A Lesson In “Rightly Dividing” The Bible

Our “Apostle to the Gentiles,” Paul, instructs us as grace-age Gentile believers to:

15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV)

Paul also says, as we Study the Scripture, we are to discern the things that differ.”

10 That ye may approve [Greek, dokimazo, discern] things that are excellent [Greek diaphero, “things that are different’; [so] that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; Philippians 1:10 (KJV)

As we study, we comparing Scripture with Scripture, we will see things that differ and are contrary to each other. The most important differing things are those that we note as contrary between Paul’s epistles to and for the Gentile body of Christversus that which applies to the Nation Israel.

Problem: NOT all the Bible is written to us today or about us, as seen below.

Consider and compare these two verses and to note (discern) the significant differences underlined.

  • Peter at Pentecost preached to “ye men of Israel” saying: 21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath SPOKEN by the mouth of all his holy prophets Since the world began. Acts 3:21
  • Paul preached to all the believers at Rome saying: 25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my [Paul’s] gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery [secret], which was KEPT SECRET Since the world began, Romans 16:25

As we will see the ‘Misapplication of the Bible Can be Harmful to Your faith.’ You may have heard a Christian teacher say you can insert your name into a verse in the Bible when you see such words and phrases as “the world,” “whosoever,” “me,” “my” “him,” “her,” “them,” “you,” and other personal pronouns… as though everything in the Bible applies to you.

There are available personalized Bibles with your name inserted in it more than 7,000 times… as if everything in it applies to you. (https://personalisedbible.com). By inserting your name, instead of reading “God so loved the world (Jn. 3:16), it could read this way: “God so loved the worldJoe,’ that he gave his only begotten Son…”

You might say, what’s wrong with that? Well, while the promise is legitimate, neither Joe or you are “the world,” so it misses the scope of ‘the world.’ The ‘world’ here is the Greek ‘kosmos,’ here speaking of the ruinous condemned state of God’s whole creation, and particularly mankind. God “gave His only begotten Son,” at the cross to ultimately redeem mankind, and this whole creation, unto having “everlasting life.”

Should we also personalize Psalm 23 to say…

“The Lord is mylittle orphan Annie’s shepherd; I ‘orphan Annie shall not want.”

You might say, what’s wrong with that? Well, this is an even more serious error since it a prophetic Psalm of David concerning God’s provision for Israel during the coming Tribulation period while Antichrist is ruling. So, it does not apply to any of us as members of the Gentile “body of Christ” today.

I’ve often heard both preachers and politicians misuse the Bible assuming 2 Chronicles 7:14 as if to say

“If my people [as if those of the USA], which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land [in North America].” (2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)

You might say, what’s wrong with that? Well first, the “my people” here are not today’s members of “the church, the body of Christ” located in the USA. The “My people” here is the ‘Nation Israel’ and we are not the spiritual Israel.’ Secondly, the “land” to be healed is very ‘the Land of Israel’ which is in the Mideast, not the USA on the continent of North America.

Likewise we cannot claim Isaiah 53:4-9 as if it applies to us. Its about Israel being healed of their sin and rebellion against the Lord. he (Messiah) was wounded for our [Israel’s] transgressions (Law-breaking), he was bruised for our Iniquities (Sins): the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are HEALED. 6 All we [Israel] like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity [Sins] of us all. (Isaiah 53:5-6 (KJV)

Then there are preachers who promote tithing today as a basis for getting God’s blessing and favor, they use this to extort money from the believers. The Bible tells us there were three tithes applying to Israel Only, and no tithe applies to us Gentiles of “His body.” (See https://artlicursi.com/articles/tithing-or-giving )

These above are some examples of the corrupting misuse of the Bible by changing its words or ignoring the context.’ These distort Bible truth by often misappropriating God’s promises unto one’s self-interest when these ‘promises of God’ actually belong to another party or person – usually belonging to the Nation Israel!

Now consider this verse when it is corrupted by inserting my name, ‘Arthur.’

“And whatsoever ye [Arthur] shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.14 If ye [Arthur] shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.” (John 14:13-14 KJV)

Jesus of Nazareth here above is addressing Israel Only as He was “a minister of the circumcision [Israel]” (cf. Rom. 15:8, cf. Matt. 15:24). If we do not recognize that these verses ONLY concern the ‘Nation Israel,’ then we might think There’s something wrong when our prayers aren’t answered. Then to this some well-meaning Christian friend might accuse you saying; “Well, you lacked faith or There is sin in your life.” This then could then lead me unnecessarily to ‘self-condemnation that then distances me from the Lord for such shamewhile in fact He accepts me “in the beloved” loving me unconditionally since I am “in Christ.”

So, it can be harmful to our faith and walk when we foolishly claim the promises of God To ‘Israelwhen they are not fulfilled… because they DON’T Apply To US Gentiles of this age of the life-sustaining Gift of “the grace of God.” This is the danger of taking the Bible’s ‘Promises To Israel’as if they are for us today.

Misunderstanding the Bible is most-often the result of false, lying, deceived preachers and Bible teachers, misusing the Bible. Such deceivers have long taught that you can ‘name it and claim it all,’ as your personal promises from God. They falsely say ‘all the promises of God are yours.’ They think every page in the Bible is addressed to us, falsely claiming every promise in the book as ours! But this is NOT the truth.

Such deceivers are saying we today can pilfer [steal] the promises God made to the Nation Israel ONLY. They ignore or do not believe Jesus’ own words and the words of Paul as seen below.

“But he [Jesus] answered and said, I am not sent but [only] unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Matt. 15:24
“These twelve [Messianic Apostles] Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: 6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Matthew 10:5-6 (KJV)

“Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision [the Nation Israel] for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers [‘Fathers of Israel’ only]: Romans 15:8 (KJV)

The idea of inserting anyone’s name or country into any and every place of promise in the scripture is not only wrong, but as you’ve seen, it also is extremely dangerous to one’s faith. It also destroys the very foundation of dispensational Bible study’ … which requires the student of the Bible to know exactly To Whom the words of the Bible passage are being addressed. Thereby also we can know who is NOT being addressed.

Note that about three-quarters of your Bible concerns Israel Only. So, Christians of the Gentile “body of Christ” have their expectations based upon what we read in Paul’s epistles, especially Romans, Galatians, and his 7 Post-Acts epistles for the all who are of today’s dispensational age of the mystery [the former secret plan of God]concerning “the body of Christ ‘NOW revealed.’

“Even the mystery [Grk. musterion, secret] which Hath Been Hid From Ages And From Generations, but NOW is made manifest to his saints:” Colossians 1:26 (KJV)  

You really wouldn’t want to claim ALL God’s promises. Did you ever note how God made the earth miraculously swallow up 14,700 men of Israel … who Tried To Claim privileges, positions, and promises that were not theirs (just read Numbers 16)? To this some may say ‘Well, that was a different time, place, and people.’ True, but the principal is the same for those who today foolishly take all the Bible’s words and promises personally’ in every place in the Bibleonly to find They Don’t Work For Us In This Age.

The truth is that not every promise in the book is ours. If that were true, wouldn’t ALL God’s promises of CONDEMNATION would also be ours? Claiming ALL things then doesn’t have the same fuzzy feeling as claiming the promises of blessing that do not even apply to us anyway.

Misappropriating of God’s words is ‘stealing.’

  • Just imagine, if I replaced your name with mine on the deed of your house. I would be a thief!
  • What if the electric company replaced my name on my electric bill with your name? Unjust!

Typically, when a promise to one person is suddenly changed by inserting another person’s name, that person is called a liar, and is in “breach of contract.”

The simple fact is that Not Every Promise in the Bible Can Be Claimed by Us Today During this age of “the dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph. 3:2)! For we of “the body of Christ” today already enjoy the greatest unconditional, acceptance, and grace filled relationship with God as our Father than was available to the Nation Israel in the Old Testament and in the Gospels.

  • We are already “blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3).
  • “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?” Romans 8:35 (KJV)
  • We now know that all things [the good and the bad things] are [now] working for the good,” (Rom. 8:28-30) spiritually, and eternally. Knowing this, we can endure all things by His grace.
  • For we right now have Christ IN US as our hope of [eternal] glory.’ We are those;

“To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery [Gk. musterion, the formerly secret plan of God] among the Gentiles; which is CHRIST IN YOU, THE HOPE OF GLORY:” (Col. 1:27)

We ought not to treat ‘God’s word’ so loosely as to misuse His word! Why would God, who magnifies His WORD above His Name’ (Psalm 138:2) want us to have a corrupted personalized Bible?

“… for thou [the Lord] hast Magnified Thy WORD above all thy name.” (Psalm 138:2 (KJV)

Those who misuse the Bible in any way are not magnifying God’s word or His good name. They are misusing His word for the sake of the personal temporary gain or power by claiming the Parts of the Bible that belong to Israel…  as if it was promised to them … while assiduously leaving aside the curses for others.

The Dispensational approach to Bible study teaches us first to identify the audience’ being spoken to or about in Scripture before assuming it is talking to us or about us. This process of ‘identifying the audience’ simply requires noting the ‘context’ of the words. See James 1:1 and note to whom it is written.

These two points, ‘audience’ and ‘context,’ most often Separate or Divide the instructions and operation of God into twodifferent and significant Dispensational Programs’ as they apply to God’s Two Different people groups; i.e., 1) ‘the Law’ applying to Israel, and 2) ‘Pure Grace,’ applies to “the Body of Christ.” Thus, that which applies to Israel does NOT apply to the members of today’s church… the body of Christ.”

From the time of Exodus 19:5 (below) and the giving of ‘the Law,’ Israel was under ‘the dispensation’ of “the Law” which included the IF YE Conditional Promises.’

“Now therefore, IF YE [the Nation Israel] will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant [the Law], then ye [the Nation Israel] shall be a peculiar treasure unto me ABOVE ALL PEOPLE: for all the earth is mine:” (Exodus 19:5

By contrast we of the Gentile “body of Christ” today freely enjoy “the dispensation of the grace of God,” and a new Hope and Calling to “heaven far above,” not being at all involved with Israel’s Law program, nor its Conditional Promises.  “… for ye [of the body of Christ] are NOT under the law, but under grace.” Rom 6:14

Paul calls this approach to the Bible rightly DIVIDING the word of truth” saying; Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15 (KJV)

Thus, Paul tells us how we are to Study the Bible. We must Divide what in the Bible belongs to Israel from what belongs to us as members of “the churchthe body of Christ during today’s age of the Pauline “Mystery” gospel of “the grace of God.” We study context, contrasts, and differences, which are significant.

The word “mystery,” as is often used by Paul, is the Greek “musterion,” meaning ‘a secret.’ In this case it refers to the formerly secret plan of God that is now revealed through Paul’s 13 Epistles. They concern His formation of the Gentile “body of Christ.” This ‘Mystery’ reveals the intimate relationship we as believers have with God today, being based upon “the [pure, 100%] grace of God.”

These are several mistaken ideas of those who misuse the Bible by notrightly dividing the word of truth.”

  • You cannot insert yourself into the promise of Jeremiah 29:10-11, note the words of v8 in which The Lord is speaking to the remnant of Israel while in captivity in Babylon.
  • You cannot claim the 2 Chronicle 7:14 prayer of Israel in order to earn blessing upon the USA.
  • You cannot insert yourself into the prayer of Jabez as if God would you, too. Jabez lived under God’s covenant of the Law with Israel. The “Law” is always conditional, sayingif thou,” while today’s Pauline “gospel of the grace of God” is unconditional ... as “the Gift of God” (Eph. 2:8-9)
  • The famous 23rd Psalm is speaking about physical and inner comfort available for Israel during the Tribulation period, speaking of promises made exclusively to Israel’s believers.

“He sheweth ‘his word’ Unto Jacob [Israel], his statutes and his judgments Unto Israel. 20 He hath not dealt so with any [other] nation: and as for his judgments, they [the Gentiles] have not known them…” (Psa 147:19-20)

  • You cannot insert your name into Jesus of Nazareth’s words as if they apply to you. Jesus of Nazareth came addressing only “the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel.” (Matt. 15:24).
  • ‘all Scripture is for our learning’ but not all the Bible’s words are To Us or About Us as Gentiles.
  • You cannot insert both ‘the Nation Israel’ and “the body of Christ” into James’ epistle or the epistles of Peter or John. E.g., James 1:1 (below) clearly identifies his audience as the “twelve tribes” of Israel in the very first verse… just read the words! “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To The Twelve Tribes [of Israel] which are scattered abroad, greeting.” (James 1:1 (KJV)

This may be a shock to many Christians, but words’ actually mean something! So, we are to leave the words of the Bible as written without misappropriating them. It is also okay and fine to look at the correct Greek ‘Received Text’ to expand our knowledge.

The Lord doesn’t want people to speak for Him by saying things that He did not say. They are false prophets.

“… saith the LORD Concerning The Prophets That Prophesy In My Name, and I Sent Them NOT, Yet They Say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land; By sword and famine shall Those Prophets be Consumed.” (Jer. 14:15

We should thank the Lord that we today live during “the dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph. 3:2) and have Paul’s words in the KJV Bible, which are only understood and appreciated by those who practice rightly dividing the word of truth,” as we rely upon the Holy Spirit to enlighten us with the “Spirit of revelation.” We can be intelligized believers who know what the Bible says, standing upon its “word of truth” for us today.

Note Jesus’ use of precisepronouns to identify His audience when making clear to Nicodemus that the nation of Israel’ had to be “born again by saying YE [plural, the Nation of Israel] must be born again.” (Jn. 3:7) Recall that Jesus had said; “… I am not sent but [except] unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” (Matt. 15:24). Jesus used the word “thee” in John 3:7 (below), “I say unto thee [Nicodemus].” Thee is singularreferring to Nicodemus ‘individually,’ while “ye,’ being plural, refers to all Israel as a Nation needing to be “born of the spirit.” “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” John 3:7 (KJV).

(See also https://artlicursi.com/articles/can-gentile-be-%E2%80%9Cborn-again%E2%80%9D )

Thus, ‘thee’ and ‘ye’ are always important words for interpreting exactly who the audience is for what is being said. But sadly, most all the corrupted ‘modern’ so-called Bibles today hide this truth by substituting the word you in place of both “thee” and “ye.” By wrongfully substituting the word “you,” nobody can know who exactly is being addressed. We must go to the Authorized King James Version or its Greek text.

The New King James Bible publishers proudly say; One of the most significant features of the NKJV was the removal of the second person pronouns “thou.” “thee,” “ye,” “thy,” and “thine.” They have replaced these words with you. This keeps you from knowing who is being addressed and spoken of here in Jn 3:7

The New King James Bible Version has more than 100,000 changes from the Authorized KJV, omitting the words “hell” 22 times, “blood” 23 times, “repent” 44 times, “heaven” 50 times, “God” 51 times, “Lord” 66 times. The words “devils,” “damnation,” and “JEHOVAH,” are completely omitted in the NKJV.

WARNING: Do Not Rely On Any of The So-Called ‘Modern Bibles’ such as NIV, NASB, ESV, etc. with their word changes, elimination, and addition of words, while eliminating whole Bible verses. These verses listed are among 40 verses or so that are totally missing when compared with the KJV, e.g. Mat. 17:21, 18:11, 23:14. Mk. 7:16, 9:44, 9:46, 11:26, 15:28; Luke 17:36; Jn 5:4; Acts 8:37, 15:34, Acts 24:7, Acts 28:29; Rom. 16:24; I Jn 5:7.

Also, forget the paraphrased Bibles such as ‘Good News For Modern Man’ or ‘The Living Bible.’ These are not even trying to be literal translations. They are men’s ideas of what they think it should say and mean. Yet we get this is the kind of stuff from most pulpits today.

Ask yourself, “Who could be behind such corruption of the word of God?” Might it be ‘Lucifer,’ the Devil, who is at work in most seminaries and Bible publishing to develop these corrupted modern Bibles that are promoted under the guise of being easier to read? The KJV is written in fifth grade English of the time, ~500 years ago. You can read here about what the Bible says about the inspiration and preservation’ of God’s words. (See https://artlicursi.com/articles/inspiration-preservation-scriptures )