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Archive for August 5th, 2011

GO TO SESSION TEN

THE AID OF NATURAL REVELATION AS TOOLS IN HERMENEUTICS

I.                    Natural Revelation

a.       Besides special revelation (Scripture), there are other ways God revealed himself. For example:

i.      Nature

ii.      History

iii.      Biblical Languages

iv.      Archaeology

b.      These things in their own ways, affirm the truthfulness of Christianity when it is properly used.

This should not be a surprise, as God created them for His glory.

II.                 The Limit of natural revelation as hermeneutical tools

a.       The Bible, and not natural revelation is the ultimate authority[1]

i.      Natural revelation by nature needs to be interpreted.

ii.      Experiences with natural revelation need Special Revelation to properly interpret it, not vice versa.

1.      This can be something Scripture explicitly states.

2.      Or it can be the broad principles and Biblical categories applied to one’s worldview lens.

b.      Thus, if natural revelation seemingly contradict Scripture, Scripture could not be rejected

i.      Again, Scripture is one’s ultimate authority.

ii.      Sometimes the information of natural revelation is incomplete

In contrast to the complete totality of Scripture

III.               The usefulness of Natural revelation as Hermeneutical Tools

a.       Natural revelation could provide deeper insight into the Text of Scripture

Each areas of natural revelation has a unique aspect and value in hermeneutics

b.      Biblical Languages

i.      Knowing the Biblical languages allows one to be closer to the Original text.

ii.      There are times when aspects of passages that are translated get lost in translation.

iii.      It help clarify the grammar of the original language.

This is important because it is a tool for the grammatical aspect in the Historical-Grammatical Hermeneutic.

c.       History

 i.      History can provide social and cultural details and make sense of the practices of Biblical times.

ii.      It can fill in more information where the Scripture did not have as much details.

iii.      It is especially useful in studies of the meaning of the original words of Scripture during Biblical times.

This is important because it is a tool for the historical aspect in the Historical-Grammatical Hermeneutic.

d.      Archaeology

i.      This helps provide readers of the Scriptures with more historical details.

ii.      It can also assist in areas such as geographical and topological understanding of the context of Biblical events.

IV.              Final Warning

a.       Be cautious that nothing ever takes the place of Biblical Authority

b.      Scripture (in its context) should be the ultimate appeal when one wants to accept or reject an interpretation, not things from General revelation.


[1] See Session Four for the discussion about Biblical Authority.

GO TO SESSION TWELVE

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