They say that the most important thing to consider when making a real estate purchase is the location. You've probably heard the saying, "Location, location, location"!!
There is a similar saying by those who are students of theology and the Bible that has everything to do with the context of a passage of Scripture: "Context, context, context"!
Imagine, for example, the person who picks up the Bible and randomly flips it open to a page while looking for "advice from God". They point there finger to no particular sentence and read the words, "... and Judas went out and hanged himself ..." Yikes!
Then, in an effort to give the exercise a second chance, more pages are flipped and the finger is thrown to some area of the open book. The words now read, "... go and do likewise ..." Ouch! The future may not be so bright for this guy!!
Understanding the context of what we read in the Bible is a massive part of comprehending not only what it trying to be communicated by the author, but on the implications and applications of it in our lives here and now. It's one of the reasons that reading entire books of the Bible (it is made of of 66 of them) is a really healthy discipline to get into.
I saw this very fun, fan-made, preview trailer for the old Disney movie, Mary Poppins, earlier today. It is all actual clips from the movie, but put together in a "creative way". It makes the classic children's film look like a horror flick and, in doing so, reminds us of the importance of looking at Scripture in light of the larger context, rather than flipping pages and pointing as a means of trying to learn and grasp what the Bible has to say ...
I hope the point is clear ... go grab a Bible and trying consuming entire books within it this summer, rather than nibbling at random bits and pieces.