The Value of the Historical Nature of the Biblical Text.

I would like to talk about the historical principle of Biblical interpretation. It seems to me that the historicity of the scripture is seriously under attack in this age of modern criticism. Andreas and Richard said that “true faith is rooted in a text that reveals not only literary but also a historical reality.”[1] If Bible is talking about literal historical events, and it “reveals historical reality,” that is a death sentence too much of major modern scientific theory.

We can explore this personally. Think of David and Bathsheba, the story has a theological and literally moral, however, the poignant nature of the story is in the fact that it is a historical reality. When someone reads Psalm 51, they can feel David’s tears of repentance. The story comes to life in that it was alive in the first place.

If archaeology did not back up the biblical account it would lead to a problem of reliability. However, archaeology does backup the biblical accounts. Therefore, beyond the fact that historical nature of the text makes it personally relatable, the historical nature of the text proves that it is reliable and that adds another nail in the coffin of the theorist.  Much of the Bible purports to be a record of events. Think of the Exodus account about the Passover and the instruction for the people to make it a “memorial day.”[2] You cannot legitimately have a memorial for a fictitious event. Second, the context of the speaker and the hearer is the only way to have a foundation of understanding the text. If the Bible can be separated from its historical context then anyone can presume any meaning for any part of the text. Fortunately, it cannot be separated from history because it is a actuate account of the history of God’s redemptive plan.

 

 

————————————-

[1] Andreas J. Köstenberger and Richard Duane Patterson, Invitation to Biblical Interpretation: Exploring the Hermeneutical Triad of History, Literature, and Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2011). 97.

[2] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2016), Ex 12:14.

Posted in Thought of the Day.