Biblical Studies

Principles of Biblical Interpretation

Would you like to improve your ability to interpret Scripture accurately and discover meaning behind difficult passages? In this course, you’ll learn easy-to-use skills for your own personal Bible study from Dr. R.C. Sproul.

  • Worldwide Class

    Take this course with a class of Ligonier Connect students from around the world. Registration includes:

    • 24/7 access for 6 months to complete the course at your own pace
    • Video lectures from Dr. R.C. Sproul along with the full, downloadable study guide
    • Discuss questions and share notes with up to 30 other Ligonier Connect students in your class
    • Approved by the Association of Christian Schools International for one continuing education unit
  • Create your own group class

    Take this course with your own private group of friends, family, or church members. With a group class, you'll be able to:

    • Take the class together on a schedule or allow members to work at their own pace
    • Invite anyone to join your class (requires a Ligonier Connect subscription)
    • Moderate discussion questions and leave feedback for each member of your class
    • Monitor each member's progress at a glance

About this course

Christians need some basic guidance on how to interpret the Bible. Just a few principles of interpretation will go a long way toward helping the believer understand the Scriptures. Here are the easy-to-use skills for your own personal study. Through the course you will learn how to approach difficult passages, how to find the true meaning of each verse, and how to place each passage in its proper context. This course is sure to be helpful to all who seek to know God’s revelation better. The 12 course lectures are from R. C. Sproul’s "Knowing Scripture" Teaching Series.

An optional book Knowing Scripture can be purchased from the Ligonier Store here to enhance the learning experience.

This course has been approved by the Association of Christian Schools International for one Continuing Education Unit.

Course Path Overview

  • GETTING STARTED

    • Welcome to the Principles of Biblical Interpretation

      • to-do Review Course Material
      • to-do Update Your Student Profile
      • to-do Introduce Yourself
  • Why Study the Bible?

    • Lesson 1: Why Study the Bible?

      • watch Why Study the Bible
      • read Chapter One - Why Study the Bible in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
      • Take Lesson 1 Self-Assessment
  • Personal Bible Study & Private Interpretation

    • Lesson 2: Private Interpretation

      • watch Private Interpretation
      • read Chapter Two - Personal Bible Study & Private Interpretation in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
      • Take Lesson 2 Self-Assessment
  • Hermeneutics: The Science of Interpretation

    • Lesson 3: The Science of Interpretation

      • watch The Science of Interpretation
      • read Chapter Three - Hermeneutics: The Science of Interpretation in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 4: Literal Interpretation

      • watch Literal Interpretation
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 5: Literary Forms (Part 1)

      • watch Literary Forms (Part 1)
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 6: Literary Forms (Part 2)

      • watch Literary Forms (Part 2)
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
      • Take Lesson 6 Self-Assessment
  • Practical Rules for Biblical Interpretation

    • Lesson 7: Reading the Bible Existentially

      • watch Reading the Bible Existentially
      • read Chapter Four - Practical Rules for Biblical Interpretation in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 8: The Historical Narrative

      • watch The Historical Narrative
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 9: The Explicit & The Implicit

      • watch The Explicit & The Implicit
      • to-do Word Study Exercise
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 10: Parallelisms

      • watch Parallelisms
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
      • Take Lesson 10 Self-Assessment
  • Culture & the Bible

    • Lesson 11: Scripture & Culture

      • watch Scripture & Culture
      • read Chapter Five - Culture & the Bible in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
    • Lesson 12: Principle vs. Custom

      • watch Principle vs. Custom
      • read Chapter six - Practical Tools for Bible Study in “Knowing Scripture”
      • to-do Putting It Into Practice
      • Take Lesson 12 Self-Assessment
  • Final Assessment

    • Final Assessment

      • to-do Putting It All Together
      • Take Final Assessment for Principles of Biblical Interpretation Certificate