Preaching - Lesson 3

Text Selection & Interpretation

In this lesson, you learn about the importance of text selection and interpretation in preaching. It covers the role of the Holy Spirit, addressing congregational needs, and the preacher's passion in selecting the right text. The lesson also delves into textual analysis, including literary context, historical and cultural background, theological insights, and applying the text to a modern audience. Moreover, you gain insight into effective preaching techniques and strategies, such as structuring your sermon, using illustrations, balancing exegesis and application, and preaching with clarity and relevance.

Bryan Chapell
Lesson 3
Watching Now
Text Selection & Interpretation

I. Foundations of Text Selection

A. The Role of the Holy Spirit

B. Congregational Needs and Context

C. Preacher's Passion and Conviction

II. Textual Analysis and Interpretation

A. Literary Context

B. Historical and Cultural Background

C. Theological Insights

D. Application to Modern Audience

III. Preaching Techniques and Strategies

A. Sermon Structure and Flow

B. Illustrations and Examples

C. Balancing Exegesis and Application

D. Preaching with Clarity and Relevance

  • Gain insights into effective preaching principles, covering history, essential components, styles, and techniques, and learn how to prepare and deliver impactful sermons.
  • Gain valuable insights on sermon construction, learn techniques for effective preaching, and understand the importance of continuous improvement for delivering impactful messages.
  • Through this lesson, you gain valuable insights into the process of text selection and interpretation for preaching, as well as learning practical techniques for delivering engaging and relevant sermons.
  • In this lesson, you gain insight into the process of creating a sermon, from text selection to delivery, emphasizing textual analysis and message relevance.
  • Through this lesson, you gain the skills to craft clear, engaging, and memorable sermons by mastering the principles of effective outlining and arrangement in preaching.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to craft effective propositions and main points, enhancing your preaching clarity and impact.
  • By exploring homiletical outlines, you'll learn to effectively develop and structure sermons, understand various outline types, and apply engaging presentation techniques for impactful preaching.
  • In this lesson, you gain insights into crafting engaging introductions for sermons, exploring their importance, characteristics, types, and the process of creating a compelling introduction that effectively connects to the message.
  • Through this lesson, you learn the importance of exposition in preaching, how to develop an expository sermon, and the role of the preacher for effective communication.
  • This lesson teaches you to create captivating sermon introductions using anecdotes, questions, and facts, guiding you through research, structuring, and presentation to maximize audience engagement and improve your overall sermon impact.
  • In order to understand the basic subdivisions of your sermon in expository development, it is important to it is helpful to see what the specific members of your sermon's body looks like in standard development.

  • By completing this lesson, you learn to effectively prepare and deliver sermons while focusing on personal growth, continuous improvement, and dependence on God.
  • Learn to effectively classify and develop sermons into topical, textual, and expository types, enhancing your preaching skills and audience connection.
  • In this lesson, you learn the significance of explanation in preaching and strategies to craft and deliver effective explanatory sermons while evaluating their effectiveness for continuous improvement.
  • By incorporating illustrations into your preaching, you engage listeners, clarify complex ideas, and enhance memory retention while learning effective guidelines to utilize various types of illustrations.
  • Explore this lesson to learn how to effectively use illustrations in sermons by isolating events or experiences, refining principles, and connecting with your audience through human interest accounts.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to effectively use illustrations in preaching to engage listeners, clarify concepts, and draw from various sources, while maintaining relevance, variety, and ethical considerations.
  • Gain insight into the importance of application in preaching, as well as principles and methods for effective application, to create impactful and relevant sermons that resonate with your audience.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to effectively apply biblical teachings to modern life, considering various approaches, overcoming challenges, and utilizing practical tips for context-sensitive and culturally aware application.
  • Through this lesson, you gain insights into crafting effective transitions in preaching and utilizing the dialogical method for increased audience engagement and message clarity.
  • Gain insight into various sermon presentation methods, their advantages and disadvantages, and learn to choose the right method and improve your preaching skills.
  • Through this lesson, you enhance your preaching skills by mastering vocal techniques and purposeful gestures, ensuring a connection with the audience while continually improving your delivery.
  • Learn the significance of dress and style in preaching and how to balance authenticity, appropriateness, and clarity to effectively communicate your message to your audience.
  • You learn to effectively repurpose old sermons, gaining insight into updating them for relevance, enhancing delivery, and managing time efficiently.
  • By studying this lesson, you gain insight into the crucial connection between the Word and Spirit in preaching and learn to balance them for effective and authentic sermons.
  • Through this lesson, you learn how to apply a Christ-centered, redemptive-historical approach to preaching, addressing common criticisms and enhancing your sermons.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to compose powerful redemptive messages that highlight Christ's work and connect biblical themes to modern audiences.
  • Through this lesson, you gain an understanding of redemptive principles in preaching, learning to identify them in Scripture and effectively apply them to your sermons while navigating potential challenges.
  • By exploring the importance of genre in biblical interpretation and applying redemptive interpretation to various biblical genres, you will gain knowledge and insight into the historical and literary context, redemptive themes and patterns, and contemporary application of different types of genres in the Bible.


Dr. Bryan Chapell explores the unifying principle of grace that binds all Scripture together. He outlines and demonstrates the principles and practice of sermon-crafting and delivery to illuminate the message of grace in each passage, and to submit it to God's Spirit for the transformation of lives through preaching.

Dr. Chapell is making these recorded lectures available for you to access at no charge on BiblicalTraining.org. However, there is no personal interaction with Dr. Chapell in this format. The assignments and activities described are for classes that he teaches in person. We left the descriptions in for your benefit, but we do not offer personal or group interaction to participate in these activities. You can, however, sign up for his new preaching classes at BryanChapell.com/courses.

Dr. Chapell is helped in this course by Zachary W. Eswine, Assistant Professor of Homiletics and Director of the Doctor of Ministry Program (BSW, Ball State University; MDiv, Covenant Theological Seminary; PhD, Regent University). Dr. Eswine served as senior pastor of Grace Church of the Western Reserve in Hudson, Ohio, for six years before joining Covenant Seminary's faculty in 2001. He has served as a campus minister with the Navigators, as a church youth director, and as a chaplain-evangelist in retirement facilities. Since arriving at the Seminary, Dr. Eswine has also served as interim pastor for Tates Creek Presbyterian Church in Lexington, Kentucky, as advisory pastor for the Chinese Gospel Church of St. Louis, and as interim pastor for Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church in St. Louis. He has taught New Testament in Ukraine and served as a short-term missionary in the Caribbean. Dr. Eswine is a gifted preacher and has authored the book Kindled Fire: How the Methods of C. H. Spurgeon Can Help Your Preaching and numerous articles on homiletics. In addition, as an accomplished musician and songwriter, he has recorded three collections of original songs.

Philosophy and Goals of the Course

1. "Prep and Del" is an introduction to the basics of sermon construction and delivery. This is not primarily a course on the theology of preaching, but rather is a practical introduction to the tools, structures, and concepts that help preachers learn to put a sermon together. 

2. Because this course is introductory, certain standards of sermon construction are taught that I hope you will consider "foundational" rather than universal. There is not only one "right way" to preach. However, mastering the methods of this course will help you develop the tools needed for many kinds of future sermons. Students from many backgrounds and preaching traditions have found these tools helpful even as they prepare for other styles in the future. Other methods and styles will be taught and encouraged in future semesters.

3. In Dr. Chapell's seminary class, you would be asked to present some short oral assignments to the class in order to: a) begin integrating the information presented in lectures; b) begin honing your preaching skills; c) and, remove some of the intimidation of your first preaching experience next semester.

(At this time, we do not provide personal interaction to evaluate your progress. We included the suggested assignments and activities to give you direction as you apply the principles you are learning to your own sermon preparation and delivery.)

Recommended Books

Christ-Centered Preaching (text only) 2nd(Second) edition by B. Chapell

Christ-Centered Preaching (text only) 2nd(Second) edition by B. Chapell

Christ-Centered Preaching: Redeeming the Expository Sermon [Hardcover]Bryan Chapell (Author)

Christ-Centered Preaching (text only) 2nd(Second) edition by B. Chapell
Christ-Centered Sermons: Models of Redemptive Preaching

Christ-Centered Sermons: Models of Redemptive Preaching

Highly regarded preacher and teacher Bryan Chapell shows readers how he has prepared expository sermons according to the principles he developed in his bestselling...

Christ-Centered Sermons: Models of Redemptive Preaching

Dr. Bryan Chapell
Text Selection & Interpretation
Lesson Transcript

[00:00:00] This recording is provided courtesy of Covenant Theological Seminary. Our beginning today. Let me just do your mid-term review questions. How many things is a sermon about one thing? Great. What is the one thing that a sermon is about? And that's a subject and it's compliments. Remember that language? A subject and it's compliments. What's the big idea of a sermon? Main idea of a passage applied to an FCA. Main idea of a passage applied to an FCF. Somebody was asking me just before we began, Is there only one possible FCF of a given passage? No, they're you know, the fkf is the way that we identify and speak about the burden of a passage. But there may be many ways of wording it and there may be many, as it were, subsets within the major idea. So it's a main idea of a passage applied to an. Rather than the FCF. How does one develop NFC if. Well. You're identifying the burden of a sermon. You know what? I really want you to get out of that question are all FCF sins. No, they are not. That's what I want you to kind of take away when you develop it, to recognize it may be the burden of the text that is a sin, a wrong that's being corrected. Or it may be an aspect of our fallen condition, like grief or uncertainty. That's not a sin. But still, as part of our fallen condition that God is addressing. So it's identifying the burden of the message. And it may be a sin, perhaps not. What are indications that a message is pre sermon? That it's pre sermon? Again, lots of ways you could say this out of the lecture previously, but my main idea is this it's truth without application.

[00:01:53] It's just information. Remember? Information without application yields frustration. We are not ministers of information alone. We are ministers of transformation. So a message is pre sermon if it's true. Without application. You have an assignment that will be due next time. So let me just kind of put my thermometer and see how you're doing. You're going to, on one page, identify in three categories how a couple of preachers in chapel have presented to you or portrayed you logos, pathos, ethos. Now, at this point, I'm hoping they're all on the portal. If you weren't able to go to one, can somebody nod and tell me if that's okay? You're nodding. So that's that's accurate now. So that's great. So they're available to you. Let's just talk about some things that may help you when you're looking at somebody. How are they portraying logos to you? And again, what is logos? Verbal content. It includes the logic. Right. It's not just the words themselves, but the meaning of the word being presented in a logical form. How is logos being communicated to you by preacher? What things do preachers do that communicate logos? They outline the points themselves are an organizational scheme. That's one way. So organization is one dimension of logos. Just does it make logical sense? Other aspects of logos. Excuse me again. Let me think is body language logos. Surely if the manner contradicts the message will hear the manner as the message. So that makes sense. So certainly body language has something to do with communicating content. Now, that's a good that's a good insight because that's that saying verbal content is not just the words coming out of the mouth, it's the way they're being expressed is part of the verbal content. Now, that's, by the way, just a good insight as you're thinking about.

[00:03:51] Well, logos is it's not just what is said, but how it's said. That's part of the verbal content. Now, how it's said, what do we usually think of that most applying to, if not logos? What? Pathos, how it said. But, you know, these are not just kind of ironclad categories, are they? In fact, we'll begin to see more and more how much they blend. Okay. So logos, you know, it can be the word said. You know, it's going to be even things like, can I hear what said the organization, How am I getting the verbal content? How is pathos communicated to you? We've already said body language may be something. What are other ways that pathos is communicated to you? The emotions. How do we communicate emotions to one another? Gestures. Tone of voice, facial expression. What's a speech communicators call facial animation? And that a strange notion. Facial is the face. You know, when we are particularly men in the society, our faces tend to freeze, you know? And I say, I'm really happy about this, you know, instead of, you know, the best way to get facial animation is actually to smile, you know, to plan the smile and the face starts moving. And yet when we're very serious, we often get just very flat faced. And so facial animation, so tone of voice gesture again, manner reflecting message, manner being consistent with the message. Now, how do we present and how do the people you're listening to communicate ethos to you? This is the tough one, and yet the most important one. How does creatures communicate ethos their perceived character? Okay. Do they talk about personal experiences ethos as two components credibility and compassion and resiliency. It also is made of credibility and compassion.

[00:05:47] So if I speak of personal experience, tell me what that does in terms of credibility or compassion, Robert. The credibility of I know what you're living through. That's part of ethos. What about compassion? This personal experience? Can it relate? Compassion? It depends on how, if my personal experience is making fun of other people, it's not going to really compassion. But if it's showing empathy, sympathy, concern for others. So personal experience may be part of ethos. What else goes into communicating ethos? Transparency and we'll talk a little bit later about redemptive transparency and not just feel sorry for me, but I know what you're going through and God has provided a help. What else helps with credibility and compassion? What communicates credibility? Tea parties. Thank you. The way he lives. That's not even what happens in the pocket, is it? Ethos can be largely your impression. Is knowing people outside the pulpit or what they bring into the sermon that relates to what's outside the pulpit? That's why we have to think that preaching is not just words. It is life presenting words. Truth poured through Personality is Philips Brooks famous statement. So it's your awareness or somehow what is projected even from the life of the person as well as what he's saying at the time. Tell me what else communicates credibility. I just don't want you to forget logos. How does organization what does organization do for credibility? Bingo. If someone is not organized, they are not credible. They do not appear to know what they're talking about. Or worse. They do not appear to care that you can get it. That makes sense. They don't seem to care about their listeners if they're not organized. That surprises people usually. I think an organization is just kind of being a logical thing I have to go through.

[00:07:48] It is actually one of the primary means by which we communicate. Care for the listeners is being organized. Yes. Okay. Now we're really tying the categories together. So intellectual integrity is going to be part of logos. Does the argument hold water, etc. But it's also part of ethos. Is this logical? Is it really embracing what you know would be questions a listener would have? Or you ignoring the questions? Are you ignoring the big issues? Speaking about what you want to know and ignoring what everyone knows are the elephants in the room? The hard questions. So have you really engaged with intellectual integrity? What people know is going on? Now, I'm not going to keep going down the path, but I want to just kind of get you ready because you've seen two things happen. I hope the categories begin to implode. Right? They begin to blend. Each kind of depends on the other. Pathos is part of logos. Logos is part of pathos, Logos is part of the ethos. Ethos is part of logos. So you see the categories begin to blend. And the second thing you recognize is even as you're evaluating sample speakers, you're not evaluating only what happens in the pulpit. Ethos takes you to a wider world. And because ethos is connected to all those other things, it becomes the reason why I'll be a great preacher if they just give me 40 hours a week in the office to develop these great masterpiece sermons and say, Actually, it won't be a very good preaching ministry, because if it's not life on life, the words don't mean much. Okay, But sir, let's pray and we'll go into today's lecture. Father, you beautifully unfold your word and our task in so many ways, reminding us that how we live is part of what we say.

[00:09:35] And yet reminding us at the same time that your spirit has given us what to say so that we are not dependent on our authority or our thoughts. And yet, Father, we know we must have this because our thoughts are sometimes at great challenge. We recognize for our nation right now, there is a major storm bearing down upon the southern states and we struggle in thought with this. At one point we recognize it is evidence of your power and sovereignty. At the same time, we recognize that people will be hurt. And we have trouble reconciling this to our understanding of you. At one level, we can logically talk about it being a fallen world with the consequences of sin ravaging in so many ways. But ultimately we will still at times struggle to make sense of how it goes on and what its purpose could be. Your ways are beyond ours. And, Father, if we only relied upon our logic or the interpretation of our circumstances, we would be at a loss. But you have shown us something else beyond our circumstances. You have shown us your character through the work of Jesus Christ. We have seen a love that is undeniable and is eternal and is working its purposes out in ways that we in the moment might say looked wrong. Father by. So displaying your care to us even again this day. Would you hold our hearts close to your end? That not only would we be assured of all that you are doing for our good, but that we may be able to help others too. Grant has a great vision of your son that we might be adequate heralds of the mercy that is in him. We asked for your blessing even as we prepare this day.

[00:11:24] In Jesus name, Amen. Today we are going to be talking about learning some basic tools and rules for both selecting and interpreting text. If we're going to preach from the Bible, ultimately we have to select some texts and then interpret them. Now, here's a particular text that was interpreted and G. Campbell Morgan, one of the great preachers of the last century, didn't preach the sermon, but he talked about once hearing it. It was a sermon based on the second Samuel 913. Here is the text. So my chef dwelt in Jerusalem for he did eat continually at the King's table. And he was lame in both feet. The text about Mr. Bush has taken an to David's table, even though the chef was laying, the preacher began the sermon this way. My brethren, we see here tonight first the doctrine of human depravity. My father, chef, was lame. Second, we see the doctrine of total depravity. He was lame in both feet. You're supposed to chuckle at this point. Third, we see the doctrine of justification for he dropped in Jerusalem. Fourth, we see the doctrine of adoption because he ate at the King's Table. And fifthly, we see the doctrine of the perseverance of the states because the aid at the King's table continually. Is that what that text means? Now, you must say somewhere in the Bible those things are said. But it's classic. I saw Jesus importing upon the text What the text does not mean. Now, somewhere the Bible may say such things, but it is not what this text says. And the goal of expository preaching is to say what God says, to interpret the text correctly. To do that, we need to have certain tools available to us. And I want to talk to you at first about some basic tools for Bible study.

[00:13:42] Now, for some of you, this is old hat. You know all this. That's okay. Just bear with me. Others of you, it will be some new things. If you were to say and I have about eight of these. What are some basic tools for Bible study? The basic tool that I would encourage you to have in your library available to you as you prepare studies is a good study Bible. A good study Bible. A study Bible is one that does not merely have the text of the Scriptures. But at the beginning, the chapters and in footnotes and textual commentary and indices and maps and all kinds of things that go in the study Bible. There is much information about the text. If you open to the book of Philip II, it will tell you it was written by Paul. It will tell you the year it was written. I will tell you where Paul is when he writes, which is away from Philip II. He will tell you who the Philippians are, what their town was like, what they're struggling with, what's going on in the church, how people. Now, what I'm just doing is I'm not going to a bunch of commentaries yet. This is basic information that will be in virtually any good study Bible. Now, the one I've got here is the Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible, which has most of the notes and commentary put together by reformed and evangelical scholars. And it's attached to the text of the NIV, the new international version. And a lot of you will be using the new international version or your churches do. The new Geneva Bible originally had these notes, the new Geneva study Bible. Anybody know what translation the new Geneva had? What was it? It was the new King James.

[00:15:14] So actually, the notes for the new Reformation Study Bible were originally designed for the NIV, but then the Zondervan at that point did not release the copy right for the use of those notes with the Nivi. So they were attached to the new King James. But then some years later, people got together and they said, you know, we still have these notes for the Navy. And then they were attached. At that point, rights were obtained and they were attached. So the study notes, while there are some editorial differences, the study notes for both the new King James and the NIV study Bibles are pretty much the same. And that's that's very helpful. What are other commonly used study Bibles? The Navy. Somebody said the Navy study Bible has its own Susanna and has its own study Bible. This is kind of where you get your biggest bang for the buck. Okay. If you're saying I just I just have so much money to spend, getting a study Bible gives you lots of information at your fingertips, right, with the text. And when you're kind of saying, am I really off base here and where I'm going? Usually the notes at the bottom of the page will give you a lot of information of whether you're just off base in your initial interpretation. They're not exhaustive. They're not like an extensive commentary, but they give you good hints and a good sketch of most of the information that will be background that you need for almost any text robbery study bible, much used in this country. What is the theological perspective? The primary study Bible is dispensation. So evangelical Bible believing, but just sensational. HarperCollins study Bible much used in this nation. What's the theological perspective? Liberal critical said it would not accept the inerrancy of Scripture and much of the notes will reflect that.

[00:16:59] So much good scholarship in terms of kind of intellectual integration and credibility, but not an accurate view or in our view, not even a truthful view of what the Scriptures are saying. Now you will find more. But a study bible is certainly going to be something that you'll want on your shelf and be very, very helpful. And probably the first tool that most preachers refer to when they begin preparing a sermon. They'll look in their study Bible and get perspective that way. Second most used tool A concordance. Tell me how you use a concordance. You're looking at a text. How do you use a concordance? What do you do with the text? When you're looking at a concordance, why would you use it? Word study you're going to say there's a word. I wonder where else that is used. I wonder how it's used in other places in the Bible. So I begin to do word study through the use of a concordance. Now, that's kind of particularly if you're a preacher and a scholar and you're thinking, that's what I'm supposed to say. Concordance is a for that's what you say. I'm looking at how this word is used elsewhere in the Bible. But how do most of us use concordance? What do we do, particularly our generation? What do we do with the A.S.? We have a scripture in our mind, and I'm saying I know that somewhere in the Bible. And so what do we do? We look up the word and we find the text. Now, two main at least English versions of concordance are available up to this generation. So they kind of say what they are. They are young and strong. This is a young they are both dependable Bible believing in their approach, but they have differences.

[00:18:40] Young does this young group's words according to their original language route. So if you're looking at the word love, it will group all the references to love that are agape. It will and it will also group all the references to love that are philia civil a group them according to their original language root. What's a strong do? It grips them according to their English usage. So we'll put all the love words together right in a row, and it really will not take care to say now this misses this Greek word for love, and that's that Greek word for love. So people have had some language, original language background typically prefer young people who are English based only typically prefer Strong's. Now, Strong's has a way of compensating for the fact that it does not attach itself or group itself according to the original language roots. You know what it is? The number system. Somebody said it. What it has is next to the English word. Occasionally, depending on what edition of strong that you have, it might actually have the Greek word kind of listed by it. But it will often. But the modern versions will have a numbering system that go after the word. And that numbering system is connected to a number of other resources that you can buy, that you can then find out, oh, what is the Greek root of that word and where is that word used elsewhere? And like vines, New Testament word dictionary, it will actually take you to the dictionary references of those words. So you can read a lot of the Greek background of that. So again, when you've got a little original language background, Youngs tends to be more efficient because it will tell you the, as I say, the original language root and group it according to that.

[00:20:28] But strong gives you the same ability to work through an English based system by using their numbering system. Now, I said, that's mostly what the last generation would have depended upon. There is something else going on today which has nothing to do with those hardbound books, which is what? What will a lot of you use as concordance is? You'll use your computers and you'll use something like this. This is actually the concordance for the English standard version. So this is the ESV concordance that's computerized. Some of you will use software like logos. Probably the most popular used. Some of you, if you get more technical, will use things like Gram Court, which is also, by the way, quite expensive but more technical. So there are ways to do computer searches and I would guess I do. Now, most of you know, I use probably for the first 15 or 20 years of my ministry, I, you know, you can see it's been bound up a couple of times. I use I use the young I hardly ever use it anymore. It gathers dust on myself now. Almost always I'm doing computer searches and computer concordance and I use Graham Cord, but that's because the seminaries license to do so. So I recognize it's quite expensive. My guess is most of you will use either Bible works, logos, anything else that you're using. Concordance rate would be another that that are out there. Now, you have to say some of these companies come and go, right? So the ones that have kind of a lap, I think the premier one that has lasted is logos in terms of most seminarians using that. Beyond concordance is the next thing that is very common for use is a topical Bible.

[00:22:06] Now a concordance is allowing you to search the Bible for word use. Where is that word appearing elsewhere in the Bible? A topical Bible is allowing you to search for the topic. Where else is it in the Bible? So I can go to This is a nave type of concordance and I can here. I just opened up the kingdom. So it is going to tell me the various places that the topic of Kingdom is addressed in the Bible. And this is an exhaustive name, by the way, so it doesn't just list the reference. It actually gives me all the verses that are in that reference. Now, that's a very, for me, a fast way of studying. If I'm giving a lesson on intercessory prayer, you know, I can look up prayer, subset, intercessory and the name is going to give me most of the major places in the Bible that intercessory prayer appears. And I can do a quick study of that just by going through a topical in a topical Bible name is the most used one in English language. And I don't know that there's a good computer program doing this yet that actually tries topically to deal with such issues similar to names, somewhat different. Some of you may know the Thompson teaching reference Bible, Thompson chain reference. So what it's doing is it's dealing with a topic as it appears in the biblical text. So you're going through Genesis and you come across something about the curse. And what the Thompson Cheney reference will do is it will say, all right, here's its first reps and it will actually take you to the next place in the Bible that that reference appears or something about the curse appears. Then when you get there, it will actually change you to the next place.

[00:23:47] In the Bible, something about the curse appears. And then the next thing you know, as you keep turning it, just chain reference Bible, it just links the chain of that topic through the Bible. And then when you get all the way to the back of the Thompson King reference, it will list then altogether what that chain has been. So it will give you a fairly extensive study of some of those things at the back when it begins to link the chain together and say, Now this is where Kingdom appears. And it just lists it all together. So the Thompson chain reference is really more methodical than names, but names by far as the more abbreviated and quick way of doing it. But but what I do sometimes and I'm going to guess you'll do it too, is you're actually studying a text and and you come across something and you didn't even recognize that it was chained somewhere. And the Thompson chain references saying, by the way, this is also over here. Well, I'd better look there and see what's going on there, too, you know. And so it just kind of leads you forward into that kind of study task and chain reference. So the things we've covered so far are study Bibles, second concordance and third, topical Bibles are various ways that we can study a text. Now, a fourth way that we can study a text is looking at various translations. We look at the text that we are studying and we begin to look at it in various translations. Now, I'm not asking you to do this, but this is actually a little book that talks about the New Testament in 26 translations, so you can compare 26 translations in the new ten.

[00:25:18] I do not have an Old Testament version. I can't imagine how big such a book would be. But this is a real little type and it gives me 2726 translations that I can compare as I'm going through the New Testament. I hardly ever do it. It's overwhelming. But there are certain translations that I will almost always compare. Most of the churches in which I preach these days are using NIV, so I most of the time prepare my sermons in IV. Sometimes I still go to churches that use King James. So if I'm going in, I know I'm in a church that's King James. I will certainly compare those translations. There is something that's kind of working its way into the evangelical and reformed world. What translation is that? The ESV, the English Standard version. And again, my sense is that's kind of more concentrated in seminary use right now than it is in Y churches. So it makes me do this, though. However, these days, if I'm preparing something in, I b I almost always check it in the ESV. I almost always do that these days because I recognize enough people may be looking at the ESV that they'll go, Wait, that's not what my Bible says. And I want to be able to to deal with that in the sermon. But, you know, that's not the main reason I am comparing translations. The main reason I'm comparing translations is I will begin to be able to pinpoint very precisely where there are issues in the text. You know, this translation kind of went that way and this translation kind of went that way. As soon it brought to me a question yesterday, we were working on a sermon together and he brought it to said in in the NIV.

[00:26:59] It says, as Jesus was walking on the water, it says he he passed by the disciples in the NIV, in the ESV. It says he intended to pass by the disciples. No, you know what? You know, there may be something really going on there. Is it just incidental passing by? Or did he purposefully intend to pass by? Well, if I see that strong a difference, I know I'm going to have to look it up. Where? In the Greek, you know. I know. I got to find out what's going on here, because there's a significant enough difference in the translations that it's drawing my attention. That's actually what I call pinpoint exegesis. Exegesis is where we use the original language to determine what a text means. So there are times when I will love to just kind of dig into a text and be able to translate the whole thing and work it through. And that's great. There are times when I can't do that, and it is when I compare translations that I learn Where do I have to spend my exegetical nickels? I can really tell there is an issue here. I better research so I know what I'm talking about. So comparing translations will help me do that. As you think about various translations, I. I guess I want to caution you about what I consider to be. I don't know if you do or not, but considered to be sometimes. Senseless and unnecessary debates. If you were trained in InterVarsity, if you did lots of inductive Bible study on college campuses, what translation did you typically use? Anybody know? University guys in here. NAACP New American Standard Bible. Why? Yes, it is the most literal of the translations. The NASD is the most literal of the translations.

[00:28:53] So in just kind of lockstep, it is following the Greek and Hebrew, even as much as it can word order. So it is the most literal of the translations. And you must say that is very helpful when you're doing inductive Bible study and trying to do a very close reading of the text. Now, while that's very helpful for Bible students. For whom is it sometimes difficult to read? Average people in the pew. Now what we've just said, it's got a great strength. It's a very probably the most literal, the translations. What's its weakness? Sometimes its language is very wooden and not easy to follow even at times, because you recognize that no matter where you translate something, you are going to have to do certain idiomatic translation and change. One of the idioms for in Hebrew for a man's getting angry is. His nose glows. Now, if I just translated it, his nose glows. You know, what does everybody with an English Bible going to do? You know what? Has he got a cold? What? You know? You know, he's drinking again. It's his nose glows. So what am I going to do? I'm going to take that literal translation. And what will I do with it? I'll put it in my idiom. After he got angry, he got very mad. You know, something like that. I will put it in English idiom to make sense of it. Now, the NAACP will do that, too. But the Bible that takes the most care is most concerned. To look at the original translation and put it in what's called dynamic equivalence, to put it in the dynamic equivalence of how we speak. Who's trying to do that? What translation makes It's almost calling card dynamic equivalence.

[00:30:41] In I.V. The Navy took great care. I mean, that's kind of its calling card to go dynamic equivalence. But now we've got the strength is it's very readable. In fact, as I recall, they were going for a fourth grade reading level. Fourth graders would be able to read it. That's its great strength. What then becomes its weakness? Dynamic equivalence is always not very. What? Not very literal at times. Not very literal at times. So you have to say, why would I have all these other study tools so that I know precisely what's being said? And if I feel that dynamic equivalence needs to be elaborated on. I can do that. Kind of the in-between is going to be the ESV. Okay. Now, the ESV is not an original translation. There was a translation that preceded it. Do you know what that was? The RSV, the revised standard version. The revised standard version was translated by liberal scholars who are trying to update the King James. Now, the great advantage of the King James in all English culture is its kind of what, because it hung around for so many hundred years. It's what most people kind of have in their heads as the version of the Bible they're familiar with. So what the RNC did was try to update the King James and keep that majesty of language, almost the poetry of it. The trouble was they were liberal scholars, so they put in liberal scholarship at times. And some of the classic places are things like Isaiah 714 where they not say that a virgin will be with child. What did they say? A young girl, they would not affirm the virgin prophecy of Isaiah 714. You know, that's pretty serious. You know, you kind of go, now, I.

[00:32:29] Now, what the ESV did, after numerous years of the RSV being out there is evangelical scholar said we know that the King James is still widely used in this culture and we know that the RSV is trying to maintain the majesty of that style. So we want to take the RSV and it's pretty apparent where those liberal inundations are. Let's come at it with a Bible believing approach, and that's what the ESV does. It's trying to maintain the historic majesty of the English versions at the same time with a Bible believing approach and the ESV. I love I will tell you now, part of the reason I do is because I was raised on the King James. And you know what happens in my brain? If you if you ask me, you know what verse the you know what the verses always come to my brain in King James. It just does it won't probably for your generation but, but that's what's in my head. It's why these different study tools are so helpful because so many of them are based on the King James, at least initially. So the ESV is very helpful. Maintaining Majesty and accuracy. Majesty and accuracy is what the ESV does. Now, here's where the debate comes. People will say those naive scholars, they were so concerned for dynamic equivalence, they're not even concerned to be accurate. In fact, it's just of the devil, what they're doing. Now, whether major publishers publish those books that actually call the universe satanic, and some of you are nodding your heads because you know that simply by saying people trying to do dynamic equivalence instead of literal are somehow serving the devil. Or there are churches even yet this day that are King James, only you know that he was good enough for Jesus.

[00:34:14] It must be good enough. Well, there are even churches that talk about the St James Bible. When the Pilgrims came to the United States, What King was in power? Who were they trying to get away from? King James. He was no saint. Now he was trying to establish his own authority over the Church of England. So he asked scholars to translate a Bible for him that would not be dependent upon the Roman church. And they happened to be Bible believing scholars. And it is a great translation that has survived the centuries. But the man for whom they were working was not a very nice guy. And of course, there has been much scholarship that has continued to unfold. And that's why King James is wonderful. At the same time, there are other issues going on that make each of these translations. If they are translated by Bible believing scholars quite helpful. Let me just give you one more. Some of the greatest knocks on Bible translation come against things like the living letters, the various paraphrased Bibles. You know, they're not even trying to be accurate at all. So the paraphrased Bibles help certain people. And can they be helpful to you? Who are the paraphrased Bibles designed to help? People with very low Bible literacy. Sometimes children. After all, Eugene Peterson, you know, on the train going back and forth to work in Chicago, was translating for his children. So, you know, somehow it got into print. You know, it's sold hundreds of millions of copies and everything. But at the same time, he was intending it for his children. Do you ever say a Bible story to your child in simpler language than the Bible says it? Are you evil because you did.

[00:36:06] You had a reason, right? And so much when I want you to feel is every one of these Bible believing translations has a purpose. Now, if you make it cross its purpose, it will not be useful to you. But if you begin to weigh strengths and weaknesses, who are you talking to? What's the purpose? Then you can help. You know where I use a paraphrased Bible at times? It's when I'm wanting to get the gist of a lot of material at once. And I'm really not wanting to wade through the meticulous details. So I'm wanting to say, you know what? I just want to be reminded what a judge friend say to him. And I know that's going to run across about 25 chapters. So I just want to go, you know, get through it real quick. And sometimes a paraphrased Bible can help me do that. I'm probably not going to preach from paraphrase Bible, but if I want to get a lot of material in front of me that can help. So various translations comparing them are ways that we may be able to help our interpretation. Another way that we help our interpretation after various translations are Bible dictionaries. Who was our Xerxes after all? And when did he rule? And what was his language? And who do you interact with? I may simply have to look up art as our seats and a Bible dictionary. It's just like a dictionary, except it's taking me to Bible terms and Bible places and Bible people. So if I want to look up something here just because mediator I can look up. How is the term mediator developed in the Bible or incarnation or where was that era? You know, and kind of people live there.

[00:37:41] There was a question. Yes. About Texas reset this debate, the Texas reset, this debate, which you'll get into in another class. But the Texas reset this debate is the King James and the new King James are based on what is called the Texas receptors or the Byzantine text. And there is an argument that that was the the main. Form of translation that existed in the church up until the time of the King James translation. Did God therefore providentially preserve the Byzantine texts or the Texas receptors? And therefore it becomes the main version that the Church should depend upon? Here the argument if God providentially preserved it and the church used it for all the centuries, isn't it the one that we should most depend on? Have I said it well enough? That's kind of the debate. And what most people will say is the Texas receptors certainly is one of the most dependable of the text. But the Texas receptors we know have problems, too. So I think most evangelical Bible believing scholars are willing to say the Texas receptors may be a starting point, but it can't be the end point. There are other things that need to inform us and the fact that we have now thousands of more texts that we know about from the time that the King James translators used, the Texas receptors would seem to indicate we ought to take all the information that we have and not just kind of ignore it to say this is what the church did for these centuries. So we're not going to learn any more from these other texts. My own problem with the Texas receptors is it's the primarily depending only on the Western tradition. So it's saying only what the Western church used is dependable and does not consider what other major cultural uses of the Bible that they don't have anything to say to us.

[00:39:35] It is a raging debate, although I will tell you it's a little quieter right now. If you were back, what, 12, 15 years ago, it was really raging. Probably not as big a debate right now. I tell you what a Bible dictionary was. Got the idea. Look up words. You don't know people you don't know, places you don't know in a Bible dictionary. And again, you can go very fast. Another thing that you'll use and you'll get are these. Just as you're working through the curriculum, here are these lexical A's, lexical or grammatical aides. This is some of you already have this. I know this is Bauer, Art and Gingrich, which is just a basically a dictionary of Greek words. So just as we have a dictionary of English words, this is a dictionary of Greek words. And they're, of course, the same things for Hebrew and challah and, you know, different things, Aramaic. There are various dictionaries or lexicons for those. There are also grammars and there are things in many of the programs that you have that will help you do exegetical lexical study, even in a computerized way. You can do this in your log off software, can't you? You can look up a word that's in a particular verse and you can say, what was the original Greek word? What was the tense, what was the gender, Where is it used elsewhere? And then you can all make A's. And, you know, there are wonderful AIDS out there. And often the Bible software will help you do that, that it will do a lot of searching and tell you a lot of grammatical things that you'll need to know. Sometimes you will, however, simply need to use lexicons to look up things very celestial age.

[00:41:12] The big category I haven't gotten to yet is what commentaries? The commentaries themselves, where they are not depending on you doing the primary research. But somebody else has done this work through all these exegetical tools and historical patterns, and they're now putting together their own commentary on that text. Yes. There are other versions. That kind of. We'll get. What's the depth when the Expositor is New Testament and you had Nicole, as I recall, is that right? Or Nicole? Excuse me. And what's. What's. In brief order and we'll talk about a little more just a second. There are many commentaries, but many will comment from their theological perspective. So one of the things that's important to know and I'll go there because I've got in my hand and tell you, is to get something like a guide to biblical commentaries. Now, this is what our faculty has put together, but you can also buy various ones. And in the footnotes of my book, particularly the edition that's coming out, they're updated. What are various publishers on the market who have published guides to the commentaries? That's too much. These typically are in the library that you can pick up. And what they will say is this is the theological bent of this commentator. He's dispositional, he's liberal, he's evangelical, he's reform, he's Bible believing he's not. So buy. You're getting a guide to biblical commentaries. You will get the theological perspective of the various commentaries. So what you had was one that is not evangelical, and it is a commentary. It's a commentary based on the Greek text. So you can get commentaries based on the Greek text or the English text. You're going right where I want to go. There are all kinds of commentaries.

[00:43:11] Let's see some of them real quickly. You can get a whole Bible commentary that is a Bible tries to give you a brief comment on virtually everything in the box. There's a whole Bible commentary. This is put out by whom? This is urban. This is a new Bible commentary. And this particular version from Erdmann is basically translated by evangelicals. Okay. ERDMAN This is a little bit awkward as a publisher because sometimes they publish evangelical things and sometimes they don't. And more often in recent years, they don't. But so you need, again, a commentary, a guide to say, what's the drift of this? But to go to an evangelical publisher, Baker crossways something like that and get a whole Bible commentary, you'll be able to know very well this is dependable information. There's a whole Bible commentary. What else is going to happen? Single book commentaries. Right. Just look at a particular book of the Bible. So this one happens to be on the Gospel of Luke. And this is from the new international commentary in the New Testament. And if you were to use your commentary guide, you would find out that this is an evangelical Bible believing commentary set. This comes out of a whole set of covering the whole New Testament. And actually, by this time, most of the Old Testament by evangelicals. So again, I would not encourage you, by the way, at this stage of your seminary career to go out and start buying huge batches of commentaries. You know, what I really encourage you to do is during your time here, when you're working on sermons, get accustomed to going to the library and grabbing different ones. You will find that some commentaries are very much original language based. We are going to give you commentary on the Greek here.

[00:44:51] Some commentaries are very scholarly and dense, and there, you know, they are really dealing with historic debates of that particular text. There are also homosexual article commentaries which are not so much saying what have been the scholarly debates, but how do you preach this text? And over the time, while you're in seminary preparing sermons, find out what most speaks to you. And of course, all of these categories blend, don't they? Because even in English, commentary is going to refer to some Greek and even a homosexual commentary is going to be scholarly at times and even academic commentaries at times going, I want to give you preaching hints. So this is the spectrum, you know, not firm categories. And as we recognize that, you begin to find out, you know, what confuse is somebody I can really use almost all the time, you might say. I really like that. And so you might think somewhere down the road that might be where I invest the money. And typically in your senior year, the bookstore gives you a big discount if you buy this book says. But I would get and by the way, the seminary gets no money from that. But if you know, I wouldn't encourage you, just go buy tons of commentaries yet. Find out what they're like. Use some of these commentary guides to get familiar with what's there. And just part of your seminary experience, Right? Is just becoming familiar with the tools that are out there. And over time you'll get a pretty fair understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of them when you go to buy. If you didn't buy from a seminary bookstore, I hope you know that not only Amazon.com is a good place to get things, but things like CBD.

[00:46:22] Some of you right? I just took a page out of the catalog. Which Christian book discounters? Is that what it is? Distributors. But they are discounters, obviously. So you can get pretty good prices and you'll talk to your peers and have many more ideas over time. Finally, last thing Beyond the commentaries are just topical books. Books that may deal with a particular topic, and the whole book is on that topic. Here is one by one of our historic professors here at John Sanderson called the Fruit of the Spirit. And he was just dealing with Galatians five. Right. So it's a whole book just on one portion of a chapter. And that gets you, of course, very thick into the issues that are going on in Galatians, the fifth chapter on the fruit of the Spirit. All these are just about what are tools we have for developing or for studying a text? Yes. Yes. Commentaries from the 1950s or let's say, commentaries from the 1750s. Are they useful? And the answer is they are very useful, typically more useful in terms of. Hum a lot of insight. And what should I say? Spiritual insight of what's going on. They often will be out of date in terms of scholarship. But they're typically very much up to date on what has happened to that point even. I will tell you at times, a commentary from the 1950s may be much better saying what was the debate going on at that time or even in the 19th century? We may be less interested at that now, but oftentimes you'll find issues that need to be dealt with that are not so much on the forefront of scholars attention at this time. They are useful, therefore, more for spiritual and hommel medical reasons than for academic study.

[00:48:20] Some of you use Matthew Henry's commentary. There's a classic one. Almost everybody uses Matthew Henry at some point. And the reason is because his pastoral insights are so good, even though you'll recognize it. Or Barkley would be another lot of these Barkley Barkley pastoral insights are so good, though the scholastic insights will be somewhat dated. It's a good question. Now, I'm going to zoom, everybody. I'm just going to go very fast with the rest of this. Okay. So forgive me for that, but here we go. What's the value of having a text? Believe me, it is not for a holy aura, you know? Well, we're preaching, so we better have it. It is because we want to say what God says. That's the reason we have a text so that we will say what God says. Has it always been true in the history of preaching that preachers have texts that they preach from? Absolutely not. There are certainly eras of preaching in which doctrinal development, more than textual commentary was the basis of preaching. But that was prior typically to the non-Christian consensus in which we now live and which you kind of talk about a doctrinal subject and people just kind of roll with you. At this point, people want to know what's your authority for that? So having the text is pretty much where we are now. How do we select a text? What are some rules for selecting a text? You may remember in your reading I talked about this. I think when I when I first started preaching, I thought it was virtually my obligation to take people to obscure and difficult texts. Why? Why? Why do we feel like, you know, I really have to show them the tough stuff? Why would we do such things? To show we know what we're talking about.

[00:50:00] Robert. Exactly right to show. We know what we're talking about. Is that what they always need? It may not be. So that creates certain problems. If you're only going to difficult tasks, what are you actually convincing people the Bible is like? It's a code book. That's right. It's something if you don't have the decoder ring, you can't figure it out. And by the way, who begins to serve as the decoder ring mate? You got to have me. But the goal of great preaching is to say, you can read this. You can figure this out. Let me show you how you can. The goal of great preaching is not to make people dependent on you. It's to make them dependent on the Word of God and therefore teaching them how they can read it. So we ought to have some do not sense and be careful here. What are things that we want not to do? Do not are about four of these. Do not avoid familiar text. Do not avoid familiar text. Why is a text familiar in the life of the church? Why would it be familiar? Cause it's important because they're very. Because through the ages, the church has highlighted this so that if it's familiar, it may be because it's important. Maybe because it's very accessible might be another reason. But to deny people both what is important or accessible is actually to damage them. So the Christ, if you kind of say what was he willing to speak on, you recognize that he was willing to speak on time's very simple things. The birds of the air, Jonah, you know, things that people were familiar with. If you look at some of the great preachers of the past. SPURGEON When people survey all his sermons, the sermons that the greatest reform preacher that we know of in modern history was.

[00:51:46] SPURGEON And the most common text were Zacchaeus. The prodigal son and Joshua over and over again that he is the prodigal son in Joshua. Now, remember, at that time he was speaking to the affluent. He was not in an affluent portion, but they were affluent people who came to his church and his often speaking to affluent people who would come to his church in a working class, working class part of London. Why would. SPURGEON Speaking to affluent people coming to a working class church, keep reminding them of Zacchaeus. Keep them aware of what those people are experiencing. And what what did Zacchaeus do? How is he making his living? He was taking advantage of other people. And what did he say he would do when he was found to be wrong? He was going to he was going to restore. How many times? Four times. Boy, would this be challenging to talk to affluent people coming to a working class. Remember Zacchaeus? Remember Zacchaeus? He thought he was going to make his way by his wealth and his wiles. But he could not do it that way. That was not the way to go. What about the prodigal son? Why would he keep saying the prodigal son over and over again? If you've messed up. There is a way back. Keep going quickly. Do not search for obscure text. You already know that. Not only do we not avoid familiar text, we do not search for obscure text. That's two, but three. I hope you recognize the balance. Number three did not purposely avoid any scripture. Do not purposely avoid any scripture, Paul said to the Athenian elders. I have not hesitated to communicate to you the word the whole counsel of God. Whatever was needful for you, I was willing to address.

[00:53:39] By the way, if you would begin in preaching to skip portions, you're preaching through a book and then you start skipping portions. What does everybody in the congregation do? They'd go to that. They wouldn't know why you're skipping that. Okay. So to begin to avoid things is problematic, particularly in what we call consecutive preaching. We'll come to that in just a bit. Finally, not only do we not purposely avoid any scripture, we do not use spurious text. That was a strange word. I know when you're reading, but do not use spurious text. What is a spurious text? Yeah. Not the one at the well, the. But the woman. What makes it spurious. What is a spurious text. Okay. It is not in the original. It is not in the original autograph. We talk about the autographs. It is not what was originally in the Bible. It is not what the apostles or prophets wrote. So how did it get in there? She usually scribal inundation so somebody adding something in in later centuries. And one of the reasons that we look at the text of receptors and compare it to other translations is if we see any any translation, any major document going through history and it has a particular incident and we look at a thousand other textual documents and they don't, we typically think that wasn't inundation, that was something that was added in. There are classic ones of these first John five seven is the classic first. John five seven. There are these that bear witness in heaven, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And these three are one. Isn't that a great explanation of the Trinity right there in the Bible? Every Jehovah's Witness knows and is laying in wait for you to quote first John five seven because they will prove to you accurately it was not in the original text.

[00:55:34] So if you are trying to prove the Trinity out of first John five seven, you are in big trouble. Now is the Trinity other places in the Bible? Sure it is, but that is not the place to go. Other classics are things like this. Mark 929. This kind of work, this great test, this great miracle comes only by prayer and fasting. Unfortunately, the word fasting is not in the best manuscripts, nor the most numerous. Now, can you see how a scribe would be translating writing this down? This kind of work comes only about by prayer. And then, you know, just here's a monk in a monastery. What's he going to kind of write in and fasting, you know? You know, now all future scribes are going to do what they're going to say when I else that's kind of off here. I wonder if that was meant to be. And it was. And so it starts working its way in. But what is the advantage now? I hope all of you read the the j i packer when you actually say how many words do we have question about in the body of scripture? One word in what? A word. I mean, now we can we kind of throw up all these potential problems, but one word and a thousand. Do we have any question about. Now, if you are writing an essay for someone that's a thousand words and there's one word that you're unclear about, do you think the person basically knows what you're talking about? Our debate with the Liberals is not over what the text says. You need to hear me say that our debate with liberals is not over what the text says. We all know what the text says with very few exceptions.

[00:57:07] Our debate is whether you believe what the text says. Here's the difference. We know what the text says. The debate is whether you will believe it and obey it, because it's one thing to say. It's clear whether you believe Isaiah 714 said that Jesus was born of a virgin or not. What else clearly says that Jesus was born of a virgin? Matthew and Luke. So if you're not going to accept the virgin birth of Christ, you're not just evading a word in Isaiah. Ultimately, you are saying that what Matthew and Luke in the history of the church has said as an interpret that the Bible itself is not true. So you all are going to want me to answer all kinds of questions that are should be safe for New Testament can initially, but I'll try some if you got them because I'm going to fly here, read the Packer article. Okay. That's very helpful. In terms of your going through this. Here's the goal. We want to base a sermon on what the Holy Spirit said. Not what a scribe added. Based. So we talk about the orthography. Right. What was the original text? And that is why we use the various textual schools to help us understand. Have I scared off your questions or can I help? Yeah. Oh, that's a very good question. Not skip over passages, but at the same time, what happens if you're preaching to first John five seven and you've got it there, Don't you have to deal with it and answers? Yes, you have to deal with it. But one of the reasons you have to deal with it is virtually every Bible that your people are looking at is going to put an asterisk by and tell them it is not in the original text.

[00:58:49] So if you don't mention it, they're going to think you don't even know what their own Bibles are saying, because most dependable Bibles will actually tell you where we know these problems are. So I would think you have to at least comment to say something about we know that this crept in in later centuries, and while we recognize it reflects truth, it's not part of this original text. It's not inspired by the Holy Spirit. So that's a great question because you know that you've seen in your Bibles, right? There's an aspect or something that I actually tell people. So if you don't tell them, you know, they're going to say, You don't know what my own Bible says here. Yes, that. Because of the because of the dominance of the King James version. The question was, if the asterisk is there, why do they still have the verse there? And it's because of the dominance of the King James version in English culture that that that version continues to affect what people expect to see on the page. So if they were just a whole, they're not only would it be a whole, the verse numbers wouldn't work anymore. You know, verse six wouldn't be verse. You know, somehow they have to deal with the dominant influence of the King James version through this culture. Yeah. You know, it's. The King James version is. Bible translators is the King James Bible used by Bible translators. Inevitably, I mean, some is just too dominant in our culture for them not to be aware of what the King James says. They don't go back to the. Now they do go back to the original languages, but they have an awareness of how the King James has translated it.

[01:00:21] That's a good question. Probably some of the early paraphrases were English based on they only were translating the King James, but any of the good modern translations we're talking about are original language based. But the scholars who do it can't throw out of their minds the King James. I mean, they know, even as I said, the verse numbering, you know, they pretty much have to follow that. I wouldn't be so confused if they didn't. I'm going to keep going fast and be careful. What are we trying to be careful to do? The best sermons on God's word. That's what we're trying to do. We're basically affirming the sufficiency of the word. We're affirming the sufficiency of the words. So we're basing our sermons on God's Word. So what a scribe added. We don't feel we have to add in. The Holy Spirit gave what was sufficient. So we're basing our sermons on God's Word. The second is we try not to undermine people's confidence. You know what happens when I talk to you about spurious texts? Your hands just start flying up. Well, what about. Well, what about what about what happens if you approach the Bible? And I hear young guys doing this at times, they'll begin preaching from the Navy and they'll say this, You know what? The Navy translators just made a mistake here. This is better translated. Now, what does everybody in the pew begin to wonder? Well, where are the other mistakes? Well, you know what else is going on here? I would just encourage you candidly, to be aware of how arrogance can be projected. Well, all these scholars said, but I know better. But the other is just the awareness of how people interpret information. It's far better for people to say something like, you know, we gain an even richer understanding by knowing this additional background, see how, you know, become helpful to people.

[01:02:05] You know, this is what it says here. But we even gain more understanding when we know additionally and add additions rather than beginning to create suspicion of people's Bibles. Just because, you know, you you do know you've been a sinner, you know some more things than they do. Some beware of beware of motto text. Beware of motto texts. This is where tests are basically taken out of their context to create a model. I have become all things to all men. That I might, by all means, save some. Okay. I have to become all things. Well, there's some drug pushers out there, so I probably ought to become a. Drug pusher. You know, the guys in my frat, you know, they're really party animals sort of become all things to all men. You know, I really need to become a party animal so that I can really relate to them. Is that what that verse means? It's taking it out of context. Every heretic has his verse because what he takes it out of context, he said, is something that's there, but he takes it out of context. The classic one, one of the classic ones that I related in your readings to remember the the prohibitionist him touch not taste, not handle not remember that in your readings I just read you this longer verse version here strong drink is raging God hath said touch not taste not handle not and thousands It has captive lead touch not taste not handle not. It leads the young and strong and brave. It leads them to a drunkard's grave. It leads them where no arm can say so Touch, not taste, not handle Not now. That's a verse out of Colossians, which is being used to say you should not partake of alcohol.

[01:03:55] What's the problem with using the words touch, not taste, not handle, not in that way. How? What's the context in Colossians? Yes. It's the exact opposite. Paul is condemning those people who say touch, not, taste, not, handle not. He's using exactly the opposite meaning of what this him is doing. Now, granted, people may have very legitimate concerns about addictions. They have very legitimate concerns. But you want to be basing your objection on what the spirit says, not upon a wrangling of text that is not valid conditions for selecting a text. What are some conditions for selecting a text? Two basic philosophies. These are now known as flow and web flow and web two basic philosophies. The first is moving, flowing through a text and addressing situations as they come. You recognize this? I'm preaching through a book of the Bible. So as I am in chapter one, I'm flowing through the text. I think of the situations that can be addressed by the text that I'm in. The opposite is where. You find a you have a situation and you begin to look for a text to deal with it. That's when you have a situation of some sort and you begin to look for a text to deal with it. Now, again, there are historic debates and preaching over the appropriateness or non appropriateness of these things. I would just encourage you not to get caught up in hyperbole on either side. If Hurricane Ivan. Is very damaging. Will there be people, preachers in New Orleans or Mobile or the Panhandle of Florida? Will there be preachers who need to find a text to help their people deal with that? Of course. And if they have been rolling through Isaiah for the past six months, might it be a good idea to move to another text for right now? It might be a good idea.

[01:05:58] Sometimes the situation demands that we find a text. Sometimes, of course, it's best to move consecutively through a book in the Bible because when you do, you can address many different issues that you would naturally have thought of if you were just on your own. So you're taking people through the thought of an apostolic writer in order to do that. Here are possibilities of how we select a text if you're aware of both web and flow. The first possibility for how we select the text is known as consecutive preaching. Consecutive preaching. Chapter by chapter, book by book. Right Living chapter by chapter, book by book. What are some of the advantages of consecutive preaching? What do I not have to do every Sunday now I have to research a new book. Well, I kind of get to know what Colossians about, but now I get Philippians. Now I got to learn what I say. You know, going consecutively through a book really helps the preacher's research process. Okay. That helps me a lot. It also helps me to avoid what am I going to preach on this week? You know. Well, last week was the first chapter of the series. You know, it helps me avoid a lot of that. What does it teach God's people when you're moving consecutively through a book? The cohesion of the text, how the logic of the writer is developing. By the way, while I've mentioned chapter by chapter, consecutive preaching is very much related to what's called vesicular preaching vesicular, which is not chapter by chapter, but what first verse, verse by verse could be one verse at a time, or it could be what we normally do, expository unit to expository unit, paragraph to paragraph or narrative to narrative, moving in thought units like that.

[01:07:36] Another possibility beyond consecutive preaching is subject series, identifying various subjects and doing series of preaching on that subject in your churches. The preacher ever done a series on the family? Or marriage relationships. Or healing the brokenness caused by gossip. A series on a subject. Remember that topical Bible? The topical Bible to deal with a topic in series. Advantages of this. What are they? Why would you deal with a topic and keep going at it in a series? What are the advantages of that? More time to deal with a topic. Yes. There may be a particular need that you're addressing. So it allows you to deal with a particular need and in greater depth. So those are certainly things. And of course there is a certain a certain sense of contemporaneity, you know, being very contemporary, what you're dealing with. I'm dealing with a subject people are really concerned about. Another possibility is the calendar. The calendar. Where are we in the in the year? Now, I gave you some hints on this, and you're reading all kinds of debates in reform circles about what days you can honor and what you cannot recognize. Those debates are there. And again, I think you have to execute not only the text but your congregation and your situation. What can you deal with in most of our churches not to deal with the nativity at Christmas time and not to deal with the resurrection at Easter is going to just be perceived as quite odd. Now there are a few churches where people will say that's just that's just being Catholic. You know, you're honoring holy days. Now, I would say even John Calvin did not believe that, you know, Calvin was willing to honor the major days of the church year, but not tie them to the SACERDOTE system.

[01:09:35] So he was willing to do that. And, you know, you can read those debates, and I don't mean to solve them in your brains, but I do mean to make you aware that that most preachers in this culture keep an awareness of where we are in the holidays, in the years and only the church holidays. But at times, the national and other kinds of holidays, I said with some tongue in cheek, you can fail to mention fathers on Father's Day and be fine, but you may be in trouble with no mention of mothers on Mother's Day. Now we smile and laugh, and you may even find that offensive. I don't know. But it's just an awareness of where this culture is that you've got to deal with. Even if you object to it. So be aware of those things. The dangers of subject series and even calendar series is that we can begin to concentrate on cultural preferences or personal preferences rather than the Bible here that we can begin to concentrate on. I just love talking about the problem of gambling in this culture. So, you know, now this is my 52nd series on the subject of gambling. Now, two things will happen. People will, first of all, get very bored. But secondly, who will they think really has a problem with gambling? You. It's your problem. So subject series may begin to highlight my own sin struggles in ways that I did not intend to. If I can't move off a subject, if all the time I'm talking about since struggle in one area, then people will begin to think this person doesn't know what I'm going through. It must be what they're going through. Or we can just begin to write hobby horses, right? It's just my interest.

[01:11:14] Rather than truly preparing God's people for the spectrum of their concerns. Some standards for interpreting a text. You know these now be true to the text. Be true to the text. They use historical grammatical method versus spiritualism. Sometimes called the allegorical method. We are looking for the literal meaning. Now that scares people. You mean you're one of those fundamentalist who believe the Bible? Literally. Well, the reformers used the word the census literals, the phrase census literals. That is the literal sense of the words. What was actually being communicated? Modern terminology. What is the discourse? Meaning? Not literal. I'm taking words. Wouldn't when you say it was raining cats and dogs, you mean the cats and dogs are falling out of the sky? Now, what is the discourse? Meaning? It's raining very hard. That's what you mean. So when a prophet may refer to the word of God going to the four corners of the Earth, does he mean that the Earth is square? Do you sometimes refer to the four corners of the earth? You mean the compass settings, Right? So it is taking the sense of the author and saying what the author intended to say. Is what we believe. Here that what the author intended to say is what we believe is not literal wooden silly use of language. It is looking for discourse meaning. So number two is determining the author's intent. Determining the author's intent. To do this, we will examine language. Genre, text features and context, both a historical and literary context. So special cautions here in language. Be cautious about depending on English language. Only be cautious about depending on English language only if you're in Philippians two versus 12 and 13, work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

[01:13:27] What? Work out your salvation with fear and trembling for its God. Is it working you both to willing to do his good pleasure? I actually don't know how you can explain that verse if you don't know the Greek behind it. That you know that the first work reference is about working something in a continual way and the second fourth God who's at work is a is a verb of completed action. You'll be working on what God's done. Otherwise, if you say work out your salvation with fear and trembling, I don't know anybody can do that. I don't know how you could explain it with English only. Also, be careful of depending on out of date translations. Be careful of depending on out of date translations. The King James of First Thessalonians 415 says We who are alive shall not prevent the dead from rising. We who are alive when Christ comes, shall not prevent the dead. Now, can you perceive what that means? Push them down. We shall not prevent them from rising. You know what's the actual meaning of prevent in the King James? Precede. Come before. That's what it means. So we're dependent on that English only and an older translation we will not recognize at all what is meant by genre. Different things here. A prophecy that is not presented as predicted will get you in big trouble. You'll. You'll interpret it wrongly. Isaiah 40 is about the suffering servant who gives us assurance but is talking about the Messiah to come. So if we do not place Isaiah 40 in the future, we'll misinterpret the text. Parables. Parables. We look for the meaning core rather than try to make every particular mean something. We look for the meaning core rather than make every particular mean something.

[01:15:20] In the account of Lazarus and die. This the rich man speaks to the poor man across an abyss, and they talk to one another across a physical abyss between heaven and hell. Does that mean that there is physical distance between heaven and hell? And if the saints in heaven talk to those who are in hell. Is that what that means? It doesn't mean that at all. What is being expressed is the core meaning of the parable which we should recognize. There is not a chance of returning to this earth again to establish our justification before God. Now is the time. So we pushed the parable beyond what its intention was when we looked at every particular instead of its core meaning. Proverbs Proverbs are prescriptive, not predictive. Proverbs are prescriptive, not predictive. A soft answer turns away. RATH. Now, that stopped promise, of course, that when you ask for people softly, they'll never get mad at you. And what it means. Says right there in the Bible, a soft answer will turn away wrath. A proverb is prescriptive. The wise people lay at the heart. It is the council for how they should live. It is not an absolute promise of what will occur. You know it, a soft answer does not always turn away. RATH What about this train of a child in the way in which he should go? And when he's old, he will not depart from it? Is that always true? Every good parents always raises good children, and bad children are obvious evidence of bad parenting. That's true. You ever heard it preached that way? People took a proverb and they made it predictive rather than prescriptive. And it is not predictive. It is not an absolute promise or prediction of what will occur.

[01:17:08] What father in the Scripture is presented as an ideal father and raises a bad son. Luke, 15, The father who raised the prodigal son. Narratives versus didactic passages in narratives. We have to look at the actions for what communicates truth rather than the words. In all cases, the actions more than the words or in addition to the words I should say. Actually in a narrative what someone says may be false. Joe's friends say very bad things, and yet it's in the Bible. You know, if you're just quoting Joe's friends are saying through things, you're in big trouble because ultimately they are lying and telling him wrong things. What we're trying to do is this maintain understand the text features for their function are the chapter and verse divisions inspired? They are not. If a word is italicized, is that therefore for emphasis? No, it's because it was missing in the original language. Okay. Italicized words are saying this is being filled in for the flow of language. This is word did not appear in the original is not there for emphasis. It's there for the emphasis. The book order is not inspired. Matthew being the four, Luke, etc. The book Order is also not inspired. What we're trying to do, of course, for all of these things is remember the context in interpretation. Context is always part of the text. Context is always part of the text. Romans 14 and 15. If you do not read Romans 14, you get exactly opposite what is meant by Romans 15 of whose weak and whose strong. You'll get exactly backwards if you don't read Romans 15 in the context of Romans 14 or the one I really love. Genesis 3149. May the Lord watch between you and me whenever we are apart.

[01:19:08] Remember that you didn't have people print that on coins, break apart, give that to one another. This is, of course, what Laban said, The Jacob. And what does it mean? May the Lord watch between you and me whenever we are apart. What does that mean? If you come back across my territory, I will slit your throat. And may the Lord watch between you and me while we're apart. That's what it means. And people see these wonderful sentimental things, and you go, That is not what it means. What is the context? Possible approaches. Go real quick here. For interpretation, the broad view. Sometimes we have to take a lot of text at once. This is recognizing I've got to deal with the early and later part of jump to deal with it. So I will distill a lot of material. That's the broad view. I can distill it down and preach it accurately. That's often what we do in narratives, take a lot of material and distill it down to its essence. The narrow view is exploding, the implications. I'll take one verse, one paragraph and tell you the implications of it. And I want you to know those are both legitimate preaching approaches to distill a lot of information or to explode a little information. They're both legitimate ways of preaching and at times both necessary. Final thought for today is not to deny yourself to me, not to deny your people your interpretation. Not to deny yourself or your people your interpretation. Here's one of the great dangers that you can have in seminary when you get familiar with all these commentaries and so forth. I want to preach on a text and where's the first place I run to figure out how to do it? I go to a commentary.

[01:20:50] Now what's going to happen? Whose thoughts am I going to think? Somebody else's thoughts. Somebody who's away from the situation. Maybe even dead years ago. We don't want a preacher dead or a decent person. Sermon believes that God put you in this situation to minister to these people. He wanted you here. So we want to be those who are thinking God's thought for these people and be careful not to preach a dead or a distant man's sermon. The way we do that is we study the text even as we study God's people and say, What is God saying to me for these people and start down the path believing that God has a purpose for you. Now, are we going to check ourselves? Sure we are. We're going to use all these tools and make sure we're going down proper paths. But I would encourage you not to make your first step. What do the commentators say? Make your first step, read, digest the text, and say what the God's people need to hear. And then progressed that way. See you next time. Remember, you have an assignment. Do. At that point, Dr. Swine will be your lecturer on Friday.