I have commented here from time to time on the value of proper imagination in interpreting and proclaiming Scripture. I was pleased today to come across a quote along this line from A. T. Robertson. Robertson was certainly not one to minimize close attention to the text. In fact this quote comes from his famous book urging pastors to use Greek and from a chapter on fine nuances of Greek negative particles! Robertson believed we ought to pay close attention to the particulars of Scripture and that we must be attuned to the realities of the human situation.
“Preachers become metaphysical hairsplitters in the explanation of a passage of Scripture because they fail to read between the lines and to visualize properly the atmosphere of the saying. The historical imagination is essential to correct interpretation and to effective preaching. The preacher who sees men as trees walking will speak to an audience that does not see them at all.”
(A.T. Robertson, The Minister and His Greek New Testament, 71)