When my husband and I speak to each other, even after 40+ years of marriage, we need a translator. We’re both speaking English, but we’re coming to the conversation out of very different ways of thinking. Not to mention background, male/female differences, likes and dislikes, family of origin, etc.
I think he means “this” when he was referring to “that.”
As a result, we both miss the point.
The same thing happens when we read the Bible. It was written and heard by people of a different culture, historical era, and a different world view than ours. We miss a lot because of these gaps between our ways of thinking. How can we come to a clearer understanding of God’s words in the Bible?
- Use Study Bibles that focus on cultural or archaeological background.
- Sign up for regular blogs from authors and Bible scholars who focus on history, context, geography, archaeology, culture, and more. Two of my favorites are Wayne Stiles and Ray Vander Laan.
- Look for Bible studies in which the author has done a lot of this research for you and makes relevant historical information available within the study. Click on the examples below: