Finding Principles in Scripture

As a mother, have you ever had a child approach you with an idea that sounded ok on the surface, but didn’t feel completely right after a closer look?  We live in a world that’s at times tricky to navigate. 

What if we could organize our minds in a way that would allow us to unravel the gray issues, discerning the true from the false? 

This is where principles come to our rescue.  If we can identify first principles and principles, we’ll better be able to isolate the truth and error.  Fortunately for us, God, in his mercy, has made our journey much easier by pointing out first principles in our core books–we just need to know how to find them.

Join Audrey Rindlisbacher in this episode to learn more about finding principles, and specifically, first principles in the scriptures.  She’ll take you through several verses found in Matthew in the King James version of the Bible that illustrate Jesus Christ’s use of first principles to teach the truth amidst confusing ideas.  Looking to Christ’s example and with practice, you can find the truth in today’s world of deceiving half-truths and, ultimately, peace in the storm.

Listener’s Guide:

Use the time stamps below to skip to any part of the podcast. 

1:21  The power of harmonizing scripture with secular learning through principles
4:19  A small sampling:  looking for first principles in Matthew
4:44  Use The 5 Types of Questions to dig deeper
5:48  Scribes and Pharisees focused on applications more than first principles
10:03  Jesus brings the focus back to first principles
14:04  First principles found across religions
17:23  The relationship between doctrines and first principles
18:40  Doctrines versus the commandments of men
19:57  Prioritizing first principles creates a solid foundation and brings balance to life

Quotes from this episode:

Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying, 

2 Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. 

3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? 

4 For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. 

5 But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me;

6 And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. 

7 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,

8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” ~Matthew 15:1-9 King James Version (KJV)

“I just love this section of scripture because it’s Jesus doing what he does over and over again so brilliantly, and that is not letting people replace what’s far less important for what’s most important.” ~Audrey Rindlisbacher

“Because we’re constantly asked to do good things, but they’re at the expense of more important things and when we do good things at the expense of more important things, at the expense of the first principles, then our lives unravel, our families unravel, and our society unravels.  So if we all spend our energy being kind and tolerating, that may work for a while, but if it’s at the expense of the weightier first principles that a solid society is founded upon, or a family, or a life, then it will unravel.  And this is where the confusion comes in, especially for our children and our youth, because when they go to school, go to college, go to work out in the world,…the problem really arises when they’re…asked to do a good thing, but they do that good thing at the expense of the first principle they should be living.” ~Audrey Rindlisbacher

“[God’s] made our journey much easier by helping us along the road and giving us first principles we can then latch onto, and as we live first principles, we can reap the blessings and form a more solid foundation, and then we’re lead to more truth to solve more…problems with those principles that bring inherent success in those areas of our lives.” ~Audrey Rindlisbacher

“My challenge to you is to dig a little deeper in your scriptures, to start looking for those first principles that are unifying to mankind, that compel our ascent immediately, that we know just inherently to be true because they are bridges that help us make connections and build solid foundations for our own lives, in families and communities. Everyone can get behind first principles because they are universally felt.  As you do that, I can promise you that your life will become more peaceful, more happy.” ~Audrey Rindlisbacher


“Your father is an image of the Lord of Creation, your mother an image of the Earth. For him who fails to honor them, every work of piety is in vain. This is the first duty.” ~Hindu

“Has he despised Father and Mother?” ~Babylonian

“I was a staff by my Father’s side…I went in and out at his command.”~Ancient Egyptian

“When proper respect towards the dead is shown at the end and continued after they are far away, the moral force of a people has reached its highest point.”~Ancient Chinese

Books from this episode: