4 Bible Verses People Almost Always Take Out of Context
Reading the Bible is a powerful way to hear God speaking to you. And when looking at the Bible as a whole, it’s an amazing way to see God’s character, love, and mercy.
But unfortunately, because everyone has their own perspectives and comes from different ways of life, it can be easy to take some Bible verses out of context.
One reason Bible verses are easily taken out of context is sometimes the original meaning of a Bible verse, when translated, can seem to change slightly, which is also one of the main reasons atheists try to claim the Bible contradicts itself.
Another reason it’s easy to take a verse out of context, is actually because the Bible is separated into chapters and verses. While having the Bible separated this way is very helpful when navigating through it, it can lead to people pulling out verses without looking how it fits into the entire chapter; which can lead to the verse being taken the wrong way.
In other words, when someone pulls a verse out of its chapter, it becomes much easier to make the words in that verse mean what they want them to instead of how they are meant to.
For these reasons, Bible verses are easily taken out of context. So instead of just looking at verses individually, we should always look at the full context of a verse in its chapter and then study the subject in the rest of the Bible to verify its meaning.
So let’s take a look at some of the verses that are almost always taken out of context and what they are supposed to mean.
1) Do not judge, or you too will be judged. ~Matthew 7:1
People often take this as we are supposed to turn a blind eye to sin; that we should accept other people’s sinful choices. This leaves the door wide open for people to make excuses for their sin and for Christian’s to not confront other people’s sin.
As you probably know, the Bible is quite clear that we shouldn’t purposely sin or accept sin. But we are to love our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:31). This brings up the famous saying, “Hate the sin, Love the sinner”. We all sin, but that doesn’t mean we should purposely sin or turn a blind eye to sinning.
In this verse, Jesus isn’t telling us to never judge; He’s telling us we need to repent our own sins and faults first. This way we aren’t being a hypocrite.
Here’s an example, if someone is committing adultery, they shouldn’t judge someone else who is telling a lie. Even though both are sins, how can someone judge another person when they too are sinning.
Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:5, “You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
We need to be free of our own sins before we point out someone else’s sin. And even after pointing out someone else’s sin, we should extend grace and love as we point them in the right direction.
2) And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. ~Romans 8:28
Many times people think this means God should provide only good for our lives if we love Him. So when something bad happens, such as a cancer diagnosis or a car accident, we can easily say, “God, why did you let this happen? You’re supposed to work things for my good.”
Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that. Bad things happen; it’s part of life. And we don’t always understand the reason or how anything good could come from it. And we may not even know in our life time. It may be our children’s life or grandchild’s life that good came from our struggles.
Billy Graham gives this example of how God works things together, “Many of us have some salt with our meals. Table salt is made up of both sodium and chloride. By itself, sodium is a deadly poison, and so is chloride. Put them together, and you have table salt. Salt flavors food, and a certain amount of salt is necessary for health and life. We cannot live without some salt in our systems. God can take things that are bad and put them in the crucible of His wisdom and love. He works all things together for good, and He gives us the glorious, wonderful promise that He will do so.” 
3) I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. ~Philippians 4:13
This verse is often seen as saying we can physically do or achieve anything if we believe in Christ.
Paul wrote this verse, but he isn’t saying you can do anything you want. Paul is saying we can endure all sufferings and downfalls if we place our hearts in Christ’s power and love.
We can see this in Philippians 4:11-12, where Paul says, “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”
Now, Paul wrote this while he was in prison. While there, he was very likely cold, hungry, and alone. But even with all that against him, he learned to be content.
So it’s better to think of this verse as “I can endure all things through Christ who gives me strength”.
4) But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. ~Matthew 5:39
In this section of the Bible, even though it may come off this way, Jesus isn’t telling us not to defend ourselves or to ignore sin.
Jesus is telling us that when someone insults you, don’t hurt them back. He’s telling us to be the bigger person and to leave any vengeance to God.
Jesus shows us this in 1 Peter 2:23, “When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly”.
We can’t control anyone else’s actions, but we can control our own.
Each of these verses is frequently taken out of context as many times they aren’t read with the entire chapter, other chapters that are on the same subject, or with looking at the Bible as a whole.
God’s word provides us with knowledge of God’s love and mercy.
But if we take Bible verses out of context, pick and choose which verses to follow, and decide what they mean without looking at the whole truth, we reduce the effectiveness of God speaking to us.