Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2: 15
Have you ever opened someone else’s mail by mistake? If you have, as soon as you recognized it was not addressed to you, what did you do? Hopefully, you stopped reading it. Many times bible passages are taken out of context and even things are added to the scripture that are not in the Bible at all. We just heard someone else we respected say it, and took it at face value. The Apostle Paul was writing to Timothy, telling him to study the Word, not to prove anything to anyone else; but so that He accurately teach and explain it to others. The Key word is accurately or “rightly dividing” “truth”.
There are three things that should be considered when interpreting and understanding scripture. The first is to determine who is speaking. The second is to whom is it being spoken; and thirdly, in what context (situation or dispensation) were the statements made. This is the foundation of understanding any passage of scripture. However, at the end of the day, one final factor can bring about freedom or bondage from the same Bible…
Every passage of scripture should be viewed through the lens of the finished work of Jesus. There are many verses in the Bible that were meant for the Jews only, or were meant for the people of that particular dispensation, but in the light of the cross, are only reminders of what we have now obtained through Him, and in Him.
In essence, the Bible has to be sorted like mail. Everything in it is not relevant to the New Testament believer. For example, Deut. 22:5 states that the woman should not wear anything that pertains to a man (paraphrased). In times past we took that to mean that women shouldn’t wear pants. The reality is no one wore pants back then. Furthermore, in light of Jesus’ finished work , we are saved through out faith in Him and what He accomplished for us. That has nothing to do with one chooses to wear.
It is in Him we,live ,move and have our being. So His love for us and our revelation of what He as done is the catalyst that produces behavioral changes in our lives. We’ve been reading someone else’s mail.