Bible Interpretation Class – Hiawatha Bible Chapel
Dealing With Discrepancies/Analogy of Scripture
Lesson 4 – March 25th 2017
Dealing with Discrepancies
Following are some suggested principles to apply when confronted by an apparent error in the Scriptures:
Not every “error” that is thrown in our faces, or that we come across in the Bible is an actual error. Following are some examples:
Is Inerrancy of Scripture important? If so, why?
The question may be asked, since we only presume inerrancy in the original autographs, and since none of them still exist, is the inerrancy of the Bible still an important doctrine? A suggested answer from Professor Joe Sprinkle of Crossroads College follows:
Those who deny inerrancy have a different methodology in interpreting the Scripture and in finding the truth of God’s Word. Consider the following table which show steps in the interpretation process:
Evangelicals Who Affirm Inerrancy
Liberals Who Deny Inerrancy
Do Textual Criticism
Do Textual Criticism
Accept the Teaching as Truth from God
Ask if the Teaching is Really True
Accept What Subjectively seems True as Truth
The Analogy of Scripture
Since we believe that the Bible is inspired by God and 100% true and inerrant, it makes sense that when we are interpreting parts of the Scripture, we will use other parts of Scripture to help us do the interpretation. This is not “rocket surgery,” but is called:
Analogy of Scripture – This is the principle that the clear teaching of Scripture outside of a passage that we are studying should be used by us to inform our interpretation of the passage that we are studying.
This is also called a Dogmatic Approach, although the word “dogma” has gotten a bad rap in recent years.
dogma - a principle or set of principles laid down (by an authority) as incontrovertibly true.
Does Romans 3:23-24 Teach Universalism?
Romans 3:23-24 (NASB) "23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;"
Does James 2:21 Teach That We are Saved By Our Works?
James 2:21 (NASB) "21Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar?"
I think it is fairly clear what the basic strength of such an approach is, i.e., having truth to help us interpret ever more difficult Scriptures (given that we believe that there are no contradictions in Scripture).
Some drawbacks of the Analogy of Scripture (or the Dogmatic Approach):