How to interpret the Bible’s “slang”

In his Sunday message, Pastor Miles introduced the “slang” translation found in the Bible (though he admits he made it up that morning).

The Bible is made up of different literary genres or writing styles, like poetry, gospel, apocalyptic language, legal language, prophetic language, and narrative language.

“It’s like reading a self-help non-fiction book, and then a fiction book,” he said. “You write them by different rules and you read them by different rules. When you read a science fiction book, you know it’s not real!” In spite of knowing that science fiction books aren’t real, we can still enjoy them because we understand the rules of the genre.

PSA: The stories found in National Enquirer aren’t real.

Slang translation is that you understand the style and what God is trying to communicate,” he said.

One writing style found in the Bible is the hyperbole which is “slang” or exaggeration. They’re these statements that would be “way out there” if taken literally. In the hyperbole genre, however, those statements aren’t meant to be taken literally.

Luke 14:26 says:

If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.

Jesus says that if we come to Him, we need to hate our family. That doesn’t mean that we need to go all Freddy Krueger on them. What Jesus was saying was, “I want you to love me so much that, no matter what your family says, you follow me anyway.”