OUTLINE OF INTERPRETATION METHODS
This outline of interpretation methods utilizes an objective method.
Subjectivity (personal interpretation) is not capable of obtaining truth from the Bible.
Truth is objective and only comes through divine revelation.
Our freedoms, free will, and choices have nothing to do with finding truth.
The goal of this book is to identify divine truths with absolute meanings.
Whether a passage contains literal or figurative language, there must be a single, objectively true meaning. For example, “the heart” is a figurative term, but it refers to a specific objective concept of our innermost being.
There is a physical realm (seen) and a heavenly realm (unseen).
The two realms meet in the spirit realm. For example, we on earth have a relationship with our heavenly Father because his Spirit dwells within us.
This leaves us with six total possibilities for interpretation of any passage:
- Literal language speaking of the physical realm
- Literal language speaking of the heavenly realm
- Literal language speaking of dual-realm interaction (spirit realm)
- Figurative language speaking of the physical realm
- Figurative language speaking of the heavenly realm
- Figurative language speaking of dual-realm interaction (spirit realm)
The realms interrelate in this fashion:
The Father is in the heavenly realm where the Son is now located.
The Son was in the earthly realm where we are located.
The Spirit “proceeds” from the Father and the Son in a dual-realm interaction (where heaven and earth meet).
Following his resurrection, the Son is at the “right hand” of the Father in the heavenly realm. He is the first dual-realm being, occasionally referred to in the Bible as the second Adam.
The earth and all believers will become part of this dual-realm merger after Christ’s second coming.
Prophetic passages are filled with terms like transformation, regeneration, restoration, redemption, and renewal. These may relate to the earth or to our own bodies.
This book seeks to determine which passages are clearly literal, or if figurative language is present, what realm and concept are being spoken of to determine literal interpretation?