The Clarity of Scripture
October 27, 2021

The Clarity of Scripture

The Clarity of Scripture


  1. Doctrinal Definition: The Perspicuity of Scripture- “The idea that the Bible is written is such a way that its teachings are able to be understood by all who will read it seeking God’s help and being willing to follow it.”
  2. What it Does Not Mean: Everything in the Bible is Crystal Clear & Easy to Understand:
  3. 2 Pet 3:15-16
  4. “But, it would be a mistake to think that most of Scripture or Scripture in general is difficult to understand. In fact, the OT and NT frequently affirm that Scripture is written in such a way that its teachings are able to be understood by ordinary believers.” – Grudem

What Does the Bible Teach?

  1. The Bible Frequently Affirms Its Own Clarity
  2. Deut 6:6-7 à Expected for Families to Understand It and to Teach It
  3. Ps 19:7
  4. 1 Cor 1:2 à How does this illustrate the clarity of Scripture? It was assumed that the entire congregation could read/ hear and understand.
  5. The Necessity of the Holy Spirit
  6. 1 Cor 2:14
  7. John 8:43
  8. So, why do people, even Christians, misunderstand the Scripture?
  9. Why Do People Misunderstand the Bible?
  10. Ex: Acts 15:7 (Much Debate) Jerusalem Council Debates Circumcision
  11. Gal 2:11-15 Peter’s Misapplication of the above
  12. “The existence of many disagreements about the meaning of Scripture throughout history reminds us that the doctrine of the clarity of Scripture does not imply or suggest that all believers will agree on all the teachings of Scripture. Nevertheless, it does tell us something very important- that the problem always lies not with Scripture but with ourselves.”
  13. Tools & Resources for Aid:
  14. Hermeneutics: The study of correct methods of interpretation
  15. Example à Analogy of Faith: “The analogia fidei is the process of interpretation by which an expositor labors to understand whatever text or verse with which he is working in light of doctrines drawn out of the canon of Scripture. It is seeking to match interpretive possibilities to established doctrinal truths as a safeguard against arriving at a false conclusion.” Nick Batzig
  16. James 2:21 à How does the analogy of faith help us here?
  17. Exegesis: “The process of interpreting a text of Scripture.”
  18. “When one studies principles of interpretation, that is hermeneutics, but when one applies those principles and begins actually explaining a biblical text, he or she is doing exegesis.” – Grudem
Hermeneutics Principles of Interpretation
Exegesis Process of Interpretating a Passage
Exposition A Sermon or Lesson that Expounds Upon the Main Point of any Given Text
Expository Preaching A style of preaching that Focuses on the Exposition of any given text
Consecutive or Sequential Preaching Preaching Through a Book of the Bible- This is Not Necessarily Expositional! (Though It Usually Is)
Topical Preaching Topical Preaching Starts by Finding a Text Based on a Topic- But, once the Text is Found, it Could Be Expositional!


  1. The Role of Scholarship – If Scripture is so clear, why do we need Scholars?
  2. They explore areas that help us understand in greater detail the Biblical text. These areas include textual criticism, translation theory, biblical theology, literary criticism, ancient near east studies, etc. etc.
  3. They help us to defend the doctrines of the Bible.
  4. Titus 1:9
  5. 2 Tim 2:24-25

What Does Our Confession Say?


  1. 1689 1.7: “All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all; yet those things which are necessary to be known, believed and observed for salvation, are so clearly propounded and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not only the learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of ordinary means, may attain to a sufficient understanding of them.”
  2. Proof Text: Ps 119:30


How Can We Apply This to Our Worship?


  1. Continue to Utilize the ESV & Study Bibles
  2. Perhaps Provide Bibles for Visitors?
  3. Encourage People to Read the Text with Pastor- To Study it for Themselves
  4. Encourage Cell Groups as we Grow
  5. Preach & Teach with Clarity à Neh 8:8


How Can We Apply This to Our Life?


  1. A Bible degree is not required to be a Christian- Or, period really. The average person can attain a level of understanding that is sufficient for salvation. Therefore, we should be encouraged to read, study, and dive into the Word for ourselves.

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