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“IT IS WRITTEN AGAIN”
These words of our Saviour addressed to the tempter, suggest incidentally a very important lesson for all christians.
The devil in his assault upon Jesus had just quoted from the Scripture, saying, “It is written” thus and so. Very well replies Jesus, suppose it is written as you say—”It is written again;” i.e., the Scripture contains something else besides what you have quoted. From these words of our Lord, “It is written again,” we gather a principle which ought to govern us in our doctrinal use of the Scripture. We cannot safely found either doctrine or practice on an isolated passage of Scripture. One passage cannot be interpreted independently of other Scripture. Here lies our only safety from the most monstrous errors. We must go, not to a solitary passage, but to the whole Scripture to learn what is the will of God. There is a unity in the Scripture like the unity of the human body. One part balances another. One part requires another part to complete it. One portion of Scripture needs to be explained by other portions. When a man or a sect quotes an isolated passage as the basis of some absurd doctrine or practice, our reply must be, “It is written again.” There are other Scriptures besides that which you have quoted and your Scripture must be interpreted in harmony with the remainder of the Scripture. You take a single passage of Scripture out of its connection, and give it a distorted use and claim that you have God’s truth. But that is the way the devil uses Scripture. He would gladly acknowledge the authority of the Scripture if he could be permitted unrebuked to use it as he chose, and handle it deceitfully. Most of those errors which the church of Christ brands as heresies are simply one sided, exaggerated truths. They are torn out of their connection with counter truths.
— September, 1880 —