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Hermeneutics (Interpreting the Bible): Home



The sense is only one, whether simple (in the histories, precepts and prophecies openly proposed) or composite (in the typical)....                But the application can be diverse.             

                                                                                    - Francis Turretin (1623-1687)

How to Use This Guide

Welcome! The purpose of this guide is to offer a range of resources that will help you in your research process related to hermeneutics. This is by no means an exhaustive representation of the resources available but rather serves as a starting point. A basic description (and links to fuller descriptions) of biblical hermeneutics can be found in the next box below.

Clicking on the category tabs at the top of this page or on the hyperlinked categories in the following list will display some standard resources on interpreting the Scriptures. If the SEBTS library owns a book, its library call number will be shown. A brief description of each book may be seen when you hold your cursor over its information icon.


What You Will Find Behind the Category Tabs

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias:  Articles (with bibliographies!) on hermeneutical topics

Introductions & Overviews:   Standard textbooks, histories, and debates on interpretation.

Historical Components:   Books on Bible history/culture; background commentaries.

Literary Components:   Semantics & syntax, canon & criticism, genre & figures of speech.

Theological Components:   Biblical, historical, systematic theology; typology; OT in the NT.

Academic Journals:   Journals frequently containing articles related to biblical interpretation.


What is "Hermeneutics"?

Hermeneutics is sometimes defined as 'the art and science of interpretation.' One's 'hermeneutic' is one's method of interpreting a text.

Biblical scholars debate the relative importance of the author, the text, and the reader in the interpretive process. Most evangelicals, however, acknowledge that authorial intent (both Divine and human) is vital to understanding the Bible's meaning. Furthermore, many agree that Scripture is the best interpreter of Scripture. In particular, the New Testament's interpretation of the Old Testament is a key for the interpreter in his/her development of  a sound biblical hermeneutic. 

Call Numbers & Subject Headings


BS 500 - 558 - Criticism, Interpretation, and the Bible as Literature

Library of Congress Heading Outlines