Good cultural backgrounds helps us trust Scripture

Lots of skeptics today criticize the Bible, oblivious to the cultural setting that it was addressing. Instead of seeing how biblical texts improved values of their surrounding culture, skeptics condemn the Bible for not promoting twenty-first century values that (whether we agree with those values or not) no one had heard of in biblical times. When Christians read the Bible in an ahistorical way, ignoring the cultural settings that it originally addressed, we play into skeptics’ hands. Just as God communicated the divine message to people in their specific languages, God also communicated to them in concrete cultural settings. Recognizing those settings helps us reapply the Bible’s message more concretely and appropriately in our often different situations today. If you want to apply the Bible rightly, knowing the first situation helps you recognize what kinds of situations are and are not analogous today.

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