Vol.XIX No.III Pg.8
May 1982

Stuff About Things

Robert F. Turner

From Applied Imagination, by Alex F. Osborn, we borrow this beauty: "What is a double petunia? A petunia is a flower like a begonia. A begonia is a meat like a sausage. A sausage-and-battery is a crime. Monkeys crime trees. Tree's a crowd. A crow crowed in the morning and made a noise. A noise is on your face between your eyes. Eyes is opposite from nays. A colt nays. You go to bed with a colt, and wake up in the morning with a case of double petunia."

Unmistakably logical; if you don't mind taking words out of context, assigning meanings on a "sound alike" or "spelled alike" basis — and make each choice to suit your own purpose. I suppose (I hope) most brethren see the absurdity of the above illustration, but if they do I wonder why the illogical and non-contextual use of scriptures is tolerated.

"The seed is the word of God" (Lu. 8:11). But before seed can produce the ground must be ploughed, so we read 1 Cor. 9:10 "he that plougheth should plough in hope." Then, we must plant the seed — Rom. 6:5, "for if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death..." The seed needs water, Jn. 4:7 "There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water..." and so, on we go. When the "sermon"(?) is finished someone says, "He sure did use a lot of Bible in his lesson."

It would have been far better had he simply read the parable of the sower (Lu. 8:) including Christ's own explanation — and stopped there, without a single word of comment.

Although we may admire one for his effort, even quoting a large number of scriptures only proves he knows the words. But it is the thought, the application of the words, that must be planted in our hearts. A complete section of scripture, read or quoted, will make more sense than scattered passages, illogically grouped. Sometimes we forget that Paul (speaking by the Holy Spirit) makes his own well arranged and logical lessons.

We believe brethren are doing better along this line than in former years — are learning to have greater respect for careful exegesis — but we must continue to discourage careless use of the message from heaven.