Question on why studying hermeneutics is importantPosted: September 3, 2008
I am either often asked questions (that I seem to have no idea upon) that I am to answer either for fellow students, classes, or something to do with something in seminary. So, why not answer them on the blog? I will, so from now on, when a student ask me a question, or a professor I will place the question and my response for the world to see. I will admit at times even though I am asked, or have to study, or write answers to questions I feel as if I simply stupid. So therefore, do not think that you are going to read some intense and profound answers, but only simple and easy to read thoughts of a redneck seminarian.
Dr. Bilkes: Why would anyone need to study hermeneutics? Why not just read the Bible?
Dewalt: First off I would start by saying, studying hermeneutics is more necessary then those who just read the bible. Knowing how you read books, articles, blogs, works, and newspapers all make the reader have a hermeneutic, right? If a hermeneutic is the study of the locus of meaning and the principles of interpretation then everyone must have one. Now, the question remains to what may their hermeneutics be or consists of? Studying hermeneutics gives the individual a way of looking, knowing, and seeing the importance of properly reading information so that they can interpret the words read correctly.
Now as far as in, “why not just read the Bible?” My answer is this… I can read words all day long, I can read books, blogs and papers from fellow students however I ALREADY have some type of hermeneutic if I can interpret the writing, right? Yes, no matter who the person may be, they have a hermeneutic if they can read. The question that I believe must be asked, is what is their hermeneutic? Just reading the bible without having a biblical gospel-centered hermeneutic just allows mankind to interpret the Scriptures in a way they think is best or can fit into their own system of man-centeredness.
So in answering the questions quickly and easily in one sentence a piece…
Why would anyone need to study hermeneutics? To see, know, learn a proper Gospel-centered way of studying the bible so that their interpretation is that of what God intended.
Why not just read the Bible? Because without knowing how to, what is the sense of why to?