Verses Out of Context

Disclaimer: I am not ordained.  I have not gone to seminary.  I am not a theologian.  I did not major in theology in college.  These are my personal opinions, observations, and conclusions with studying the Bible.

I am going to address the idea of verses and context.  Both sides of the religious community can take a verse from the Bible and use it to defend their viewpoint or attack the opposition’s viewpoint.  There is a major flaw in this, regardless of whose side is making the point.

I propose this scenario.  A stranger is passing by two people in conversation on a college campus.  Both people involved in the conversation are young in appearance.  One party of the conversation is Black American.  The other party is Asian American.

Picture the above scene in clarity in your mind.  As the stranger approaches the two people involved in conversation, they can hear the below exchange.

                        Asian American – “What is with you people?!” 

                        Black American – “We shouldn’t have to put up with it!” 

                        Asian American – “Where do you people get these ideas from?!” 

                        Black American – “We have a right to do this!”

This is what the stranger is privy to while walking past the two involved in discussion.  What conclusions do you draw in your mind from this brief exchange?  Do you think that the Asian American is racist?

Society has programmed the majority of us to think in terms of race, but really, if you came to this conclusion, you are operating out of context.  Read the next part of the conversation below.

                        Asian American – “I don’t understand why students think they have that right when it goes against university policy.”

What if the conversation was between a Black American male and an Asian American female or a White American female and an Asian American male?  You could place any number of people by gender, age, sex, and religious backgrounds into the scenario and take any of it out of context because you are only seeing a part of the conversation.

This is no different when attacking or defending the Bible through the use of one or two verses.  The Bible is not about winning an argument.  It is not about proving a point.

The Bible is a guide to a pathway which leads to salvation and brings humans to a better understanding of God.  The Bible does not reveal everything we need to know about God, but it does show us His love for us.  It shows people what He expects from us and that it is alright to fall short of that expectation because we are forgiven.

I leave you with this question.

                     If you are a parent, could you sacrifice a child to pay for the sins of one other person?

God not only sacrificed His only son, but His son paid the price for all human sins.

How to Study the Bible Practically

Here is my disclaimer.  I am not ordained and have not gone to seminary or studied theology.  These are my observations on studying the Bible over the last year.

Holy Bible

When a person studies the Bible, there are all sorts of questions that arise.  Where do I start reading from?  How often do I read?  What if I don’t understand what I am reading? Etc.  What I have learned is that it does not matter where you start, how often you read, or if you understand immediately or not.  What becomes important are the absolutes or undeniable facts that remain constant regardless of time or place.

I have come to learn to understand the Bible better because of the absolutes.  Hopefully, they will bring some clarity to your readings.

  1. The Bible is God’s Word– What this means is that the WHOLE Bible is God’s Word.  Not sections of it.  Not just what Jesus said.  From Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21 is all of God’s Word.  It does not matter who spoke or wrote – ALL OF IT IS GOD’S WORD.  This also means that it does not matter what version of the Bible you are reading.  God gifted people in order to translate the Word into language that is understandable to all.  Everybody has their preference of how they read the Word, but in the end, our understanding of the Gospel in order to spread His Word is all that matters.
  2.  God is Perfect – God, in all of His glory and grace, is perfect.  Holy beyond anything we could imagine.  Because God is perfect, He is infallible.  This means that He does not contradict Himself.  Which means that the Bible does not contradict itself.  If you are still confused, understand it this way.  There can not be any verses, regardless of who spoke or who wrote, that can go against another verse.  If this is the case, then the Bible would have been proven to be written by man and discredited.  Thankfully, this is not the case.
  3.  TRUTHThe Gospel is Truth.  The Bible is God’s way of communicating to us.  It is not man’s way to manipulate the masses.

Mathematically, if you take the numbers above, you can see the equation.



Bible + God = Truth

The equation above makes the following words ring absolute as well.

The TRUTH will set you FREE!

I am a working man with a family so my time is limited, but I am hoping that God extends me some Grace in order to spread His word through this blog.

Until next time, God Bless You All!