How to Properly Interpret the Bible

Do you want to know how to correctly interpret the Bible?  There are many helpful tips and suggestions on how to “rightly divide” God’s Word, but I’d like to point out one you may not have thought about before:

interpret the BibleYou have never found the full interpretation of any portion of scripture until you have found somewhere in it a reference to the Lord Jesus Christ. When you’ve found Jesus in the passage, you’ve found the deepest and greatest interpretation of that passage!

The last book of the Bible opens with the words, “The Revelation of Jesus Christ.”  This is not only the title of the last book of the Bible, but it may as well be taken as the title of all the books of the Bible – for the entirety of the Bible is the revelation, or unveiling, of Jesus Christ.

Jesus, Himself, made this claim In St. John 5:

“Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39)

 “For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. (John 5: 46)

Jesus Christ is the theme and subject of every part of Scripture. The interpreting the BibleLiving Word is enshrined in every section of the Written Word – in Genesis as much as Matthew. If we search long enough we shall find upon every page of scripture the outline of the central Person of the Book – the Lord Jesus Christ – who is both the object and end of all scripture.

If you search diligently, you will find Him standing somewhere in any segment of scripture. Sometimes in the background, sometimes clearly and unmistakably and sometimes faintly and dimly. But rest assured, He is there. Every Chapter, verse and line, in some way, points to the Savior!

In Genesis, He is the Word through which the worlds were framed, the coats of skins that covered Adam & Eve’s nakedness and both Isaac and the ram caught in the thicket on Mt. Moriah.

In Exodus, He is the Passover Lamb, the manna from heaven, the Tabernacle in the wilderness, the Rock that followed them in the desert, and the cloud and pillar of fire that led Israel on their journey.

In Leviticus, He is our High Priest.

In Numbers, He is the Brazen Serpent that was lifted up on a pole

In Deuteronomy, He is the City of Refuge where the condemned find safety.

In Joshua, He is the Captain of our Salvation.

We could go on and on through every chapter of every book and find Him. He is there! Because the Bible is the Revelation of Jesus Christ!

Do you know why there is such a relentless attack in our culture against the validity and infallibility of the Bible? It is more than an attempt to discredit the Written Word – it is an attempt to discredit the Incarnate Word – Jesus Christ! That’s why the devil, the world and our flesh hate the Word of God – because it is a revealing of Jesus Christ.

As you study, keep these suggestions in mind to help you better interpret the  Bible:

  1. Before you begin, pray that the Lord will reveal Himself to you in the passages you are about to study.
  2. Look for Him in the passage. The passage may make an obvious reference to Him or He may be veiled in typology or prophecy.
  3. Ask the question, “What do these Bible passages teach me about Jesus?”
  4. Look at the characters in the story. Could one or more be symbolic of Jesus and His ministry?
  5. How does the passage you’re studying Testify of Him? (John 5:39)

More than anything else that you find in your study of God’s Word, I pray, first and foremost, you find the Lord Jesus Christ!

~Matthew Ball

Please share a comment about where you have found Him in the scripture!

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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