Q. I was wondering if you could answer a question for me, please? Are there any Bible passages that teach us about exactly who can interpret the Bible? Or if the Bible in any way authorizes interpretation?
A. The Bible is designed to interpret itself, and in effect Acts 17:11 says we shouldn’t take anyone else’s word for what it says. Instead we should search the Scriptures ourselves to see if what we’re being told is true. In John 16:13 Jesus said one function of the Holy Spirit is to guide us into all truth. When we learn to listen to His guidance He will reveal the truth of God’s word to us.
Sadly, some people take Bible verses out of context to support their predetermined position instead of reading the Bible as it’s written to see what the correct position is. The thing to look for in any person’s opinion on a passage of Scripture is whether he/she is being true to the context or intent of the passage while providing supporting Scripture references that confirm the accuracy of their interpretation.
When someone provides confirming references it makes our search easier and allows us to decide from our own study if the interpreter’s opinion is accurate or not.
The Bible is the most important document mankind has ever been given, and ultimately we are all responsible to discover for ourselves what it says.
“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105).