Poor Biblical Interpretation And How It Affects One’s Understanding Of The Message In The bible
The Bible is a collection of books that is loved and read by many people today, especially Christians. The term “Bible” is derived from the Greek words. It took shape over a period of about 1000 years- from about 900 B.C. to 150 A.D. The books contained in it were written by different authors, mostly Hebrews. In simple terms, the Bible can be said to be God’s word in human language. God inspired the human authors of the Bible to write His word and they used their language in writing.
The Bible may then be seen as a literary piece cause the text in it constitute a body of works written in different languages and cultures and the authors used the various methods of writing common at their time. In order to understand and appreciate the message of the text, there is the need for interpretation..
Leaders of churches as well , are making infant to understand the messages
Many people today, especially leaders of churches as well as the faithful, are making the understand the message. It is a good sign for people to make the attempt to understand the message in the Bible. However, interpretation of Sacred Text by many people today is sometimes or most often poorly done. Poor interpretation of the Bible has affected and distorted the message it conveys. It has effected people’s understanding of the word of God. Poor biblical interpretation is caused by several factors and this article will seek to discuss some of these factors.
The first is the fact that some people read their own meaning into the text other than the authors of the biblical text had a message to convey. It is this message that they have expressed by using their own language. It should be the concern of the readers to look out for the author’s intended meaning other than attributing their personal meaning to the text. If every reader assigns his own meaning to the text, we may miss the message of the Bible.
Readers consider most parts of Bible to be literal
Another factor which contributes to poor biblical interpretation is that some readers, of the scripture consider most or all parts of Bible to be literal. They adhere strictly and concisely to the basic meaning of the word or text. It is true that some parts of Bible are literal but not the whole text of it is literal. The human authors who wrote the Bible used their language and style of writing. Every language has literary features and style of writing.
However, The text of the Bible is found to contain various literary devices. We have literary devices such as anthropomorphism, personification, metaphor, simile and hyperbole. knowing these devices and how they are used in scripture will aid one in making a good biblical interpretation. For example, anthropomorphism is the attribution of a human form, human characteristics, or human behavior to nonhuman things, e.g deities in mythology and animals in children’s stories. An example is in Genesis 3:8 “The man and wife heard the sound of Yahweh God walking in garden in the cool of the day.. “Here, God is said to have been been walking as do human beings.
Conclusion of literary genres in Bible
In addition to these literary features, there are also various literary genres in Bible, Some parts may be history, gospel, prophetic, a letter, poetic or apocalyptic. Discernment of genre, that is, the type or category of the piece of literature is an essential part of the process of communication between author and readers.
It provides a literary frame of reference within which the readers do not consider the genre and some may not even know the genre of the text they are interpreting. They may not know whether the text they are reading is poetic, prophetic, apocalyptic literature is characterized by features such as numerology, animal and color symbolism. One must know how these features are used in apocalyptic texts and apply them when interpreting such texts.