Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Truth or Commentary

"They worship Me in vain, teaching as doctrines the commands of men.” 
(Matthew 15:9, HCSB)

Over the past several years, we have seen a shift in the approach to Bible study that dangerously leans toward a love for the doctrines of men over the Truth of Scripture.
As teachers of the Bible, we need to be careful to avoid reducing the teaching of the Truth to a study of commentaries. Here are some indicators that will help you evaluate your approach:
  • The content your group studies is a popular book or topic with the Bible relegated to a secondary reference.
  • You primarily explain a biblical text by quoting theological works or Christian authors instead of using your own disciplined study of the text.
  • You rely solely on simple discussion guides for teaching more than on your own personal study of the text.
  • The opinions of theologians is used more in a discussion than that of the biblical text.
  • You can't explain Scripture without quoting your favorite theologian or Christian leader.
  • Your research of Scripture begins with a commentary instead of the text.
It is your choice, Truth or Commentary. I choose truth, but this isn't an easy road. It requires much more time, energy, and discipline. Fortunately we have the Holy Spirit to guide us. Sure, I use sound theological ancillary resources to help me understand Scripture, but I refuse to elevate the writings of  men and women to equal level with the writings of God.

God, help us to learn how to study the Bible in a way that will help our group members learn more Truth than Commentary.