"Daily frame me more and more into the likeness of Thy Son, Jesus Christ." - George Washington

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

End of the first month

Oh my, I can't think of a time that I have been this busy since high school, what with nannying, teaching art lessons, swing dancing/competition, and a church plant. Also working on various illustrating projects, and the hermeneutics class of course. Not to mention TeenPact is coming up...

But I'm still chugging along with the class! The hard part isn't watching the lectures (I've watched 7 out of 40-something), but completing the reading assignments so that I can finish the quizzes and move on to the next segment. (It's work-at-your-own-pace, remember?)

And today is a snow day! So - wonder of wonders - I get to stay home, and dive into those projects like reading and illustrating. It is so good to be home, and to have so much free time to use to catch up. I don't want to waste much more of it on the computer, really.

As far as the hermeneutics class goes, I've been almost overloaded with methods, and tips, and tricks of the trade, what to look for, etc... Dr. Akin keeps reminding the class that he is just throwing all the puzzle pieces out so we can piece them together later on.

To boil all of it down, good hermeneutics is in three steps:

Observation: learning to see what's in the text. Looking deeper, digging deeper. Using different reading techniques to notice different things. Reading patiently, over and over, reading prayerfully, imaginatively, thoroughly. Asking who? what? why? when? where? how? All that I have read thus far in Living by the Book addresses ways to observe what is in the text. Track the verbs, they are action words.

Interpretation: What does the text say? What is the author's intent? What is the context? What Peter calls "rightly dividing the Word of truth". What is the real meaning of the text - the objective meaning that doesn't change, versus the significance you might want to pull from it? What is the principle that transcends culture and time, that is true any time, any place, under any circumstance?

Application: The humbling part - how do I apply this correctly to my life? What do I learn about God from this text? What should I learn about myself? Scripture should be studied with the intent of changing our own lives. Scripture is living and active, sharper than a sword, dividing your thoughts and motives.

^ Nutshell version of lots of notes, right there.

I'll keep posting! Happy snow day!


  1. Through what institution are you taking this hermeneutics class? And if it is not too much to ask how much did it cost (including books)?

    1. It's from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, my parents' pastor recommended the class. It's called a MOOC, a massive open online course, so it is entirely free and work at your own pace.

      I'm picky, but this school seems pretty solid, and Dr. Akin who teaches the class, and has for many years, is a discerning, truth upholding man. I've not yet found anything to disagree with. And he stands firmly on the authority of the word of God.

      As for the books, I bought them all from for less than fifty dollars total.

      Howard and William Hendricks, Living By The Book: The Art and Science of Reading the Bible. Revised.
      Chicago: Moody, 2007

      James D. Hernando, Dictionary of Hermeneutics.
      Springfield: Gospel Pub. House, 2005

      Robert L. Plummer, 40 Questions About Interpreting The Bible.
      Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2010

  2. That is awesome. I might have to make it a summer project.