Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Reading the Bible with Church History


As we read and study the Bible, it is important to have a good grounding in Church history, because it will help us realize that there is not a straight line from the way we read Scripture and understand Christian theology today back to how the apostles originally taught and understood it in the early church. There have been a multitude of twists and turns along the way.

When we do not know anything of the history of the Church or the historical development of Christian theology, it becomes very easy for us to think that we are merely reading Scripture for ourselves, because we are unaware of how much our own reading and theology has been conditioned, influenced and shaped by century upon century of hermeneutical and theological developments.

The more we understand the history of the church and of theology, the less we will be susceptible to reading Scripture in a simplistic way (that is, a way that is overly simple and reductionist).