Objective Biblical Truth is defined as an interpretation of Scripture that is universally valid, absolutely true, and unassailably correct. Interpreting scripture is known as the study of hermeneutics but scholars maintain three principles which are, themselves, presumed reasonable paving the way to a true understanding of scripture:
- All interpretations of scripture are biased. We filter our understanding of the message of scripture through our understanding of life, of culture, of personal experience, and of education.
- There is no understanding of scripture other than such that is mediated by this bias. All interpretation of scripture is in fact in part subjective. Most Christians accept without question denominational distinctives as full gospel even though these teachings are designed to distinguish one church from another—divide and not unite.
- But, and this is important to note, bias is changeable by a continued study of the Biblical text. Through continuous contact with God’s Word either through devotional reading or personal study true believers (and not just church attenders) develop a life changing affection for the Word. They experience what they are studying because it is the responsibility of the Spirit to guide believers [John 16:13] into all objective truth, truth that is “universally valid, absolutely true, and unassailably correct.”
It is this third point that supports my contention that there is an objective truth to learn which God is sharing through the Spirit’s ministry with all His church, every believer, who prayerfully and studiously pursues it [Jeremiah 3:15; Luke 1:77; John 16:8-15]. But this is a process since the Word of God frequently confronts personal bias which through humility can be challenged and overcome [John 8:32].
It is called the “hermeneutical spiral” which is actively changing lives in every open Bible study not assembled to promote a set of doctrines but open to discuss and understand the text. Granted, some scriptures seem more culturally significant than eternally meaningful; for example, when Jesus sent His disciples out by twos without a purse or an extra pair of shoes [Mark 6:8; Luke 10:4]. Later, the Savior condescended to even carrying weapons [Luke 22:36] which probably is not related to their mission to spread the news of the coming Kingdom. Many labor through the prophets which seem boringly and woefully repetitious and some of the Psalms make more sense to octogenarians than the youth. But these are all “The Scriptures.”
The Spirit is teaching His church and using each to minister this truth to the others, but it requires a dedicated commitment and hunger to know God, accompanied by a lifestyle of prayer. When we come together this way opening the scriptures is an adventure into a more objective revelation of God’s Word because it not only makes “head” sense but “heart” sense, as well.
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 2 Timothy 3:16 NLT
Do we really want to know what the Lord says to us in His Word? Ask His People! They who are learning to live the message are more equipped to share it with others than any person of “letters.”