Biblical theology is the interpretive framework “of assumptions and presuppositions, associations and identifications, truths and symbols that are taken for granted as an author or speaker describes the world and the events that take place in it.” They use their interpretive framework to interpret earlier Scripture, history from creation to consummation, and the events and statements that they describe, recount, celebrate or address in narratives, poems, proverbs, letters, and apocalypses.
To understand what biblical theology is more clearly, it is also helpful to reflect on what it is not. Biblical theology is not saying that “my theology is more biblical than yours.” That kind of statement reflects a common misunderstanding. Biblical theology, as presented in this book, is not a way to deny biblical ideas about God’s sovereignty, the inspiration of Scripture, and the coherence and unity of the Bible’s message. After the Enlightenment, some heretics have used biblical theology in their process of denying these biblical teachings. This book, however, will assert and focus on the unity of the Bible.
The approach in this book will be to model how to read the Bible as it should be read. That is, as one unified story that Christians should read and learn from. To do that, the story, the symbols presented throughout the Bible, and the church will receive primary focus in this book. Understanding the Bible’s larger story depends heavily on understanding these three things well.