The genre of a given passage will have an impact on the interpretive phase. This paper has outlined and briefly explained the three phase hermeneutic process of biblical interpretation. This kind of application error and abuse gives rise to sermons with titles like: “Slaying the Giants in Your Life: David and Goliath.” This kind of spiritualization completely avoids the fact that the events of the narrative are true and that they teach us about God’s nature, the praiseworthiness of faith, courage, and zeal for God’s honor. Simply recognizing that fact helps avoid many illicit and embarrassing assumptions during the interpretive process. The meaning is singular and completely dependent upon recognizing and understanding the literary, historical, and cultural context of the text. The language barrier can be overcome by studying the original biblical languages up until and beyond the point that one is considered an expert. It also has an impact on the use of interpretive techniques. A 2-sided bookmark that provides the basic steps of observation, interpretation, and application crucial for using the Inductive approach to hear God speaking through His Word. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. Maybe a passage is comparing and contrasting two things. Many biblical scholars have done this. startxref startxref 1237 16 %%EOF How Observation, Interpretation, and Application Relate to Each Other. %%EOF OBSERVATION-INTERPRETATION-APPLICATION. The first phase is the observation phase. Every single word should be observed and labeled as a noun, verb, adjective, preposition, article, etc … with as much specificity as possible. Mark those down as observations because it will be significant during the interpretation phase. Finally, the application phase evaluates the one objective meaning of the text and discovers the significance and impact, (if any), the texts has on the lives of modern readers. Another application pitfall comes from misjudging the difference between descriptive and prescriptive language. MOTIVATION (How can I move the audience to obey the text?) Osborne, Grant R. The Hermeneutical Spiral: A Comprehensive Introduction to Biblical Interpretation. 0000002142 00000 n 10 Observation and Application: James 4 …  This requires some mastery of English grammar and some access to the original biblical language. If there was the single word “bank” printed on a single otherwise blank piece of paper, then the only thing an interpreter can hope to accomplish is to discover a lexical-range of meanings. Some connecting words indicate temporal relationships such as: now, before, after. Where is this taking place? 0000001817 00000 n Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1984. Maybe a word or phrase is repeated often, (which is called stitching). 0000000016 00000 n You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.” NASB. However, if they are missed during the observation phase the interpretation phase will suffer, possibly even start down a trajectory toward a false conclusion about the meaning of a passage because the observations were insufficient. This is the foundation of the interpretive process. It has already been mentioned that chiastic literary structures are not common in modern western literature. There is no way to know during the observation phase which observations will prove to be pivotal in the interpretation phase, so there is no prejudged limit the number, specificity, or even the oddness of the observations one might make. Observations are made, collected, and organized for the purpose of future reference. ( Log Out / How do the clauses form phrases, and the phrases form sentences? x�b```b``if`�'x�(� (Share with a friend or for your Bible study group.) At the back it has a tail on which hangs a brush. Consider just a part of the verse James 3:6 “And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity …” Even the very first phrase “the tongue is a fire” clearly needs additional exploring into the meaning beyond the lexical meanings of “tongue” and “fire.” The verse begins with the word “and” indicating this is conjunctively linked to an ongoing discussion. The literary effect indicates that the power of human speech, made possible by the tongue, has the destructive potential of fire. 0000003790 00000 n If someone has mistaken a verb for a noun their error can be revealed and their interpretation corrected. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. x���1 0ð4��r\�aW&`�'MF[����!��� ��u ( Log Out / The Interpretation Phase: Discovering the Meaning. If biblical hermeneutics can be compared to panning for gold in a river, then the observation phase is the physical act of pulling up every rock, pebble, and particulate mater the prospector can catch in his sifter. The first step of the observation phase is to begin by reading the entire book in which the passage being interpreted is contained in one siting. Wheaton, Ill: Victor Books, 1974. The book of James is an epistle having a known author and known recipients. Theologically incompatible interpretations can be sorted through biblical theology, contextual analysis, and possibly even systematic theology. William W. Klein, Craig Blomberg, and Robert L. Hubbard. Legitimate applications can be derived from a four step method. The first phase is observation, in which the interpreter collates data concerning a given passage pertaining to the mechanical aspects of grammar, style, structure, word order, and any other aspect or characteristic observable in a given passage short of the passage’s meaning. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1970. 4. If two conflicting interpretations are so fundamentally different that the interpreters cannot agree on the nature of existence, then seek no higher court of appeals. Observation-Interpretation-Application (Which Bible is best for me?) The cow is a mammal. How many sentences are there? How many prepositions are there? A helpful phrase to remember during the interpretation process is to always ask yourself “what is the ‘therefore’ there for?” These connector words and phrases indicate relationships between sections and ideas that prove invaluable during the interpretation phase. Texts have one legitimate meaning, as surely as the word “bank” can only mean “the edge of a body of water” or “an institution for the preservation and clerical tracking of finances,” depending on the context, but not both.