I believe it is fair to say that 90% of professing Christians have no idea of about the overview and the theme of the Bible. The reason is, most pastors have not mastered it themselves.
The Bible must be rightly divided, and those divisions must be taught constantly if believers are to keep a text within its context. When right division and the context is ignored, you can make the Bible teach anything you desire. All that is required is to choose a doctrine, a concept, or a thought, and then hunt throughout the Bible for anything that will prop it up. It is said; a heresy is simply a truth misplaced.
True, all Scripture is profitable for doctrine, reproof, and correction. But, all Scripture cannot and must not be taught AS church doctrine; and the preacher or teacher should make it clear how he is using a passage. Otherwise, those listening to him will not be able to make the distinction required for the right division.
Why can’t church members read their Bible? One reason is, the pastor has not mastered these divisions himself. Thus, he cannot teach them to his congregation. Let me give you one example of the confusion that plagues believers; that example concerns the church.
Covenant Theology teaches that the church started with Adam and continues out into eternity. Baptist Briders teach that the church started with John the Baptist and was passed off to Jesus. A major portion of Christians believe it started in Acts two, at Pentecost. Some believers see its birth in mid-Acts, and finally, there are those who believe it started after Acts 28.
Many of the pastors who understand right divisions, also understand the wrath of the brethren, should they teach anything contrary to their denomination. They will find themselves put out of the Synagogue.
If you are going to be true to the Scriptures, you are going to be required to cast of much denominational theology. However, you will do so at great cost to yourself and your church. Theology and tradition are the creations of men. These two, blinded the Jews to their own Scriptures; sadly, it has done the same to many of God’s people today.
The theme of the Bible is about a kingdom. It is not about the church or Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. We must know the difference between prophecy and the church. The church is not Israel, nor is Israel the church. The pastor must stop mixing kingdom doctrine with church doctrine.
The command to study and rightly divide the Scriptures is found in the Pastoral Epistles. Therefore, the answer lies in the pulpit. If church members do not know how to read, divide, or apply the Scriptures properly, the pastor is failing in his duty. Pastor, learn all you can about right divisions of the Scriptures.
Pastor Ken Blue was born in Boswell, Ark. In 1955 he accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife Joyce were married in 1955. They have 5 children. He graduated from Midwestern Baptist Bible College in 1969 and started the Open Door Baptist Church in Lynnwood, Wa. where he pastored for 39 years. Because of health issues (ALS) he was forced to resign as pastor. It is his desire to continue to be used of God to help pastors and believers through this ministry.