So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading. Nehemiah 8:8
The Holy Bible is the verbally inspired Word of GOD. There are no insignificant words therein nor are there any mistakes in the words that fell from the pen of those men whom the LORD was pleased to inspire to write them. Thus we read that “they read in the book in the law of GOD distinctly.” Yet these scriptures must not be looked at as a collection of individual words, but rather as an anthology of truth which is set forth in specific words.
Often men become enamored with interpreting the scriptures by focusing on particular words (or groups of words) rather than looking at how those words are used in their proper context. Most false prophets and their cultic followers delight in setting forth many “proof texts” which seem to support their various theories and doctrines, while ignoring the overall message of the scriptures in general and the context in which their particular “doctrine” is supposedly supported.
The Bible is a book which can be read by everyone. Yet it is a book whose message and meaning cannot be deciphered or understood by anyone apart from a revelation of its truth applied by the HOLY SPIRIT who is the sole GUIDE into all of the truth that is recorded therein. There are no “experts” in Biblical interpretation. Nor are there any who have gained any expertise, in the understanding of the scriptures, through human endeavor or institutions of higher learning devoted to the pursuit of such knowledge.
While one may become proficient in the ways of religion and the doctrines and practices of men, by such an education; only those who are taught by the HOLY GHOST can ever understand the “sense” of the scriptures regardless of the degree of their carnal education or the lack thereof. The evidence of this is seen in the amazement of the wise and learned “scholars” when confronted by some ignorant fishermen. “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts4:13)
Many so called “preacher’s” like to give their hearers the notion that the scriptures can only be understood in the light of their own particular brand of teaching. Diotrephes, (see III John) was just such a man, and he has borne many sons down through the centuries. Paul warned the Ephesian elders of just such an error when he said, “Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” (Acts 20:30) Any use of the Word of GOD, which is not expressly and simply for the purpose of glorifying JESUS CHRIST alone, is a perversion of the “sense” of the scriptures. When men preach for the purpose of gathering (or keeping, for that matter) unto themselves a following, they have perverted that “sense” and have sought to be “lords over GOD’s heritage” rather than examples thereunto. (see I Peter 5:3)
When the Law was read by Nehemiah and the other men whom the LORD prepared for this purpose, they gave the “sense” (or meaning) of it as they were enabled by the SPIRIT of GOD. They did not promote any pet doctrines nor did they demand any obeisance from their hearers but they merely expounded the Word as the LORD gave them understanding which they passed on to those under the sound of their voice. They did not invent any new doctrine but sought to declare the whole counsel of GOD as it was written. They did not encourage or in anywise promote any activity of the flesh nor did they seek to manipulate their hearers by their emotional oratory. They declared the “sense” which was given to them and left the rest in the hands of HIM who gave it.
In order to grasp the “sense” of any scripture it is necessary that a man be shown what the entire theme of the Holy Scriptures as a whole is. Apart from this revelation, those who seek to declare or understand the “sense” of any particular scripture will surely miss the mark, and wind up either perverting the message or going off into vain jangling of one sort or another.
The SUM and SUBSTANCE of the scriptures is the revelation of the glory of JESUS CHRIST as the KING of kings and LORD of lords. “And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.” (Luke 24:44) Included in this declaration is the preaching of the redemptive work of JESUS CHRIST even as Paul said, “For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” (1Cor 2:2) Regardless of what else a man may claim to know or preach, if this is not the very fiber of his understanding, he has missed the “sense” of the Book that he claims to hold as his authority.
The Old Testament prophets could not grasp this totality, even though they “saw it afar off”. “But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.” (Mat 13:16-
“God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.” (Heb 11:40)
Paul makes the totality of this present revelation manifest when he said, “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.” (Rom 1:1-
This is “that day” of salvation which was promised, even the “times of refreshing” and the “times of restitution of all things”. There is no other “age” in which HE has manifested that ONE who is the “fullness of the GODHEAD bodily”. “To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Eph 3:10-
In order to understand the “sense” of any scripture a man must be given eyes to see the Exalted CHRIST, the REDEEMER of GOD’s elect. mam