Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 9, 1958

Can We Understand The Bible Alike?

Dudley Ross Spears, Cookeville, Tennessee

True understanding of the Bible is something that all of us should desire. If we would try to understand the things that are in the Bible that are vital to our soul's salvation, there would be no religious chaos or division. Ridding the world of religious strife and contention would greatly impede the progress of infidelity and skepticism. None will deny that religious division and strife is one of the prominent factors in the breeding of infidelity. Therefore, it behooves everyone who really professes belief in Christ and fidelity in the Bible to honestly understand the Bible.

The word understand' is defined as: "To get or perceive the meaning of." If every individual who ever reads the Bible would "get or perceive the meaning of" any given passage of scripture, all would understand the passage alike. We would all get the same meaning from it. We might misunderstand the passage of scripture and get different meanings from it, but it would be contrary to both logic and common sense to think that we could all understand the passage and get different meanings from it.

Often people quote 2 Peter 1:20 as proof that we are not supposed to understand the Bible. Yet isn't it peculiar that we can understand a passage that teaches us we cannot understand the Bible? Astounding! If we can get the meaning of that passage, why not others? What kind of a rule is it that says we can understand a passage that teaches us we cannot understand the Bible? It is ridiculous indeed! Not only that, but also it is an insult to the integrity of both God and Christ that they left us with an unintelligible volume that we cannot understand.

The Apostle Paul expressed confidence in the word. "And now brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified" (Acts 20:32). Paul did not leave a sectarian interpretation of the word — he left the word itself. This word, he declared, was able to accomplish much in spiritual edification. This could not have been said of a word that could not have been understood by all who received it. If they could not have understood the word left by Paul, division would have resulted by someone forcing their human judgment on others. As they simply took the word itself and understood it, they were united more firmly. Leaving off sectarian creeds and opinions will greatly aid us in understanding the Bible alike.

The plan of salvation is plain and definite. There will be no excuse when we stand before the Almighty Judge and are called upon to deliver an account for the "deeds done in the body." None will have the effrontery to make the whimpering excuse to the Lord that, "I just couldn't see it that way." That day will remove all our impious attitudes toward the divine and holy word of Almighty God.

Dear reader, make the Bible and the Bible only your guide from this world to that which is to come. If you have never rendered obedience to the terms of the gospel, do so today. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and obey His will by repenting of your sins and being immersed in water for the remission of them (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38). Any one can understand this. This is the only safe course for you to follow and may the Lord help you to do so before it is too late.