“Some things hard to understand”

Some comments by Heinrich Bullinger on Scripture (not a blanket-endorsement of Bullinger):

“Neither do we read that the prophets and apostles, the servants of God and interpreters of his high and everlasting wisdom, did use any strange kind of speech: so that in the whole pack of writers none can be found to excel them in a more plain and easy phrase of writing. Their writings are full of common proverbs, similitudes, parables, comparisons, devised narrations, examples, and such other like manner of speeches, than which there is nothing that doth more move and plainly teach the common sorts of wits among mortal men. There ariseth, I confess, some darkness in the scriptures, by reason of the natural property, figurative ornaments, and the unacquainted use of the tongues. But that difficulty may easily be helped by study, diligence, faith, and the means of skilful interpreters. I know that the apostle Peter saith, in the epistles of Paul “many things are hard to be understood” but immediately he addeth, “which the unlearned, and those that are unperfect, or unstable, pervert, as they do the other scriptures also, unto their own destruction.”

Whereby we gather, that the scripture is difficult or obscure to the unlearned, unskilful, unexercised, and malicious or corrupted wills, and not to the zealous and godly readers or hearers thereof. Therefore, when St Paul saith,

“If as yet our gospel be hid, from them it is hid which perish, in whom the prince of this world hath blinded the understanding of the unbelievers, that to them there should not shine the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God 6”;

[6 2 Cor. iv. 3, 4. “Lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ.” — Cranmer’s Bible 1539.]

he doth not lay the blame of this difficulty on the word of God, but upon the unprofitable hearers…For our Saviour also in the gospel saith:

“This is damnation, because the light came into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light.”

Besides that, the holy prophets of God, and the apostles, did not call the word of God, or the scriptures, darkness, obscureness, or mistiness, but a certain brightness and lightsomeness. David saith:

“Thy word is a lantern unto my feet, and a light unto my paths.” (Heinrich Bullinger, Decades, 1st Decade, Sermon 3, vol 1, pp. 71-72; paragraphing mine–CD).

And related to these comments by Bullinger are the following links: