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Bumper Sticker Theology - I can do all things through a verse taken out of context

9 July, 2023

This week we move into our next series entitled Bumper Sticker Theology. It’s a good advertising ploy to bring concepts and brands down to a short and sharp rememberable phrase. We see it a lot on church notice boards, even ours, but is it really the right thing to do about our faith?

This is what we will be looking at from now until the 2nd week in September. Thoughts or words taken that could fit on a bumper bar for others to read and absorb as we drive around the city. I wonder if you’ve ever done this or seen such a sticker that you remember?

Really, the Bible has so much to tell, teach, and inspire us I don’t think just one verse out of the possible 23,145 verses in the Old Testament and 7,957 in the New Testament (figures courtesy of Christianity FAQ, will give us the whole picture.

Unfortunately, there are a number of people who will take one verse, usually out of context, to prove a point. I have to admit I’m guilty of that. Many a time I have quoted John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that he gave…..”. Now mind you that is a pretty impressive verse that gives us a glimpse into the makeup of God, but it is only one verse.

There can be other verses that can hurt and damage people when they are taken out of context. None of us like having our comments misrepresented or skewed, and I am sure God’s not that enamoured with us doing that to God’s word either.

The Bible gives us stories and teachings. Stories about God’s desire to be in covenant with humans, and teachings from the prophets, the disciples, the evangelists as well as Christ himself. All of these things together help us to be the people that God has created us to be. So, I believe it is important to keep our verses in the context that they have been written. This brings us closer to the message that God is giving us.

We will be exploring all sorts of “verses” over the next few weeks, hopefully our searching and considering will improve our knowledge and use of this amazing text that we have been given.

Jay Robinson

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