Bible Scriptures - To whom addressed?

I would think that most know that the books of the Bible, for example the Pauline epistles, are addressed to specific groups pf people or individuals .... cp.:

1Thess 1:1 (AV)

 Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians [which is] in God the Father and [in] the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace [be] unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Or this one:

Röm 1:1,7 (AV)   

1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called [to be] an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

...

To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called [to be] saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

or this one:

1Tim 1:1-2  (AV)

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, [which is] our hope;

Unto Timothy, [my] own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, [and] peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

However, despite such clear textual evidence, Christians of all kinds of Christian denominational backgrounds often claim that the Scriptures are addressed to them today ... can such be correct? Or doe such an idea or belief cause false understandings and false interpretations?

I would think that there must be a clear distinction made between "understanding/interpretation" and "application" .... what are others' thoughts and considerations regarding this matter?

Comments

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 630

    This is a very good question to ask and one I think every Bible reader should take to heart.

    @Wolfgang However, despite such clear textual evidence, Christians of all kinds of Christian denominational backgrounds often claim that the Scriptures are addressed to them today

    I agree, with you 100% and the above as well has been something that I have noticed. I think a lot of people are inconsistent when it comes to their hermetic. Take for example 2 Corinthians 13:12 most Christians outside of far east European countries (eastern Churches), tend to either ignore the verse, or claim it means a holy hand shake today, but then they will turn around and claim that the great commission applies to everyone rather than to just the disciples Jesus was talking to. Is it good if people can follow the great commission of course, but not everyone has to travel around the world as a missionary.

    @Wolfgang I would think that there must be a clear distinction made between "understanding/interpretation" and "application" .... what are others' thoughts and considerations regarding this matter

    I agree! and this one reason I am little sceptical of the proof texting and randomly quoting a lists half verses out of context that some preachers and so called bible students do. They seem to assume that all the verses and the interpertations them are totaly clean and will natural lead to their particular interpertation that believe the verses are clearly saying.

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 2,745
    edited September 28

    @Mitchell ... Take for example 2 Corinthians 13:12 most Christians outside of far east European countries (eastern Churches), tend to either ignore the verse, or claim it means a holy hand shake today,

    Well, my first question to be answered regarding this statement "Greet one another with a holy kiss." would be, What did that mean in that day, what was Paul actually saying? Was kissing a common way of greeting? Why "holy kiss" ... were there at the time other kisses used in greeting (such as what Judas was doing to Jesus as part of his betrayal?

    If one does not understand the meaning of the statement in its original setting, one should most likely refrain completely from guessing how that passage might apply now in our day and culture and then turn such guesswork into doctrine and practice.

    @Mitchell ... but then they will turn around and claim that the great commission applies to everyone rather than to just the disciples Jesus was talking to. Is it good if people can follow the great commission of course, but not everyone has to travel around the world as a missionary.

    See above ... on what textual grounds do such folks base their application for today? Is it based on correct understanding of what the text actually states, such as textual evidence of who spoke to whom and when? which nations at the time were in view with "all nations"? are there examples in other later books of the Bible where this command was carried out? How was it carried out and by whom? etc etc.

    I would contend that a correct understanding/interpretation always precedes a correct and proper application today.

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 2,745

    Another scripture to which I was referred recently involved the record in John 14. The person used it as his proof-text to tell me that Christians today need not pastosr, teacher or preachers to teach them and help them understand the Bible.

    John 14:26 (AV)

    But the Comforter, [which is] the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

    "See ....since the Holy Ghost came, it is the Holy Ghost Who now teaches Christians ALL things. And I need nobody to remind me about the Bible, because the Holy Ghost reminds me if I should forget something in God's Word / the Bible."

    Hmn, hmn .... what would you think or say when comes to you in such manner and with such straight forward Bible??

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 2,745

    What about the following verses of Scripture in which we read about "as you have been taught" ?? Are those who change church denominations living in sin because they sometimes forsake previously held dogmas and adhere to different new dogmas?

    Col 2:7 (AV)

    Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.

    2Thes 2:15 (AV)   

    Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.

    How are these passages to be understood correctly in light of when, by whom and to whom they were written? What about their validity for their application to Christians today?

Sign In or Register to comment.