Interpreting John 3:16: How Do Readers’ Contexts Shape Their Understanding?

Regardless of upbringing, education, economic situation, or geographical location, most people in the so-called western world have seen or heard perhaps the most famous verse in the Bible: John 3:16. Yet, do they know the occasion or setting when it was written? Are they aware of the surrounding context of the verse—from the most immediate … Read more

Myth and Scripture: An Evangelical Perspective

The meaning of the term “myth” is heavily disputed, with several disciplines claiming it as a part of their domain of inquiry. As a result, there is great confusion regarding “myth”, leading some scholars to label it as nothing more than an ad hoc scholarly category, consisting of whatever meaning and content a given theorist … Read more

New Proposal of Historical Sociolinguistics for Biblical Studies

Over the last century, historical criticism, literary criticism, and social-scientific criticism have played a critical role in biblical studies. From methodological perspectives, these critical approaches can be categorized into two types of inquiries. The first inquiry views the biblical texts as windows to see the historical societies behind the Scripture (historical criticism and social-scientific criticism). … Read more

What is the Literal Sense? A Brief Historical Review and Then Proposal

The Christian tradition has historically affirmed the priority and foundational nature of the literal sense for interpretation. However, the literal sense is one of the most slippery phrases in the history of interpretation. To say that one interprets literally doesn’t say much about how one interprets. This paper will overview what modern people mean by … Read more

The Four Senses of Scripture: Recovering an Ancient Way of Reading for Today

Of late there has been much written on the hermeneutics of the church fathers, reviving the Great Tradition, the superiority of precritical exegesis, or the sensibilities of premodern interpreters. Fewer, however, have demonstrated precisely what this looks like. This is somewhat surprising because though diversity exists in premodern interpretation, the fourfold sense (or the quadriga) … Read more

The Necessity & Method of Distinguishing Myth, History & Divine Acts in Biblical Interpretation

There is considerable disagreement and controversy today within the evangelical academy regarding the nature of myth and the historical truthfulness of Scripture. While this disagreement surfaces from various scholars who affirm belief in the inerrancy of the biblical text, these scholars often employ interpretative assumptions and methodologies that undermine the historical truthfulness of Scripture and … Read more