What is prooftexting?

Prooftexting, that is, using isolated, out-of-context quotations from the Bible to mislead others about Christianity is as old as the Bible itself.  Even the Devil tried that with Jesus when he told our Lord to jump from a high place because angels would protect him.

Today it seems in vogue among those eager to demonstrate something malicious about God to quote Old Testament snippets without context, framing them as directives to Christians today. Numbers 31 is a good example. Dishonest debaters ignore preceding verses so they can imply God is some sort of homicidal misogynist who loves killing women just for the sake of it.  They conveniently leave out verses that say the Midianite women didn’t simply turn from God, but actively enticed God’s people to join them in their rebellion. They also seem to forget this is a directive given to a specific group of God’s people in response to actions taken by a specific group of God’s enemies. It is disingenuous, or complete ignorance, to suggest that Numbers directs Christians to go out and kill women.

Rather than judge God’s word by those who purposely misrepresent it’s message, wouldn’t it be better to read it first hand and ask God to show you it’s meaning?

What are your thoughts?

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