Episode 144 – Lenses of Context Pt 1: Historical

Perhaps the most frequent question we hear is, “How do I learn to study the Bible in context on my own?” That’s why we wrote a free e-book called The #1 Mistake Most Everyone Makes Reading the Bible. In it, we unpack six lenses of context: historical, cultural, geographical, visual, linguistic, and literary. In this brand-new mini-series, Lenses of Context, we’ll explore each lens, citing specific examples of how that particular lens amplifies the meaning of the Text. In this episode, we unpack how the surprising history of the ancient city of Sardis informed Jesus’s warning to the church there in Revelation 3:1-6. By the end of this episode you’ll be equipped with a set of five questions to ask any passage you’re reading in order to understand the historical context.

Discussion Questions

  • What was your biggest takeaway from the teaching? 
  • What are some other Biblical passages or stories where you’d really like to know more about the historical context? 
  • Why do you think our first impulse when reading the Bible is typically, “What does this mean for me, now” rather than “What did this mean for them, then?” 
  • The city of Sardis trusted in the height of their walls and became complacent. What are some of the ways we often “fall asleep” and begin trusting in ourselves rather than being awake and alert and trusting in God? 
  • How will you begin living out the truths of this teaching this week?  

For Further Study

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