What does the phrase 'rightly divide the word of truth' mean?


Clarify Share Report Asked September 01 2017 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
My understanding is that the Greek word translated as "rightly dividing" in this verse (2 Timothy 2:15) is the only usage of it in the New Testament. In the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament (the Septuagint), the same verb is employed in Proverbs 3:6 and Proverbs 11:5 (which speak of God "making straight" the paths of a person who believes in Him).

In my opinion, Paul was telling Timothy to thoroughly analyze the word of God so as to accurately extract all possible meanings and lessons from it to be used in Timothy's pastoral teaching.

He was also advising Timothy to be careful to maintain doctrinal orthodoxy, and not to distort the text of the word in his teaching of it by adding to it, taking away from it, or rearranging it, which (as I understand it) was done by some religious teachers of the time.

September 02 2017 1 response Vote Up Share Report

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