to Study by Topic]
An Age-Old Conflict
Bible has for centuries been a source of confusion to men everywhere.
Many people have concluded that it cannot be a reliable source
of information because so many contradictory theories claim
to be based upon its contents. The purpose of this section is
to show that the Bible, carefully studied, can be a consistent,
reliable source of information.
need an Authority
is in the nature of man to want a good authority for his thought
and his behavior. In religious thought, especially, it would
seem desirable to have sound evidence as a basis for conclusions.
Yet, today man faces a challenge in the field of religious thought:
Is there a religious authority? Or is every man to believe what
he believes with no more evidence than his own personal preference?
Actually, there is an authority. In practice, few men recognize
this section an effort will be made to demonstrate that the
Bible can answer reasonably and consistently any question
provided the student learn how to use it. This section will
endeavor to show that the Bible is, indeed, the ultimate authority
which men have been seeking.
is the Bible?
the idea is accepted that a personal God does exist, then the
student must next decide if he has access to knowledge relating
to God. The Bible claims within its covers to be the sole source
of information about God and about what He is doing.
section, therefore, is based on a very important assumption.
It is assumed from the beginning that the Bible is what it claims
to be the Word of God. Even if every student does not
also make this assumption, it is suggested that he temporarily
accept it as such while examining the Bible. If its contents
do not live up to its claim, he is not obligated to accept it
as anything more than another book. If its contents do reveal
the answers being sought, he has found what few have found:
initial hypothesis that the Bible is the Word of God is made
because there is great strength in studying any matter from
a positive rather than a negative point of view. Such a position
of study allows a person to see intricate beauties which another
person might quickly dismiss as contradictions.
has been for some time the practice of theological seminaries
to study the Bible utilizing various kinds of criticism (text,
form, etc.). This approach, however, has been negative. It has,
in essence, begun the study of Scripture by saying, "What
can we find wrong?" The method of study presented in this
section will be totally different from that which is commonly
being practiced, but it should give a positive confirmation
of the validity of this great Book, the Bible.
Separate Interlocking Approaches
Exhaustive Topical Examination
Study of Symbolic Language
Study by Time Frame
The Importance of Context
Study by Type and Antitype
mans mind is not capable of retaining and cross-referencing
all of the passages in the Scriptures, study which examines
one book of the Bible at a time is somewhat fruitless. How can
one be certain that conclusions are correct on any question
unless he has examined ALL that the whole Bible says relative
to that question? After all, if the Bible is the Word of God,
its testimony on a given subject should be consistent and revealing
from Genesis through Revelation.
order to know ALL that the Bible says on a given subject, therefore,
it becomes necessary to study a single TOPIC at a time. The
study of many topics, one at a time, then, can be carefully
molded into a larger, comprehensive picture of what the Bible
first of the five important methods of study, therefore, must
be the examination of one topic at a time.
to Study by Topic]