Radio personality, Paul Harvey, used to have a segment of his show which he called “The Rest of the Story”. In it he often presented historical vignettes whose outcomes were generally known by most of his listeners. What he then did was to set forth the little known events that led up to these occurrences, thus he set forth the “rest of the story”.
It is quite common for various religious teachers to set forth their theology by using parts of various scriptures which, when taken alone, might purport to lend credence to their errant doctrines, when in reality they leave off “the rest of the story” which sets forth the whole truth which is often inconvenient to their own perverted theories. Taking scriptures out of their proper context and ignoring parts of them is to “handle the word of GOD deceitfully.” When a lie is told often enough, even those who tell it can start to believe it is the truth.
Paul declared that he renounced such practices and plainly told the Ephesian elders, “For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.” (Act 20:27) His desire was to manifest the truth, knowing that the plain truth is its own defense and does not need the sophistry and eloquence of men in order for it to stand. Thus he said to the Corinthians, “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.” (1Cor 2:4)
Here are a few “scriptures” that are often partially quoted and subsequently, have their true meaning and import misrepresented. Generally the scriptural doctrines which are most ignored by this practice, are those having to do with the absolute sovereignty of GOD in the salvation of HIS elect bride. Instead of magnifying the glory of HIS grace, these perverters of truth seek to promote the notion that the enjoyment of salvation is a product of the free will of men.
“GOD is not willing that any should perish”. This “quotation” is set forth to prove that GOD is “trying or hoping” to save all men. The actual truth of the scripture is plainly revealed by reading the whole passage. “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. “(2Pet 3:9) The “us” of whom Peter is speaking are the exact same ones to whom he addressed his epistle. He is clearly speaking of those who are referred to as the beloved. (see II Pet.1:1; 3:1) GOD is not willing that any of HIS elect should perish and will bring them all to repentance and faith.
“Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” This “quotation is true enough, but it is partially quoted in order to prove that GOD is bound to save all who make a profession of faith. Those who leave off the “rest of the story” would do so in order to deny the election of grace. The whole scripture is, “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6:37) Those who are given to CHRIST in sovereign election are the exact same ones who come to HIM and are never cast out of HIS presence.
“All things work together for good”. Once again this “partial truth” is set forth in a manner to deny the specific love of GOD for HIS elect people. The whole scripture reads, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” (Rom 8:28-30) HIS purpose is clearly set out to be the conformity of the “elect” (those whom HE foreknew (i.e.;loved) and called) to CHRIST. Thus HE causes all things to work in concert for their benefit and ultimate blessing.
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12) Here is another passage which is true enough as it is quoted, but by ignoring the verse which follows it, the “power” is purported to be the “free-will of man to receive it. When we read the following verse, “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:13), it is clear that the power to receive and believe, is bestowed by the operation of the “new birth”, which is not the product of flesh and blood, nor “free-will”, but is rather the work of GOD HIMSELF. Even as the LORD described it to Nicodemus. “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” (John 3:7-8)
“Whosoever will may come.” This is a complete misstatement of what the scripture actually says. “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” (Rev 22:17) The SPIRIT and the bride both repeat in concert, “Even so come, LORD JESUS”. Then to those who are “made willing” (“Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power.”(Psa 110:3)) at the appearing of CHRIST, the command of the LORD is thus, “let him take the water of life freely”; who are also the same ones who “hear” and “thirst” after HIM.
“The LORD is knocking at your heart’s door.” This is also a complete misrepresentation of a specific message delivered to the Laodicean Church in the Revelation. The LORD is addressing those who are HIS, in this church, (i.e.; assembly) in Laodicea. HE says, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” (Rev 3:20) In doing so HE is speaking to those who “hear” HIS voice and is announcing HIS intention to “sup with them”. In order to “hear”, a man must be born again. All of these admonitions and exhortations are given to those “who have an ear to hear”. “If any man have an ear, let him hear.” (Rev 13:9)
“Whosoever shall call upon the name of the LORD shall be saved.” This is an exact quotation of Paul from the book of Romans. It is purported by the “partial quoters” to be stating that any man can be “saved” at any time he desires simply by making a decision to call on the LORD. Yet when one reads the verse before it; “For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him” (Rom 10:12); it is clear that he is referring to the fact that the LORD is not a respecter of persons insofar as nationality is concerned. (see Rev.5:9)
He goes on to clarify that, only, those who “hear” shall call upon HIM in whom they are caused to believe. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Rom 10:17) This “faith” is the gift of GOD and not a work of man, lest he should boast of having it. (see Eph.2:8,9) Nothing is more common than empty professions of faith and religious activity which is sometimes described as “calling on the name of the LORD”. “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” (Mat 7:21)mam