Joe Teisan: March 2017
HOW DOES THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE ADD TO OUR ENJOYMENT OF READING GOD’S WORD?
In 1900, archaeologists digging in the hot, dry sands of Egypt discovered thousands of Greek papyri (papers). They were written in the everyday common Greek language of the people. This Greek was the marketplace, the everyday language of the Roman Empire, not the classical language of Greek literature. Up until this discovery, the New Testament was the only book written in common Greek, and Bible scholars wondered why. It was God’s plan to put His Holy Word in the language of all the people. Common or Koine Greek was the standard language of the Roman Empire. Now we can understand various shades of the original as scholars compare the Biblical text with the papyri. The Amplified Bible, using the results of these new discoveries makes the New Testament glow with rich new meaning.
Compare your own Bible with the Amplified Bible as you read. The Amplified brings out the richness of the original key words. For example, the original Greek for the word “believe” has many meanings. To believe in Christ is, “to adhere to, cleave to, to trust in, to have faith in, to rely on, to depend on.” How will knowing these 6 synonyms for “believe” help you clarify the way of salvation to others? In John 11:25, “Jesus said to her I am (Myself) the Resurrection and the Life. Whoever believes in (adheres to, trusts in, and relies on) Me, although he may die, yet he shall live.” The creative use of amplification helps us to better understand God’s Inspired Word. All quotations are from the Amplified Bible, published by Zondervan in 1987.
Comparing Bible translations is a highly important study skill. Note the shades of meaning in the following verses. Matthew 7:7, “Keep on asking and it will be given you; keep on seeking and you will find; keep on knocking (reverently) and (the door) will be opened to you.” How does this verse improve your prayers? Do you love to sin, or hate to sin? 1 John 3:6: “No one who abides in Him (who lives and remains in communion with and in obedience to Him – deliberately, knowingly, and habitually) commits (practices) sin. No one who (habitually) sins has either seen or known Him.” Why is God giving us laws that we cannot keep? Galatians 3:24: ”The Law served … as our trainer (our guardian, our guide to Christ, to lead us) until Christ (came) that we might be justified (declared righteous, put in right standing with God) by and through faith.
Is God working out His special plan for my life? Did God just know me or did He love me from the beginning? Romans 8:28-29: “All things work together and are (fitting into a plan) for good to … those who love God and are called according to (His) design and purpose. “For those whom He foreknew (of whom He was aware and loved beforehand), He also destined from the beginning (foreordained them) to be molded into the image of His Son (and share inwardly His likeness).” Spiritually growing in Christ-likeness is our aim in teaching Scripture. Did I come to Christ of my own free will, or did the Holy Spirit give me the desire? John 6:44: No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him (giving him the desire to come to Me)…” How were they saved in Old Testament times? Psalms 2:12: “Kiss the Son (pay homage to Him in purity), lest He be angry and you perish.”
Joseph A. Teisan