Monday, July 12, 2010
Biblical Interpretation 5
Allegorical interpretation is a dangerous method of interpretation that can and does result in improper conclusions. God’s Word has but one meaning. The allegorical method gives way to many interpretations of any given text. It is beneficial for one to study church history in order to see the heresies others have fallen into; in doing this the student is saved from serious error. Allegorizing is such an error and it is first seen among the Jews who interpreted the Septuagint. In their eyes, many texts which did not make sense to them were changed to say what they wanted them to say. It is logical to deduce from this the danger of such a system of interpretation. Dr. Talbot refers to this system of interpretation as “hermeneutical gymnastics” because you see all kinds of twists, flips, and the like. With allegorical interpretation the meaning lies in the mind of the interpreter not in the text. The Greeks where also known for their keen ability to allegorize; this in turn eventually infiltrated the church. Many would be interpreters fail in their endeavors because they allegorize the Scriptures. The student must be aware when scripture speaks of something as allegorical it says so, and it also interprets itself; as a result there is no guess work.