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grasping-week6

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Published on December 23, 2008

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Slide 1: GRASPING GOD’S WORD A Hands-On Approach to Reading, Interpreting, and Applying the Bible (Winter-Spring 2004) Powerpoint Presentation Prepared by Rev. Joseph C. Parker, Jr., Esq., D. Min. Senior Pastor March 31, 2004 THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT ARE YOU WILLING TO MAKE THE PERSONAL INVESTMENT? Why bother with Historical-Cultural Context? God spoke through human writers. The God-chosen human writers addressed REAL-LIFE needs of REAL people at a particular TIME in a particular CULTURE. We have eternal principles that apply eternally to every culture. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT ARE YOU WILLING TO MAKE THE PERSONAL INVESTMENT? God spoke to specific people living in specific places, speaking specific languages, who lived a particular way of life. Before we received God’s word, it was God’s word to others. Understand the Scripture’s meaning in its original “foreign” context and THEN apply it to our lives. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT ARE YOU WILLING TO MAKE THE PERSONAL INVESTMENT? Our interpretation of Scripture must be consistent with the historical-cultural context of that Scripture. Would your interpretation make sense back then? If not, you probably need to dump it and start over again! What did the Scripture mean in the hometown? Then ask – What does in mean in our town? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL BOOK: What was the WRITER’S background? From where did the WRITER come? When does the WRITER write? What was happening “historically” at the time of the writing? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL BOOK: To whom was the writing addressed? What were the general circumstances of the recipients of the writing? What situation was being addressed in the writing? What occasion was being addressed in the writing? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL BOOK: What was happening socially to the writing’s recipients? What was happening religiously to the writing’s recipients? What was happening politically to the writing’s recipients? What was happening economically to the writing’s recipients? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL BOOK: What do you know about the relevant geography in the book? What do you know about the topography in the book? What do you know about the social customs? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL PASSAGE: ANSWER THE SAME QUESTIONS OF THIS PASSAGE THAT YOU ASKED OF THE BOOK AS A WHOLE. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT IS HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT? WITH REGARD TO THE BIBLICAL PASSAGE: Social issues? Political issues? Religious issues? Economic issues? Social Customs? Geography? Topography? THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT DANGERS WITH STUDYING BIBLICAL BACKGROUND? Watch out for inaccurate background information! Do not elevate the biblical background above the meaning of the text! Do not become a reservoir of ancient facts! Do not assume you do not need the background! THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? An important form of compulsory labor in which part of the population legally owned other human beings as property. Practiced in all cultures relevant to the writing of the documents of the New Testament. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Mediterranean consensus: “Slavery as the right to use another man at pleasure, like a piece of property or a domestic animal.” THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Racial factors played no role. Education was greatly encouraged (some slaves were better educated than their owners) and enhanced their value. Many slaves carried out sensitive and highly responsible social functions. Slaves could own property, including other slaves. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Their religious and cultural traditions were the same as those of the freeborn. No laws prohibited public assembly of slaves. The majority of urban and domestic slaves could legitimately anticipate being emancipated by the age of 30. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? A slave had no legal kin in Greek and Roman law. The potential freedom of the enslaved person varied as existed among the three traditions – Jewish, Greek, and Roman. THEREFORE, it is essential to investigate the specific legal-social-philosophical background of each New Testament passage. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Greek tradition – tended to regard an enslaved person as inferior by nature and thus fortunate to have a Greek master. Jewish tradition – any enslavement of Jews by Jews was improper because THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Roman tradition – slaves were rigorously regarded in much legislation as things, but also regularly treated as free human beings and normally granted Roman citizenship when set free, as happened regularly. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Slaves’ individual honor, social status, and economic opportunities were entirely dependent on the status of their respective owners. Slaves were not necessarily at the bottom of the social-economic pyramid. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT SLAVERY DURING NEW TESTAMENT TIMES? Prior to the 1st century, a person became a slave as a prisoner of war and as a person kidnapped by pirates. By the 1st century, a person became a slave by self-sale, sale of free-born children, the raising of foundlings, and debt-bondage. Foundlings – Throwing away newborn infants was a frequently used means of post-birth control; when such infants were found alive, they could be raised as slaves. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT LAODICEA? Founded by Seleucid king Antiochus II and named in honor of his wife, Laodice. Zeus was the chief god and they also consulted the oracle of Apollo at Klaros in Ionia. In 129 BC it came under Roman control. A center of financial and banking operations A place where gladiatorial shows were to be seen (demonstrates economic prosperity) THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT LAODICEA? About 150 miles due east of Ephesus. The great Roman road stretching to the inland of Asia from the coast at Ephesus ran straight through its center. Therefore, it was an important center of trade and communication. A special eyesalve and ear ointments were either manufactured or distributed there. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT LAODICEA? One scholar notes that it is difficult to describe because no one thing stands out. There were no excesses or notable achievements to distinguish it. It was a city with a people who had learned to compromise and accommodate themselves to the needs and wishes of others. They did not zealously stand for anything. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE CHURCH AT LAODICEA? Materially affluent and self-sufficient, it was spiritually “wretched, pitiable, poor, blind and naked.” The city’s economic prosperity, eye ointment, and wool could coud do nothing to help this spiritual destitution. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT LAODICEA? Suffered severely from earthquakes, but rebuilt from its own resources without state assistance. Noted for its textile products. Had a chief medical center. THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT : THE HISTORICAL-CULTURAL CONTEXT INTERNET BIBLICAL RESEARCH RESOURCES www.crosswalk.com   www.blueletterbible.org   www.bju.edu/bible/index.html   www.bible.gospelcom.net/bible  www.eliyah.com/lexicon.html

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