When we read the Bible, we intuitively get its meaning. If we read a story about Abraham, we know that characters move through a story until its conclusion. If we read Proverbs, we know that we read wise sayings.
Yet our intuition mostly comes by way of basic education: we learned how to read and understand stories. So we apply what we’ve learned in school and in life to the Bible. And we attend a church where we hear the Bible preached. For that reason, we also have learned how to apply the Bible to our lives.
What we call intuition in large part derives from experience and education. And so it is worth considering how we get meaning from the Bible since we all bring something to the text. The question should be: are we bringing beneficial assumptions when we read it?
Here are four main ways that I see us reading Scripture to grasp its meaning. By looking at each, we can grow in our awareness of how we read the Bible and hopefully become more skilled at reading Scripture through this knowledge.