A text taken out of context becomes a pretext for a proof-text

I recently read two posts on the ‘Who’s that preacher’ blog regarding questionable scriptural arguments. They can both be found here and here.

I too have had many discussions along similar lines to those in the posts. I thought the following two comments particularly insightful:

[An argument] doesn’t become Scriptural just by quoting a few Scriptures.  And it doesn’t become a strong argument by piling one piece of nonsense on top of another.

If we continue to do that [make logically questionable arguments with spurious links to scripture], when others (professing Christians or out and out worldlings) see through our arguments, we do immense damage to our claim that we base everything on Scripture.

All too often we find Christians seeking out verses as a proof-texts for predisposed positions. The real problem does not lie with one Christian telling another not to drink (from an accompanying proof-text). The real problem comes when individuals, Christians or otherwise, see through shabby argument and spurious logic which leads them to question any claim we make thereon in.

If we truly want people to hear and respond to the gospel – or indeed to remain faithful once they have responded to it – we must be very careful to check that we are not simply pushing our own predispositions onto the biblical text.

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