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by Wayne Blank
Over the centuries since The Bible was written, humans have, for a variety of reasons, usually well-meaning and honest, but sometimes not, applied their personal interpretation of their favorite parts of the Bible to their own time and circumstances, far removed from what is truly found in God's Word. Some even today see the ultimate fulfillment of Biblical Scriptures taking place, not coincidentally, where they themselves just happen to be. They deny what the Bible plainly says, and shape the Sacred Scriptures for their own self-accommodating purposes, using them as a means of glorifying or justifying themselves, rather than The Creator, by Whom, and for Whose purposes, they were written.
While allegorical interpretation does have correct and legitimate usage, its self-centered application is actually more ancient than Christianity, having originated with the pagan mystics, and then adopted by some Jewish and Christian philosophers. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th Edition:
"Allegorical interpretation is a hermeneutical (interpretive) method used to uncover hidden or symbolic meanings of a Biblical text. Rooted in the techniques developed by Greek thinkers who attempted to overcome the problems posed by literal interpretations of ancient Greek myths, the allegorical method was further developed by Jewish scholars, such as Philo of Alexandria in the 1st century AD, and Christian thinkers, such as Clement and Origen of Alexandria in the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD. Though other methods were often used, the allegorical method was dominant until late medieval times. The Protestant Reformation of the 16th century rejected, for the most part, the allegorical method and returned to the more literal interpretation of the Bible."
Fact Finder: Did any prophecy of Scripture originate from the prophet's own interpretation?