Presuppositions and The Bible

By Hollis Miller

Jesus believed that men who willingly listened to Him were able to understand His teaching. On more than one occasion He said: "He that has ears to hear, let him hear." What else could Jesus have meant than that those who would listen to Him would be able to understand? Yet, many failed to understand because their minds were closed by presuppositions.As was true during the earthly ministry of Jesus, so it is today. Presuppositions often keep individuals from understanding the Scriptures.

One who approaches the Bible under the guidance of Calvinism will not be able to understand the biblical teaching that God would have all men to be saved. Such passages as 1 Timothy 2:4, Hebrews 2:9, and 2 Peter 3:9, which teach that God would have all men to be saved, will be given a different slant from what they "seem" to be saying.

The Jews crucified Jesus because their presuppositions about the nature of the Messiah to come were not met by the Messiah that came (John 1:11). The philosophers at Athens did not listen to Paul very long because of their presupposition that one cannot rise from the dead (Acts 17:32).

So long as one presupposes that salvation is by faith only, the biblical teaching about baptism will not be understood. Should the presupposition that many faiths can save reign dominant in one's thinking, the New Testament teaching that there is only one saving faith will not be comprehended (Ephesians 4:5; Acts 4:12). The presupposition that the New Testament is culturally affected will lead one into a more liberal view of its teaching than would otherwise be the case.

When one approaches the Bible, all presuppositions need to be laid aside.

The Word of God, which is intended to lead mankind into truth, cannot instruct one as it should so long as one "knows" before investigating what the biblical text says.

Dear reader, let the Word of God, and not presuppositions, guide you.

Hollis Miller is an evangelist living in Murray, Kentucky, U.S.A.
(Emphasis by FG)
"Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."
"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man."
"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
"He came unto his own, and his own received him not."
"And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter."
"One Lord, one faith, one baptism,"
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."