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2 Peter 1:20: Knowing This First Of All, That No Prophecy Of Scripture Comes From Someone's Own Interpretation.

2 Peter 1:20
[20] Knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. (ESV)
Those who handle Scripture need to be so careful. Those who preach and teach have great influence over the ones to whom they are giving instruction. If the message of the Bible is distorted one could think that they are in right relationship with God, when they are not. Bringing the truth of Scripture to people is literally a matter of life and death; eternal life and eternal death.

The Apostle Peter was dealing with false teachers. They were mishandling Scripture. They were undermining essential truths, particularly concerning the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. We often refer to Christ's coming as the blessed hope. If there is no coming of Christ, where is our hope? False teaching leads to the tearing away of our hope in Christ.

There is an important concept here for us to consider. No prophecy comes from someone's own interpretation. The source of all Scripture is God himself. In order to properly interpret what Scripture is saying we need God's help. How does he help us interpret prophecy? Through his Holy Spirit, and through the rest of Scripture. The bottom line is that Scripture interprets Scripture.

One of the biggest mistakes that people make in interpretation is to read their own thoughts into the words of the Bible. For example, they want to believe that God approves of their sinful lifestyle. They then look for verses which they will take out of context to support that belief. They will at the same time ignore the verses which clearly condemn their behavior. We need all of Scripture to interpret any Scripture.

In what ways are you prone to distort the interpretation of the Word of God? Do you look to the rest of Scripture to help you to understand the Scripture you are looking at? Humbly, honestly, and objectively seek the Holy Spirit's help in interpreting the Word of God. He is the author of it all.