Posts Tagged ‘scripture’

Bible TextFor an example of how we can easily misinterpret, and, in turn, misuse scripture, let’s look at the quote from Joel 2:28 – 29 found in Acts chapter 2.

28 “And afterward,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your old men will dream dreams,
your young men will see visions.
29 Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days.” (NIV)

When you read this passage, do you organize the verses into boxes and build formulas? If so, then this is how it would be interpreted:

[Only] sons and daughters will prophesy, [only] old men will dream dreams, and [only] young men will see visions.

Or

Sons and daughters will [only] prophesy, old men will [only] dream dreams, and young men will [only] see visions.

Or

[Only] sons and daughters will [only] prophesy, [only] old men will [only] dream dreams, and [only] young men will [only] see visions.

Knowing how Christians enjoy their formulas, we could easily create three denominations from these. But, are any of the above how God intended us to understand this passage? Or, did this passage simply include examples, written in a poetic way to say what the introduction in verse 28 and the conclusion in verse 29 were saying; in a nutshell, that He will pour His Spirit out on everyone and that everyone will be able to do these things regardless of age or gender.

If you’re interested, I have a related post entitled Interpreting Scripture Correctly on our blog, Real Church Life.

Tina