Question: Can the Bible be understood by the average
person today? Yes, the Bible can be understood by the average
person today. Most of the Bible is easy to understand. Some of it is
harder, and will take more study to fully understand, and probably no one
understands all the Bible perfectly. God keeps the challenge to
all of us, even to the most intelligent, to keep on studying His Word, not only
to fully understand all the truth it reveals, but also to keep us from
forgetting that which we have already learned from it. We do not graduate
from the need of Bible study.
Paul wrote, "But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by
his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in
Christ" (2 Cor. 11:3). It was a simple command, "Of every
tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the
knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it
you shall surely die" (Gen. 2:17). Eve understood the
command (Gen. 2:9; 3:2,3). She did not need some special revelation
to tell her the meaning of what God had said. God gave to her and Adam the
ability to understand Him. But the serpent corrupted God's word, put his
own spin on God's command and said, "You will not surely die." (v.4),
and Adam and Eve disobeyed God's Word. Misunderstanding God's Word today
is still partly caused by man's desire to do what he wants to do,
rather than to believe and obey God. "Therefore do not be
unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is." (Eph.
5:17). Surely, God, who created man, and knows him well, did not
command man to understand something he could not understand. The Holy
Spirit revealed to the apostles and prophets of the New Testament
the way for man's salvation, and Paul referred to this in Ephesians 3:3,4:
"how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I wrote before
in a few words, by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the
mystery of Christ". It was a mystery to the Old Testament prophets how God
was going to save man, but it was revealed in the New Testament, and man can
now understand it.
Jesus taught in one of His parables (Matt.13:23), that "he who received
seed on the good ground is he who hears the word of God and understands
it...", and in so doing he bears much fruit. He had a "noble and good
heart" (Luke 8:15, nkj). Developing a good, honest
heart to obey God has something to do with a person's understanding of
God's Word. (See John 7:17). Satan is in the business of hardening
people's heart by the "deceitfulness of sin" (Heb. 3:13; See also Matt.
13:21,22). Let's study and restudy God's Word so we will not misunderstand it.
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