Waiting for the Groom's Return
7 Keys to Unlocking the Bible | Key 1: Historical and Cultural Criticism
(Waiting for the Groom’s Return)
January 2, 2022
1. What is the danger of interpreting a passage of scripture without understanding its historical setting? What is the danger of interpreting scripture by understanding it only by its historical setting?
2. What relationship do:
a) the doctrine of inspiration and
b) the doctrine of illumination
have with the principles of hermeneutics (biblical interpretation)?
3. Read Matthew 25:1-13. What sounds familiar to you in this parable, and what seems odd or difficult to understand given cultural differences between then and now?
4. Jesus likens the kingdom of heaven with the marriage covenant. Review from Sunday’s
message: what were the steps taken in marriage in Jewish tradition during Jesus’ day?
Compare and contrast the marriage process in ancient Jewish tradition and the engagement and marriage process in today’s culture. How is this helpful in better understanding this parable?
5. Identify and discuss other passages of scripture where it is important to understand the historical and cultural setting.
6. What application(s) can you draw from this parable?
7. How will the study of this passage equip you to be prepared and ready for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ? How will you live differently this week in light of this study?
Helpful resources for better understanding biblical history and culture:
- Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes, Kenneth Bailey
- Old Testament Speaks, Samuel Shultz
- New Testament History, Ben Witherington III
- New Testament Survey, Robert Gromacki