Context or Pretext in Interpreting Scripture?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Heavenly Pilgrim, Feb 26, 2008.

  1. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    Almost daily we hear someone refer to a text and infer that the text only applies to one group of individuals for that group is the group ‘in context’ and subsequently the only group it applies to.

    Let’s take the text most recently mentioned. Mt 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ Upon this text

    What about this approach to Scripture? Is this really applying context or is it nothing more than convenient pretext to line up and deliver the end result of our interpretation for a predetermined end driven by our presuppositions?

    What keeps one from dividing up the entire Word of God into messages to or from this group or that individual, and then conclude that none of it really applies to us because we are not in the object to which the passage was intended for? Is it in keeping with sound biblical interpretation to limit the scope of the writer to be directed only towards the group or individuals the passage directly is spoken to or about?

    Certainly there are passages directed to a precise group or individual, but wisdom would tell me that such an approach as was taken in the passage above is not only unwarranted but removes from the passage a clear message and warning from God applicable and intended for all in every generation to heed.

    At what point can our application of applying context simply render pretext?
     
    #1 Heavenly Pilgrim, Feb 26, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 26, 2008
  2. Sgt. Fury

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    When loyalty to preconcieved notions or denominational doctrines is greater than loyalty to the Scriptures, the Scriptures often need to apply to "someone else", for they simply cannot mean what they clearly say.
     
  3. BobRyan

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    Indeed - it is the never-ending conflict between human nature and the truth of God's Word.
     
  4. BobRyan

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    Perfect illustration HP -- thanks.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  5. DHK

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    1. A perfect illustration of using another member in his OP
    2. A perfect illustration of ignoring other Scripture and thus context.

    Matthew 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.
    --Jesus is speaking privately to his disciples. His disciples have the Kingdom in mind. Before the Kingdom comes there will come a great persecution. We know it as the Tribulation, and it is described in Rev.6-19. It is also referred to in the OT as Jacob's Trouble.

    The key is cross-referencing other Scripture. If one ignores other Scripture he cannot make sense of the Scripture he is reading. Compare Scripture with Scripture. A good one to keep in mind is:

    Ye do err not knowing the Scriptures neither the power of God.

    Here you find the exact same verse:
    Matthew 24:13-15 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
    14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
    15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand)

    Verse 15ff gives the context. The context is in the Great Tribulation. The Antichrist will enter the Temple and offer a pig or unclean animal, and desecrate it. This will be right in the middle of the seven year period of the Tribulation. It is referred to as the "abomination pof desolation." When that happens, Jesus says:

    Matthew 24:16-19 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
    17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
    18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
    19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!

    These things have not happened yet. There is nothing in this entire passage to indicate anything that is referring to a spiritual salvation. It all refers to being saved physically, from the wrath that is to come. The context is very clear.

    If some would study their Bibles they would see this without any presuppositions at all.
     
  6. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: Now why would Jesus be speaking 'privately to his disciples,' admonishing ‘them’ to persevere to the end if in fact he was speaking of an event even we, two thousand years later have not seen? If no one knows absolutely certain if in fact it is they that will be of the ‘last generation, and Christians are raptured out before the tribulation even occurs anyway, who in the world is He addressing and admonishing? It could not possibly be directed to any believer, let alone those personal disciples standing before Him, at that time or any other, apart from one possibly converted in the tribulation period, now could it? Again, why could such advice be given ‘privately to His personal disciples’ at that time if what you seem to be claiming is true??
     
  7. Sgt. Fury

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    The referred to section of Matt 24 is speaking of the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70, which would occur within the lifetime of some of those to whom Jesus was speaking. This accounts for Jesus' words in Mt 24:34, "Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled."

    There are two questions being adressed in Mt 24,

    1. When shall these things (events described in 24:2) be?
    2. What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

    In the following verses there references to "those days" (24:19, 22, and 29). These all refer to the first question about the destruction of the Temple.

    In 24:36, Jesus speaks of "that day", the day of the 2nd Coming and the end of the world.

    Misunderstandings such as the one under consideration are often caused by false doctrines such as premillenialism and OSAS. Such ideas are in conflict with the Scriptures.
     
  8. DHK

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    WOW!
    Talk about presuppositions obscuring the true meaning of the text! You have the perfect example right here. You have the presupposition that eternal security can't mean eternal security, and therefore are unwilling to take the Scripture at its face value! Amazing! Simply amazing! What great lengths people will do to force their pre-conceived ideas into the plain reading of the Scriptures!
     
  9. DHK

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    Why? Because the Scriptures say he was!
    Ye do err not knowing the Scriptures!

    Matthew 10:1-4 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.
     
  10. DeafPosttrib

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    Good afternoon.

    The reason, they saying this passage is for end times apply to Jews of Israel only. Because, they dislike what Christ actual saying. They say, church was not yet born till Pentacost Day, so, this passage is not apply to the Church. Christ was talking to the Jews only only. Does Christ actual saying it? No. Christ talked to his disciples, remember, they were Christ's followers. Aren't we the disciples of Christ? CHrist said, 'ye', 'you' throughout context of Matthew chapter 24 about 21 times. Clearly, he spoken toward us as Christians both Jews and Gentiles.

    Many do not like hear what Christ saying of Matt. 24:10-13, because his lecture offend their feeling. We have to accept his lecture. Matt. 24:10-13 is already fulfilling in our eyes, since Early Church, many Christians were persecuted and killed for thier faith and Christ's sake. Many were falling away into cold. Some of them were endure throughout their life till death. Christ tells us, that we must endure hold our faith till death, then we shall be overcome and have eternal life - Rev. 3:5.

    NOt only in Matthew 24:13, also, in the book of Hebrews chapter 3 and 4 talking alot about hold our faith till the end, as we go enter his rest, do not let us leaving away from his rest. 'Rest' is pictured of eternal life and salvation - Heb. 2:3; 3:6; 3:14; and **4:1**- "Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his 'rest', any of you should seem to come short of it."

    Isreal in the wilderness with Moses give us the lesson, what happened to them. They disobedience God, and did not hold their faith, and they died without enter the land of Canaan. Entering the land of Canaan is a type of heaven-salvation. Only two persons of the first generation did made int entered land of Canaan - Caleb and Joshua, because of their faith.

    Matthew 10:22; and Matthew 24:13 did telling us the matter of our faith and endure. 'Saved' is not speak of their flesh(body) shall be survived at the second coming, as what many pretribs interpreting, this is speak of their SOULS.

    What about Matt. 24:22? This is speaking of persecution. Many people will be killed. 'Flesh' seems speak of literal body. But, it speaks of PERSON. Of course, many Christians will be killed, their body will be tortured and killed by perscuted, but, the ELECT's sake will be saved, which speak of their souls will be deliver.

    Remember, Christ saying to us of Matt. 10:28, do not fear of anyone who is persecute against you, they can kill your body, but, they cannot take your soul. Rather fear the Lord, He have the power to take our body AND soul both.

    Bible commands us to be endure throughout our life till death, as we continue hold our faith till death, then we shall be overcomer and have eternal life - Revelation 3:5. What if we fail to overcome them in our life by the time we die, then our names would not be written in the book of life, we might be cast away in the lake of fire.

    We better take heed and listen what Christ saying, believe and obey His word, so, we can have eternal life with Christ.

    In Christ
    Rev. 22:20 -Amen!
     
  11. DHK

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    Yes, take heed brother. Take heed to the context.
    Has the abomination of desolation taken place yet? If so when? When will it take place?

    Matthew 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.

    And just what does this verse refer to?

    Has this taken place taken? If so when? If not when does it take place? Context! Why are you ignoring context?
     
  12. peterotto

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    LOL! The question is on you DHK.

    Isaiah 19:1 "An oracle concerning Egypt:
    See, the LORD rides on a swift cloud
    and is coming to Egypt.
    The idols of Egypt tremble before him,
    and the hearts of the Egyptians melt within them."

    Has the LORD rode on a cloud to Egypt yet? If so when? When will it take place?


    Here is another one.
    2 Samuel 22:8-10 "
    "Then the earth quaked and trembled; the foundations of the heavens shook; they quaked because of his anger.
    9 Smoke poured from his nostrils; fierce flames leaped from his mouth; glowing coals flamed forth from him.
    10 He opened the heavens and came down; dark storm clouds were beneath his feet."



    Did the Lord come down as David describes? If so when? OR when will it take place?
     
  13. DHK

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    These are red herrrings and has nothing to do with the "abomination of desolation," my reference point for the context of the passage. So why bring it up. Define the abomination of desolation. When and where does it take place? Then you will be able to answer the question of context.
     
  14. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Quote:


    HP: Would you have it within your sense of fair play to read my complete question and answer it within the scope of what I said, instead of extracting a snippet that by itself does not speak in the least to the question I honestly asked?

    This is the complete question I asked you. Now why would Jesus be speaking 'privately to his disciples,' admonishing ‘them’ to persevere to the end if in fact he was speaking of an event even we, two thousand years later have not seen?


     
  15. DHK

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    The answer to your question, in part at least, is to ask Jesus. I quoted to you the context. He had taken his disciples apart. The first part of the chapter tells us not only that he is speaking to his disciples but it gives the name of each and every disciple that he is speaking to. I believe he has a right to speak to those whom he chooses, don't you? Why? You can ask him. After all they are his disciples.

    However, in a sense of fair play, you must accept what the context says, and that is that he is speaking to his disciples. The why? Ask Christ.

    Why would he be teaching them on end times. Why wouldn't he? He taught them to pray after this manner:
    "Our Father who art in Heaven
    Hallowed be thy name,
    Thy Kingdom come...

    Your question is akin to why would Christ be so deceitful in asking his disciples to pray for a Kingdom that wouldn't come for more than 2,000 years. What a hypocrite! Is that your attitude HP? That seems to be the same question that you are asking. Why not throw out all of eschatology.

    The last prayer of the Bible is by John: "Even so come Lord Jesus"
    Why did the Lord teach that His coming was imminent?
    Isn't that deceitful on the part of Christ when he, in his omniscience, knew that he wouldn't be coming back right away? But that is your attitude isn't it?
     
    #15 DHK, Feb 27, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2008
  16. Sgt. Fury

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    Didn't Titus offer a pig on the altar of the Temple during the overthrow of Jerusalem in AD 70? That would be the abomination of desecration in the lifetime of the disciples to whom Jesus spoke.

    Language such as is cited above in Is 19:1 is figurative in nature. I call it "prophetic doom language. Sun, moon, and stars are not literal. Rememberwhen Joseph dreamed that the sun, moon and stars all bowed down before him? His family understood that these represented his father, mother, and brothers.

    A literal fulfillment of prophetic doom language is not required.
     
  17. BobRyan

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    The "post-rapture future tribulation" that you have "imagined into the text" in true eisegetical fashion would have been LONG after the lives of the disciples had ended "by every measure". In which case the Matt 10 instructions could not even APPLY TO THEM AT ALL using the extreme version of eisegesis you are attempting in Matt 10.

    But if we look at the actual words in Matt 10 instead the "snippet then jump to an imaginary future post-rapture trib" tactic -- we "see" that in Matt 10 Christ starts with the commission of the 12 to go out on a missionary-evangelistic mission then and there "heal the sick, raise the dead, cast out demons, preach the Gospel" AND this is followed by the prediction that in THEIR missionary efforts THEY will face persecution.

    When Jesus said "he who endures to the end" he does not mean "He among you today who lives for the entire 2000 years of future history and remains faithful".

    He does not mean "pay no attention to this Disciples because now I want to address HE who is BORN at the end of time and who then endures for that end-time period".

    Rather He REALLY means to speak TO those disciples TELLING THEM to endure what they will be suffeirng firm until the end of their lives.

    These are Words of Christ NOT to be ignored by THEM OR by US - applicable to THEM AND to us possibly to a lesser degree than THEM!

    ALL of them DID face persecution and in fact ALL BUT ONE was martyred in "true tribulation style".

    In fact "the MORE detail" that we include from this very chapter - the more constrast we get to the eisegetical curve ball attempted in that quote of yours.

    Wouldn't you agree?

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #17 BobRyan, Feb 28, 2008
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  18. BobRyan

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    That is a discussion in Matt 24 -- it is not in the pre-missionary journey comission speach Christ gives in Matt 10 as he sends the 12 out on their fiirst missionary project.

    His words apply to all Christians in every age who engage in evangelism and who are destined for opposition in doing so.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  19. Sgt. Fury

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    Agreed. The abomination of desecration had been brought up earlier,

    and I was commenting on the tangent.

    Can you believe it? The conversation was wandering!:laugh:
     
  20. DHK

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    They were martyred Bob. Does that mean they didn't endure to the end? How do we know for sure? In that last fleeting hour of torturous death what was going through their minds. Perhaps they recanted then. You don't know. Maybe they didn't endure and maybe they did. Your theology has too many holes in it. You don't know if they endured to the end--not even if the very Apostles endured to the end. The only conclusion one can conclude from your theology is that right up to the very end Jesus had disciples that were unsure of their salvation, possibly were all unsaved, and possibly all recanted at death.

    When one believes in OSAS, that which the Scriptures teaches it leaves no room for such nonsense. It is Christ that keeps us to the end. I don't have to keep myself, but Christ keeps me.

    Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

    Notice the above words: Chrisw performs this work of salvation until the day of Christ, that is until he comes again. Christ keeps my salvation in his hand. I don't work for it. You have described a works based salvation no different than the RCC.

    Even if we stick to the very literal interpretation of Mat.10, here is what we get.
    1. He is speaking to his disciples only, as is indicated in the first few verses of the chapter.
    2. He is sending them on a missionary journey.
    3. He is warning them of persecution that they will endure.
    4. His disciples are already saved. He did not call unsaved individuals. It is not referring to spiritual salvation.
    5. "He that endures to the end," is thus speaking of a physical salvation from the persecution that they would endure. If they would endure that persecution they would be saved physically and return to him on that very missionary journey, which they did.

    That is the literal interpretation of that chapter.

    But we do find the exact same verse in Mat.24 which is used in an eschatological context. It is that verse that one must look at in more detail.
     

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