1 Corinthians 10:32
“Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God.”
Welcome to “Rightly Dividing The Word Of God.” In this 16-Part study, we will be employing both a macro and a micro view of the Bible. Both types of study are important in their own rite to one’s overall understanding of scripture. Together, they give you a much clearer view of God’s word. You can also see where we are son God’s prophetic timeline!
Let’s begin by discussing some general principles.
Three Groups Of People.
In all His dealings with man down through history, in the present and into the future, God is working or dealing with one of these three groups: The Jews, the Gentiles, or the Church, as shown by the opening scripture. This is very important to understanding the proper context of whatever you are studying or reading. This is absolutely essential to rightly dividing. The downside of not understanding how to rightly divide is misunderstanding and misapplying scripture. This leads to believing things about God that are frankly not true.
Two of the above groups of people are unsaved: Jews and non-Jews, or Gentiles. Jewish people are natural descendants of Abraham who have rejected their Messiah. Gentiles are their non-Jewish counterpart. The Church is made up of people from both groups who have accepted Jesus as their Messiah. As a result, they are now neither Jew nor Gentile but an entirely new creation: SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF GOD!
What does it mean to “Rightly Divide” the word of God? I used to think it meant simply to accurately understand what you’re reading. While that is certainly included, there is a bit more to it than that. What Paul meant by “Rightly dividing” is to “Rightly divide the covenants.” You see, the Holy Spirit has actually divided the Word of God into sections by various covenants and dispensations.
These agreements, or covenants, were entered into by God with whatever group of people He was working or dealing at given time. For instance, today we are under the New Covenant. The curses that affected those who were under Mosaic Law no longer apply, unless you choose to operate under that system. We’ll be covering that issue in more detail later on.
Importance Of Context.
The next important concept to understand is, “Context.” IT IS THE MOST CRITICAL ASPECT of Bible study to understand. As they say, “CONTEXT IS KING.” I am often amazed at pastors, even theologians, who don’t seem to understand how to determine the proper context of a particular passage.
The sad thing is, when someone ignores or is unaware of the importance of rightly dividing and context, congregations are unwittingly and needlessly placed under bondage by misunderstood and misapplied scripture. The unintended consequence is that believers are hamstrung, so to speak. It actually “Helps” them to live UNholy lives, the exact opposite of their pastor’s intention.
Perhaps this account of what happened in ancient Israel might help:
When God’s people finally entered the Promised land, it was inhabited by Giants. These giant people, however, were not fully human. They were the product of perverse sexual unions between human women and demons who took on human form. This diabolical phenomenon happened both before and after the great flood of Noah’s day. Before the flood they were called, “Nephilim;” afterward: “Anakim and Rephaim.”
During their dispensation, it was quite appropriate for Israel to pray that they have good success in killing every man, woman, and child. God wanted to rid the world of such aberrations. If they were allowed to live and procreate, mankind would ultimately cease to exist. We don’t pray that kind of prayer today because there are no such creatures. But it was certainly appropriate in Joshua’s day. Under the dispensation of Grace, since Jesus shed His blood, we pray based on what is on God’s heart now: That none would perish, but all should come to repentance.
The Purpose Of Hybrids.
Why did these demon/human hybrids exist at all? Because both before and after the flood, one of the devil’s wicked plans had been to pollute the human race in an attempt to prevent the virgin birth. If he had succeeded, the human race would have ceased to exist and JSU’s could not have been born. God stopped this heinous plan both by the flood which quite effectively destroyed all those evil creatures.
But God promised Noah He would never again flood the whole earth, so the devil thought he’d try his little trick again. That’s why God raised Israel: To destroy the devil’s latest attempt to pollute humanity so our race would be preserved, free of fallen angelic DNA.
The Difference Between “TO” And “FOR.”
Here is another critical skill to cultivate when you are trying to determine the proper context of a particular passage. It’s important to understand TO WHOM or FORWHOM a particular passage written TO or FOR. Don’t be like some Christians and put yourself everywhere, thinking that the entire Bible is written or applies TO you. The curses of Deuteronomy absolutely DO NOT apply to the Church, for example. Remember the phrase, “No condemnation?” That means “NO MORE CURSE.” They no longer apply TO you, meaning if you break the law, you will not be subject to any curse.
Some parts of the Bible are written TO Jewish people, both saved and unsaved. Other portions are addressing the Gentiles (unsaved non-Jews) and some are written TO the non-Jewish Church. Should we even bother reading those parts of scripture that aren’t written yo us? Of course! There are lessons to be learned and benefits to be gained from all of scripture. Just like the study of history from which we can learn valuable lessons, so too we learn from the portions of Holy Writ that are addressed to others. If this sounds a bit confusing, don’t worry: We’ll be covering more on those topics later on in this series.
Many sincere, well-meaning pastors and theologians miss it right here because they do not know how to rightly divide the word. They mix up the covenants. This is the #1 factor that has lead to MISunderstandings, MISinterpretations, MISapplication and wrong doctrines. Inevitably, it has the effect of bringing believers back under bondage to the law.
WE DON’T NEED ANY OF THAT!
So, with all those principles in mind, let’s begin with a panoramic overview of the Bible in Part 2 of “Rightly Dividing The Word Of God.” You may follow the link below to continue:
16 thoughts on “Introduction to Rightly Dividing The Word Of God: Part 1 of 16.”
True we need know how to righthly deviding in a proper application in our present time.
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