The Science and Art of Biblical Interpretation
Welcome to this course on hermeneutics. It will be our goal as we study together The Science and Art of Biblical Interpretation. We call it a “science” because there are certain rules to learn and apply. We call it an “art” because our practice of these rules and principles will become part of the skill set we use and develop over time to become better students and communicators of God’s Word.
Our study will necessarily be limited in scope since, as in every area of Biblical study, there exists a massive amount of material and several different approaches are possible. Our focus, however, will be to draw out from Scripture itself the principles we will use to interpret the Scriptures.
The first step in understanding anything is to observe it. The Bible is a rich treasure house of truth and we must apply ourselves diligently to glean all that God has for us. We will never understand and apply what we do not see.
Historically the two competing interpretive systems were the allegorical and literal methods. The allegorical method won out and dominated for over a thousand years until the reformation. The Spirit of God then moved the reformers to recover sound doctrine through the recovery of sound, Biblical hermeneutics: the literal method.
Our motivation for seeking to understand the Word of God is that we may know, worship, and obey the God of the Word because all Scripture is God-breathed and profitable. 2 Timothy 3:16
Though not raised raised in a Christian home, Jeff came to faith in Christ as a young man and committed his life to the Lordship and service of his Savior. He was trained and employed in public health as a clinical microbiologist and later worked in the building industry. He met his wife Penny in college and they were married for 35 years. They were blessed with three children whom they raised in the fear and admonition of the Lord. Penny went home to her Savior in 2007 after a long, brave battle with cancer.
Jeff’s greatest joy is serving Christ’s church through the study and teaching of God’s Word. In view of the myriad fads and doctrinal aberrations plaguing the contemporary evangelical landscape, he is particularly concerned that local churches return to a high view of Scripture in order to be grounded in sound theology and practice.
Jeff enjoys family activities, cycling, woodworking and the four seasons and outdoor life of North Idaho. He is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary and a member of the Evangelical Theological Society.