Does praying and meditating on a passage ensure better interpretation?

Asked: Does praying and meditating on a passage ensure better interpretation?

Answer: Yes, praying and meditating on a passage does ensure a better interpretation of the Scripture. Here are some passages that apply to this very subject that comes to my mind:

  • Psalms 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever!
  • Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
  • Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.

The only foundation for one to properly interpret Scripture is being in tune spiritually with their Father. The believer cannot use mere intellectual knowledge to understand true religion. The beginning of wisdom is the only foundation in which one is to find true wisdom on. This foundation is the relationship that the believer has in communion with their Savior. To know God, and to walk in correct measure in interpreting the Scripture, is not only reading the Scriptures and using one’s intellectual knowledge, but is spending time with the Lord on a daily basis as a wise act so that mankind can know their Maker better. I would ask myself the same question that Charles Spurgeon asked in his commentary on the Psalms, “Where shall wisdom be found? Where is the place of understanding?”

Spurgeon answers, “He searches nature through, in quest of it, but cannot find it: he cannot purchase it Ophir, and its prices above rubies. At length he collects the primitive instruction of God to man, and there he finds it; to man said, behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.”

It is clear for the believer that he should not go to the text upon his own strength, his own mind, his own thought and his own will. In doing so, the believer will lose all illumination from the Spirit and will then base reason on his own perception and his own way of thinking. The believer should go to the text in fear but not in a fear that is scarce in its love for the Lord. The believer goes to the text because he is love with Christ, because he wants to know Christ and he wants to be able to commune with the Father, through Christ. This is why we worship God in prayer and in meditation and in careful obedience so that we may properly interpret the Scriptures to live a life, holy unto the Lord. This is why John Calvin states this on Psalms 111:10, “ In this passage, fear is not to be understood as referring to the first or elementary principles of piety, as in 1 John 4:18, but is comprehensive of all true godliness, or the worship of God.”


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