So, What Does It Really Mean?

People do not behave as we expect, both today, in America, and in the past, looking at Biblical populations. There is a disconnection between us and our understanding of the real people we see in the historic scriptures, and their beliefs, hopes, fears, motives, and understandings. It may be unintentional but I believe that it is unacceptable. I believe this disengagement creates problems that should not exist for our understanding of what God has said to both them and us through them.
Think about the people of God, all those who in all places and all times in the scriptures have embraced the Lord as their God and Savior. Think about how differently they understood the world around them and how God’s Word interpreted that world to them as well as how God wanted them to respond to it. Now think about yourself and those around you in you church. How do you and they see the biblical world and how do the scriptures interpret that world, helping to apply its lessons to the world you see around you?

Unless you want to be guilty of the same radical deconstructionism that Liberals use to slash and burn the absolutes that God has given us in His Word, you need to apprehend what God is saying in his Word in the context that he was saying it, to the people he said it to. Everything has a context. And during this highly charged political season we have plenty of examples of how taking things out of context distorts their meaning.

It is essential to understand the worldview of the author as well as those who were written to and couple that to the worldview inherent within the scriptures themselves. If you don’t make that effort to maintain the context of what scripture is saying, then you are isolating the Word from its framework and deconstructing it with the lens of your 21st century American (or European, Near Eastern, or Asian) chosen worldview, no matter how much you say that you are letting the Word speak for itself. Scripture always has to be understood in context and not just the context of the words themselves but the context of what the author was saying to the people to whom those words were addressed within the context that scripture has defined for itself, internally. To quote the angel in Revelation, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

Just a few Sunday thoughts from the rim…