Historical Cultural Context

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Lorraine Duncan Historical Cultural Context If we approach the Bible without any concern to historical-cultural context we run the danger of coming to wrong conclusions and misinterpreting the scripture. It’s really important that we look at background so we understand where the culture is different and where the culture is similar to us. I really believe without knowing the context we would make some grave errors. Also knowing background about the author or the people that the author is writing about is so important. We lose half of the communication if we don’t bother to consider background of the author and people that we read about. In fact I really believe it’s reckless. The book of Ruth is my biggest example of shedding some light on the meaning of the historical-cultural context. Ruth was Moabite and she lost her husband. Naomi was Jewish and lost her husband and 2 sons. Naomi was Ruth’s mother in law and she urged both daughter-in-laws to leave and go home so they could find husbands. Ruth stays and goes to Ruth’s home. That is where Naomi and culture intersect. Naomi knows that Boaz is a Kinsmen Redeemer to her family. Knowing all this helps interpret the passage in its historical-cultural context. It is important to know the all the customs when a spouse and sons die. This is essential to understanding the meaning of the book of Ruth. I believe that the one of the ways to persuade men and women to make and effort to study historical-cultural context is to explain that God revealed himself to these people during their time in history. He went to them in each instance so they could get to know Him. They need to understand that God also chose that time to reveal himself to man. That this was part of His plan. So it’s important that we share that with them. Also we need share the dangers of not doing the work to check out the
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