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Word Study Wednesdays

God bless you and greetings in the name of Jesus Christ who showed his knowledge of God’s Word at an early age (Luke 2:46-47).

One of the greatest ways for the workman to work God’s Word is doing word studies. God’s Word is a Royal Tapestry with Jesus Christ being the red thread that binds it all together. Since the Scriptures were God breathed, in it we have the words of God and not merely the words of man. God, as any other author, may quote, repeat, and readapt the words that He uses in His Word. He could choose different words or even coin new ones. But regardless of what they are if they are God’s words, they will be pure words of truth (Psalms 12:6; Ephesians 1:13).

The placement of words in God’s word is of divine design. Therefore, when God repeats words, introducing them in different contexts, with new applications, and connotations, it behooves and obligates us to study each repetition in the contexts, paragraphs, and sections in which they occur. We compare the contexts of each occurrence of the words in the Word to see if its meaning is the same as used previously or if a new sense is introduced.

Deuteronomy 29:29:
The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.

One of the greatest satisfactions of the workman of God’s Word is to fathom what can be searched out from the Word of God. There are things of God which are secret or untraceable, and these cannot be explored or found out. The workman of the Word pursues what can be tracked, and quietly accepts that there are things which cannot be tracked. The Greek word, “anexichniastos,” means “untraceable,” “unsearchable,” “past finding out,” and “incomprehensible.” It occurs twice in the New Testament.

Romans 11:33:
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

Ephesians 3:8:
Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;

There is much about God that is past finding out, but there is also much in His Word that can be traced and tracked. Indeed, God hides gems of wisdom and understanding in His word and encourages us to search them out (Proverbs 25:2). However, the purpose of the hiding is not to keep them from us, but to leave them for us to discover. II Corinthians 2: 9 and 12 tells us we have not yet seen or heard the things God has prepared for us, but He has equipped us to do so by the spirit of God we received, so that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

Jesus commanded in John 5:39, “to search the Scriptures.” The Greek word for “search” is “ereunaō.” Bullinger says that it means “to seek out, track, trace, or investigate.” It is used in the Septuagint for Hebrew words meaning “to search by uncovering” and “to search minutely.” It is used of tracing the footsteps of a man, and it is used of dogs tracking game.

That is what we do in a word study. We follow a word through its uses in the Word. Whether few or many the uses of a word are each significant. We search minutely to uncover the fine points of how each word interprets itself. Just like a dog tracking game or a man following footsteps, we arrive at the correct interpretation by following the words.

God left a trail in His Word that leads to the correct interpretation. If we are diligent to follow it, we can accurately allow the Word to interpret itself. A word study properly conducted leads the workman of the Word through the three ways the Word interprets itself. We start in a verse, continue into the context, and examine not only the previous use, but also every occurrence of the word.

This manner of working the Word is unsurpassed. Proverbs 25:2 says, “…the honour of kings is to search out a matter.” The Hebrew word for “matter” is “dabar” which is usually translated “word,” and is used in Psalms 119 as one of the ten words for the Word of God. By the means of word studies, we are able to search and allow the Scriptures to define its own words and interpret itself. Just as it is the honor of kings to search out a matter, it is the honor of the workman of the Word to search out the wonderful Word of God and see the great truths that God has for us.