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A proof text is a passage of scripture presented as proof for a theological doctrine, belief, or principle.[1] Prooftexting (sometimes "proof-texting" or "proof texting") is the practice of using quotations from a document, either for the purpose of exegesis, or to establish a proposition in eisegesis (introducing one's own presuppositions, agendas, or biases). Such quotes may not accurately reflect the original intent of the author,[2] and a document quoted in such a manner, when read as a whole, may not support the proposition for which it was cited.[3][4][5][6] The term has currency primarily in theological and exegetical circles.

This is to be distinguished from quotations from a source deemed a hostile witness, which inadvertently substantiate a point beneficial to the quoter in the course of its own narrative. Even when lifted out of context, those facts still stand.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Definition of PROOF TEXT". Retrieved 2019-09-19.
  2. ^ "The Use of a Doctrinal Catechism in Sunday-School Instruction: A Symposium", Jesse L. Hurlbut et al; The Biblical World, Vol. 16, No. 3 (Sept 1900); retrieved via JSTOR
  3. ^ "Problem with Proof-Texting". Covenant of Love. 2010-03-24. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  4. ^ "problems with proof-texting (1)". Peripatetic Learning. 2010-08-04. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  5. ^ "Is Bible Verse Proof-Texting Problematic?". Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  6. ^ McDonough, Kathy (2012-07-19). "The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse, Chapter 7: Abuse and Scripture". Recovering Grace. Retrieved 2013-11-14.