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How To Understand the Scriptures of the Christian Bible

Updated on April 26, 2012

Start at the Beginning

Everything from the banned books of the bible to history is important to understanding the scriptural text most refer to as the 'bible'.

If you're serious about understanding the Christian bible then it's imperative that you first understand scripture itself by knowing what it is and where it came from.

If you don't understand the origin, background, history, and culture of a body of people first, you can't possibly presume to understand what the meaning of certain things are.

We automatically project things through the eyes of our own background and culture when looking to understand someone or something and this is errant thinking.

Hebrew Scripture

Hebrew people are at the backdrop of the Christian bible. They were the ones who wrote the original scripture that was later translated in many different languages today. They still keep their own version of things while the rest of the world has it filtered through many years and different cultures and civilizations, and the rulers of their day.

Understanding that the Roman empire was the ruling force at the time of Christ, and Constantine was the ruler of the day when he decided to "unify" all the different factions of faiths and modes of worship that cropped up in his territory by combining sun worship and belief in Jesus, that gives us the off-course religion of today's Christian church.

Even the later cannonized, and current version of the bible, isn't all the scriptural text that was written or available back then. There are Hebrew writings, other books that were banned from being a part of the bible, and now the new Dead Sea scrolls that need to be looked at.

The Word LAW and the Sabbath in the Scriptures

The word LAW in the bible isn't even what most Christian people make out to be. The simple interpretation of it means "instruction" and so therefore was never "thrown out" any more than the 4th Commandment of the bible "Thou Shall remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it Holy".

The Sabbath day of worship was changed by the ruler Constantine and God implemented the Sabbath on a particular day (the 7th day) for a reason. He also gave the Feast days (see Lev 23) for specific reasons as well.

Christmas and Easter are really pagan holidays and rituals which simply have bits and pieces of the Hebrew belief of the risen Messiah mixed in. You simply can't mix Passover and Easter together, pick the pagan holiday's day of observance to celebrate, and then expect it to be just fine. It's an abomination and God says so in the scriptures. Why do you think this new observance is called Easter and not Passover?

Using J.P. Green's Interlinear Bible and the Strong's Concordance while looking at historical events as you look to understand the scriptures and the Christian bible are the best way for you to get started with understanding the scriptures.

After all, even the Gregorian calendar we follow today has a history and was created by civilizations over the course of time. Without understanding that either, you'll never know why God created the stars in the heavens as a permanent reckoning of time.

In conclusion, the things in this article alone should help get you started into digging a little deeper into the Christian bible and its Hebrew scriptures and history, because understanding the scriptures of the bible and the rituals that a person practices are the very foundation of a person's faith.


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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hi i am new to the whole spiritaul,Bible but do agree if you are to read the bible ,start from the beginning .the Sabath is the 7th day and only god can change it ,i agree 100% with you .if you want to follow the God,Christ and the Holy spirit then keep all the 10 Comandments and that includes the Sabath .

      I will start from the beginning .

      thank you yoou really put purpous in to my research.



    • brandonakelly profile image


      6 years ago from Wilmington, NC

      I personally enjoy using a Life Application Study Bible to help me understand scripture, it really helps to break things down and explain it much better; depending on which one you purchase of course!

    • EphremHagos profile image


      6 years ago from Addis Ababa

      In any case, the part that is inspired by the Holy Spirit (apart from the parts that are not) cannot be understood otherwise, i.e., directly and perpetually outsourced from Christ's death on the cross!

      (Rev. 5)

      This is the testimony of the gospel.

      (John 16: 5-15; 19: 30-37)

    • EphremHagos profile image


      6 years ago from Addis Ababa

      Kaloomba, many thanks!

      How I wish we were ALL "on the right track", in the same field and sown with the same select seed so we could bond irreversibly into "one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all mankind!"

      (Matt. 13: 11-12; Mark 4: 26-29; Eph. 4: 4-6)

      This can come true only for those who accept and obey the commandments in the gospel to be personally introduced to God's self-revelation in Christ's Spirit-active, perfect and diacritical death on the cross and taught thereby.

    • kaloomba profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      Though you are on the right track, you are stating only surface teachings.. Learn to study the scriptures and discover Yeshua, the Aleph Tav:

    • EphremHagos profile image


      6 years ago from Addis Ababa

      STRICTLY SPEAKING, all beneficiaries of the "new covenant" are to obey only the Spirit in time with Christ's infallible works of self-revelation in his death on the cross (Jer. 31: 31-34; Matt. 26: 26-29; 27: 50-56; 2 Cor. 3; Heb. 10: 19-25); which is also "the key" to the Kingdom of heaven (Matt. 16: 18-28; Luke 23: 40-43; Col. 2: 2-3; Rev. 5).

      This is the only foundation of sustainable faith for true worship of God "as he really is" transcending all religions (John 4: 21-26).

    • kaloomba profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      What does 1 Cor. 16:2 (regarding taking up a collection) have to do with Sabbath?

      Your lack of knowledge and understanding of the scriptures proves my point... That most Christians don't understand anything about the life and culture of the people who established the very foundation of their own beliefs (their Hebrew roots).

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      The Sabbath day of worship was changed by the ruler Constantine? Not! 1 Cor. 16:2.

    • kaloomba profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago

      Whew! That was a mouthful, Truthseeker...

      It's great you are opening your eyes to some things!

      It is important to always keep in mind that we do NOT try to understand or interpret the bible by today's Christian standard and culture, but interpret and gain understanding by looking at scripture through the eyes and culture of the original writers - the Hebrew!

    • profile image

      True Truthseeker 

      8 years ago

      Many Bible texts have been misinterpreted by many. For instance it has been shown repeatedly that much of what Jesus said was not understood by many, and many have misinterpreted His statements as recorded in the bible.

      Even the disciples have at times not fully understood some things that the Lord , Jesus Christ, has said.

      John 21 (King James Version)

      John 21

      23Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?

      You are encouraged to read the entire account to get a better understanding of what transpired.

      Now there has been an ongoing debate as to how John 1:1 is to be interpreted. Many have died gruesome deaths or lost their freedom sanctioned by the church, because they SEEK TRUTH as regards the TRUE identity of Jesus the Christ.

      An Historical Account of Two Notable Corruptions of Scripture is a dissertation by the English mathematician and scholar Sir Isaac Newton. First published in 1754, 27 years after his death, it reviewed all the textual evidence available from ancient sources on two disputed Bible passages: 1 John 5:7 and 1 Timothy 3:16.

      Newton did not publish these findings during his lifetime, likely due to the political climate. Those who wrote against the doctrine of the Trinity were subject to persecution in England. As late as 1698 the Act for the Suppression of Blasphemy and Profaneness made it an offense to deny one of the persons of the Trinity to be God, punishable with loss of office, employment and profit on the first occasion, and imprisonment for a repetition. Newton's friend William Whiston (translator of the works of Josephus) lost his professorship at Cambridge for this reason in 1711. In 1693 a pamphlet attacking the Trinity was burned by order of the House of Lords, and the next year its printer and author were prosecuted. In 1697 Thomas Aikenhead, an eighteen-year-old student charged with denying the Trinity, was hanged at Edinburgh, Scotland

      Since we are not eyewitnesses of events as they occurred nearly two thousand years ago [when the “New Testament” was recorded] , then we need to utilize ALL information at our disposal.

      The very person who was inspired to write the Epistle that bears his name, John, says at John 20:31 according to the KJV.

      John 20:31 (King James Version)

      31But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

      The same John who penned the Epistle called John, also penned the book of Revelation.

      Revelation 1:6 (King James Version)

      6And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

      And again:

      Revelation 3:1 (King James Version)

      Revelation 3

      1And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.

      9Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

      Please NOTE, that worship as used here MUST be an incorrect rendering.

      Revelation 3:9 (Contemporary English Version)

      9Now you will see what I will do with those people who belong to Satan's group. They claim to be Jews, but they are liars. I will make them come and kneel down at your feet. Then they will know that I love you.

      Revelation 3:9 (Young's Literal Translation)

      9lo, I make of the synagogue of the Adversary those saying themselves to be Jews, and are not, but do lie; lo, I will make them that they may come and bow before thy feet, and may know that I loved thee.


      Revelation 3 (King James Version)

      11Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.

      12Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

      13He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

      14And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

      15I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.

      Note please, that even as a glorified spirit Being, Jesus, the Word, refers to his God, JEHOVAH.

      The apostle Paul also, was and continues to be misunderstood.

      2 Peter 3: 14 - 17 reads:

      Hence, beloved ones, since you are awaiting these things, do your utmost to be found finally by him spotless and unblemished and in peace. Furthermore, consider the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul according to the wisdom given him also wrote you speaking about these as he does also in all [his] letters. In them, however, are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unsteady are twisting, as [they do] also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. You, therefore, beloved ones, having this advance knowledge, be on your guard that you may not be led away with them by the error of the law-defying people and fall from your own steadfastness.

    • Unchained Grace profile image

      Unchained Grace 

      8 years ago from Baltimore, MD

      Kaloomba, I as well have been fortunate in that I have been blessed to be working directly with individuals who have been able to provide me with a unique insight into people such as Rosa Parks, Frederick Douglass, Justice Thurgood Marshall and of course Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

      Baltimore, MD meant something to each of the above. As a white man who grew up in Queens, NYC I didn't have the input nor opportunity I have now. Nor could I readily cross the line over. Summarily, my limited interpretation of their history came to be enlightened. I couldn't see it as I was blinded to it. However, like Blind Bartimaeus (Mk 10:46-52) my eyes were opened and I could see!

      I've had the good fortune to meet many in my life thus far who were integral in the culture of their people and I thank God for the opportunities. Each one of them.

      I thank you for many things, Kaloomba and I consider myself highly blessed to have been directed to this Hub and to meet you. Thank you for such an eye opening Hub.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      At the end of the day and reading a never ending book we all take from the Word what we are willing to receive. God speaks to us all in different ways.

      That's what I love about the Word it brings us all together as beleivers and allows us to share openly and freely.

      Great Hub...

      Many Blessings

    • kaloomba profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Thank you for your comment, DeBorrah. You're right about an intimate relationship.

      For each of us to develop a truly close, personal and intimate relationship with Jesus involves getting to know and understand Him by not only reading His words, but really understanding His culture and background during the time that He spoke them and carried them out.

    • DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

      DeBorrah K Ogans 

      9 years ago


      Wonderful article!

      As a believer, I know it is so very important to know the Lords' Word. As you diligently do this He will write His laws upon your heart! This is why one must have an ongoing intimate personal relationship with JESUS CHRIST...

      This is how our FAITH and TRUST are developed!

      Very well presented!


    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Good article.. It only makes sense that a person should ALWAYS consider the culture and rituals of the Hebrew people whenever attempting to interpret scripture for understanding. (After all, THEY wrote it!)

    • kaloomba profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Thanks for you comment and at least your thinking. However, your arguments are the same as always from typical (and blinded) Christians, which is exactly my point.

      So, until a person does his research on all the things you mentioned (which I have done and continue to do) and UNDERSTANDS their true meaning they will continue to make these same baseless arguments as you again and again.

      One simple example would be just on the statement 'the first day of the week'... It's not what you and I would normally think of because it isn't 'Sunday' but to do with the day after a Sabbath (which is not always the seventh day either because it's also a holy day). Do you know the difference between the Jewish calendar and the Gregorian one (that we follow)?

      I could show you corrections to each argument you made but you simply need to study this yourself because you would just continue to argue your points from a wrong perspective (American mind sets and culture and not the Hebrew and Jewish).

      My suggestion to you is to study Jewish tradition and Hebrew culture before using these arguments again. Don't feel bad, I was angry at first too when I began to discover the truth (but the truth sets us free!).

    • Make  Money profile image

      Make Money 

      9 years ago from Ontario

      "Why do you think this new observance is called Easter and not Passover?" It's just called Easter in German dialects like English. Latin - Pascha, Spanish - la Pascua, Italian - Pasqua, Portuguese - Páscoa, Romanian - Pa?ti, French - Pâques and so on.

      Isaiah 1:13 - God begins to reveal His displeasure with the Sabbath.

      Matt. 28:1; Mark 16:2,9; John 20:1,19- the Gospel writers purposely reveal Jesus' resurrection and appearances were on Sunday. This is because Sunday had now become the most important day in the life of the Church.

      Acts 20:7 - this text shows the apostolic tradition of gathering together to celebrate the Eucharist on Sunday, the "first day of the week." Luke documents the principle worship was on Sunday because this was one of the departures from the Jewish form of worship.

      1 Cor. 16:2 - Paul instructs the Corinthians to make contributions to the churches "on the first day of the week," which is Sunday. This is because the primary day of Christian worship is Sunday.

      Col. 2:16-17 - Paul teaches that the Sabbath was only a shadow of what was fulfilled in Christ, and says "let no one pass judgment any more over a Sabbath."

      2 Thess. 2:15 - we are to hold fast to apostolic tradition, whether it is oral or written. The 2,000 year-old tradition of the Church is that the apostles changed the Sabbath day of worship from Saturday to Sunday.

      Heb. 4:8-9 - regarding the day of rest, if Joshua had given rest, God would not later speak of "another day," which is Sunday, the new Sabbath. Sunday is the first day of the week and the first day of the new creation brought about by our Lord's resurrection, which was on Sunday.

      Heb. 7:12 - when there is a change in the priesthood, there is a change in the law as well. Because we have a new Priest and a new sacrifice, we also have a new day of worship, which is Sunday.

      Rev 1:10 - John specifically points out that he witnesses the heavenly Eucharistic liturgy on Sunday, the Lord's day, the new day of rest in Christ.

      Matt. 16:19; 18:18 - whatever the Church binds on earth is bound in heaven. Since the resurrection, Mass has been principally celebrated on Sunday.


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