Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Top 5 Wrong Context Bible Verses

The Bible is center stage in the western world, with folks taking various interpretations to support their deeply held beliefs, shrouding those beliefs in the aegis of religion.  Thus, it's only fair that we give you the top 5 verses people will quote without realizing or acknowledging the actual context of the quote.

5: Quote: (Matt. 4:9) "All these things will I give thee..."
Used as: an indication that those who follow Jesus will reap their rewards.
Is actually referring to: the time when Satan showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and told him he could have them if he became a devil worshiper.

4: Quote: (Psalms 109:8) "Let his days be few; and let another take his office..."
Used as: a way to show tell the world you want Obama (or whoever) to be a one-term President.
Is actually referring to: the Psalmist's request that Jehova murder a wicked man (the next verse is "let his children be fatherless and his wife a widow.").

3: Quote: (James 4:2) "Ye have not because ye ask not."
Used as: proof that good ol' God's gonna make you rich if you ask politely and pray correctly.
Is actually referring to: God giving grace to the humble and that sort of thing--in fact, it's the opposite of what it's often quoted to support; it actually says "a friend of the world is an enemy of God."

2: Quote: (Rev. 9:4) "And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree..."
Used as: an Earth Day/green position support.
Is actually referring to: the locusts sent from heaven and imbued with the power of scorpions who are to not hurt the grass, etc., but are to spend a full year tormenting all people not specially selected by Yahweh.

1: Quote: (Luke 12:47) "For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required."
Used as: a thing President Obama said at the 2012 National Day of Prayer breakfast in reference to his tax plan.
Is actually referring to: a slave's responsibility to his master, and whether his conduct deserves being "beaten with many stripes" or "beaten with few stripes" (no not-being-beaten-with-any-stripes-at-all option available).

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  1. Luke 12:47 seems a reasonably clear interpretation - if you know the rules and break them, you'll be punished far more severely than someone who breaks the rules without knowing them.

    As for the tax plan reference, I prefer "With great power comes great responsibility."

  2. Yeah, to be fair, it is used in the correct context, but probably not a desirable context. Fair point.

    The Bible, Shakespeare, and Stan Lee--three terrific sources for quotemining!