It is said that we must take every word of the Bible literally. Yet, as we come to know God’s word better it is understood that the context determines the literalness of a passage or a section of scripture. For the past couple weeks we looked at the rules of recognizing figurative language. This week’s focus will change as we start to look at specific types of figures of speech in the Bible.
A simile can be identified with words such as: like, as, so, etc. Similes are used to make a comparison of two objects. Notice these next three passages where “like” and “as” are used.
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season, And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)
Before sending out the 70 on the limited commission, Jesus told them, “behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.” (Luke 10:3)
Jesus said of the coming judgment, “All the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats;
Similes draw a picture in our minds for us to better understand that which is being compared. As we read the Bible notice how often this figure of speech is used.