations for our learning, instruction and convenience but they were not written to us. They were written and should be kept in the first century context to give the Bible a complete understanding. When we keep it in context we get a true and vivid understanding. When we read the letters of the New Testament we are indeed reading letters written to someone else. They must absolutely positively be understood as they are written. When the writers wrote about an event that was about to happen “soon”, he was referring to an event that was about to happen at that time in the first century. This principle has no problem when we read the Old Testament; so why is there so much problem when reading the New Testament.

      The books of the New Testament must be read from a first century perspective. The chapters and verses come to life when we read them through the lives and eyes of first century people. What messages were the writer trying to convey to them? How was the first century people to understand the phrases such as “about to occur” or “ at hand” or “soon”? When we use our traditional views we often nullify our understanding of God’s word or message.

     One of the most common practices today is to tear scripture from it’s historical setting and try to apply them to our modern day setting. Many preachers use first century scriptures and expound them as events that are soon to happen; possibly today. They fail to explain that the apostles in the first century were telling first century people about things that were “soon” to take place during that first century.

    John even wrote to the first century people telling them the time is “at hand.” Referring to something that was near to be exposed to them and not some where off into the far flung future. Revelation 1:3: Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

       The same is said of Jesus standing and talking to live(blood pumping in the veins)human being; telling them that some of them would not taste of death until he returned(the second coming). He meant to the first century generation and not our generation. The evidence is in the scriptures. Mt:16:28: Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom. Or look at the parallel passage of Mark. Mk:9:1: And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power. The same message is conveyed in Luke directing the message to first century people and not people of our generation. Lk:9:27: But I tell you of a truth, there be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God.

       Some of you would ask the question: how are we blessed? The answer is we are blessed today because Jesus kept his word and brought about the events that He said He would in their generation before some of them died. It is plain and simple when scripture is left in the first century context in which it was written; He did not fail. When we move the scripture out of the first century context; it makes Jesus a failure. We know Jesus cannot fail. Today Christians live with Christ in His kingdom. We are in Christ and He is in us. We today share with all Christians the blessings promised to Abraham. All nations were to be blessed through Abraham. This feat came about through Jesus Christ who was of Abraham’s seed. We have the salvation promised through Abraham. We are blessed with complete salvation.

       If we take the following verse out of the first century context and apply it to our present setting awaiting the second coming of Christ, then we do not have salvation. If Jesus has not appeared a second time as he promised to the first century generation; our salvation is not secured. Heb:9:28: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. Has Jesus appeared a second time as the writer of Hebrews said He must do? Is salvation complete? According to what is being taught in our churches today Jesus has not appeared a second time therefore delaying the complete process of salvation.

       Moving New Testament scripture out of first century context is causing all the misunderstanding of the Bible. Unless New Testament scripture is left in its proper place the Bible will never make sense to those who look at it and read it through 21st century eyes. As I go to different places today and fellowship with people of all different denominations. I find that more and more people are being set free from traditional teaching. People are coming to the realization that Jesus kept His word and did exactly what He said He would do; when He said He would do it and how He said He would do it.

        

Here is the shocker. The Bible was not written to you. This is why there is so much confusion is because most Christians try and apply everything in the Bible to them and it just won’t work.

 

         The New Testament scriptures was written to people who could speak and understand the language it was written in during that time or era. This included the people whom language that the apostles learned to speak on the Day of Pentecost(tongues). The apostles were endowed with the fluent speaking of foreign languages (speaking in tongues) as to preach the Gospel in languages that was familiar to others that was not of their nationality. This is one reason it is important to keep the scriptures in the first century context as they were written. Are we reading letters that belong to someone else? Yes, but that is okay. God intended for us to read their letters. When it comes to a Biblical Prophecy, the most important element to consider is context, context.

       Not so long ago a survey was taken to determine the percentage of Christians who understood the Bible. The survey revealed some astounding results. Of the number of Christians surveyed it was discovered that 90% of them did not understand the Bible. Included in that 90% were Pastors, Deacons, and numerous clergy persons. However; not understanding the scriptures is what brings about all the different denominations, creeds, sects and cults.

        It is very evident that those who do not understand the Bible are the most ignored. They are ignored because the majority of them are too embarrassed to admit to not understanding the book. Thousands of people across this great country of ours attend all types of church services each Sunday and come away with no understanding whatsoever. Most of our church leaders preach different doctrines that adds to the confusion of understanding. 1Cor:14:33: For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

         I think it is highly necessary that the church get together and reason to bring about one doctrine to aid in the understanding of the beauty that the book portrays. But the church leaders are to concerned about promoting their own agenda and programs that deters the less than avid student from getting the understanding and truth that he needs. This once again brings about confusion. Because nearly every program has there own interpretation even within the same denomination. Jms:3:16: For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

        Most interpretations are not scriptural. Scriptural interpretation is the Key to understanding the Bible. Let scripture interpret scripture. But we are finding more and more in our churches today preachers and teachers are having their own private interpretations. 2Pt:1:20: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

       Not so long ago. I was confronted by a person that was totally confused as to understanding the Bible. She told me that she had been to church after church and still could not understand the book. This is prevalent in church society today. Most cannot understand the Bible therefore they take the word of their pastors or bible school class teachers not knowing that the instructors themselves are also scriptural illiterate and are teaching based on what they heard somebody else say.

        The face is not to be harsh or critical nor is it meant to be unkind but to bring light to the situation. Ideally it would be great if we all took the time to get understanding. Prov:16:22: Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it: but the instruction of fools is folly. Until we can get together and reason; understanding will forever be lacking in our society. Most who don’t understand will not admit to not understanding and those who think they know are too fool headed to admit to not knowing: and there are those who will not admit to being wrong even when the truth is starring them in the face. We cannot forget about those who are sincerely wrong.

       These are those who honestly think they are right and are sincere about it but are willing for reproof. Most dastardly of those are the ones who know the truth but will not teach it because of tradition and trying to satisfy the majority. In our getting of understanding, let’s learn to stick with the scriptures.

       There is no greater Joy than being able to read and understand the scriptures for yourself. How can you know if someone is telling the truth if you can’t go to the scripture and find out for yourself? I for one do not want somebody to try to teach me something that cannot be found in the scriptures with proper scripture interpretation.

                        page of Greek papyrus

However; we still have Christians that do not know the original scriptures and letters were not written in the english language. Translations down through the centuries has taken away from the original Greek and Hebrew languages the inspired texts were written in. This is why context is so very important when it comes to interpretations.... Photo Credits www.lds.org .............. Caption Credits THE REDEEMER MAGAZINE

 

It has already been determined that the Bible is the greatest selling book of all times but it is the least read. No wonder it is the least read. Because it is the least understood. Until we learn how to study, the understanding will be long in coming. There is no use in telling someoneto study if they don’t know how.

There is great difference between reading and studying. A lot of times we read things that we don’t understand. However, understanding comes by studying.

I suggest all people that is of learned age; learn to interpret the scriptures for yourself. Stop relying on others to tell you what the scriptures means. It is easier to sell a lie than it is to give away the truth. Learn to know the truth. Jn:8:32: And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Before I learned to study the scriptures for myself I was in bondage to what others told me the scriptures meant. But when I did learn the proper way to study scripture not only did I find that I had been told wrong all those years; I also found out that tradition has nullified true Bible understanding. Yes, tradition instead of true doctrine is being taught in our churches.

The only way to remedy this situation is to learn to study the scriptures for yourself. No pulpit, no televangelist, nor uneducated clergy can mislead you once you learn for yourself. Below are a few tips that can help one on the road to scriptural self reliance.

  • Drop all preconceived ideas.(Notions you have been told without any scriptural validity.)
  • The most important tip is to keep the scriptures in context. Enough cannot be said about context especially keeping the New Testament in the 1st century context as to whom it was written to.
  • Here is the shocker. The Bible was not written to you. This is why there is so much confusion is because most Christians try and apply every thing in the Bible to them and it just won’t work.

“No one knows everything, but together we can know a lot.”

 

THE REDEEMER®- VOLUME 22 ****EDITION 2 - OMPS® INC. 2014
 All articles in this magazine are written in whole or part by Dr. Otis T. Williams Sr. Th.D.....© 2014  These articles are the literary properties of Otis Media Publications Syndication Inc.©

 Why the Bible Does Not Make Sense to Many Christians

Digital Version - End of Article