40 Questions About Interpreting the Bible

In 40 Questions about Interpreting the Bible, New Testament Professor Dr. Robert L. Plummer tackles the major questions that people ask about reading and understanding the Bible. Questions include: Does the Bible contain error? Do all the commands of the Bible apply today? How do we interpret historical narrative?

Favorite Quotes

  1. The Bible itself is evidence of one of its main claims – that is, that the God who made the heavens, earth, and sea, and everything in them is a communicator who delights to reveal himself to wayward humans (18).
  2. Each word in the Bible is the word of a conscious human author and at the same time the exact word that God intends for the revelation of himself (32).
  3. Canonization is the process of recognizing that inherent authority, not bestowing it from an outside source (57).
  4. A proper understanding of the author’s original meaning is also fundamental for proper application of the text today (82).
  5. As you study the Bible more, you will have less need to consult commentaries or study aids for the answers to basic questions (102).
  6. In order to understand the Bible, one must read it (109).
  7. Whatever portion of the Bible one is studying, it is important to remember that the person and saving work of Jesus Christ is the ultimate focus of God’s revelation (151).
  8. If you are the only advocate of an interpretation, it is almost certainly wrong (179).
  9. Rather, we do such historical and exegetical study to understand the inspired author’s original message so that we might faithfully apply that message in analogous situations today (288).
  10. One of the greatest needs in the discussion of eschatology is humility (295).