7. Section B, Chapter 7 - Hermeneutics, the Science of Interpretation

To properly interpret any document what must be considered? What common errors occur when interpreting Scripture?

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  1. There are many things to consider when interpreting scripture. Some of the most basic are - we must interpret literally. It must be read as a normal writing without spiritualizing the content. We must read it in context, historical settings, word meanings, considering styles of writing - is it poetic, prophetic, a parable, a historic account, etc. We must interpret scripture with scripture not allowing our selves to get hung on minors or hard to understand passages knowing that our own perceptions, prejudice, viewpoints, methods, reasoning, etc can color our interpretation. We also must realize no one has all the answers and everyone has the right and ability to interpret the scriptures (as a believer). Being a believer is a key point here, as one cannot come or will have difficulty coming to proper interprtation without a personal faith in God and the enabling of the Holy Spirit. Some of the common errors are listed above. But nearly all errors occur when interpretation comes by using eisogesis. This involves allegorizing, not keeping it contextual, ignoring historical meanings and settings. Not considering syntax and word meanings. Allowing opersonal opinions and bias to influence, and considering literary forms or genre.