IV. The Holy Scriptures
4. We believe in the plenary inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, by which we understand the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments, given by divine inspiration, inerrantly revealing the will of God concerning us in all things necessary to our salvation, so that whatever is not contained therein is not to be enjoined as an article of faith.
What is the Bible?
- The Bible is the Word of God revealing God. It is the story of God and the story of how this great relates to His creation. The Bible tells God story.
- The Bible shows us God’s plan and purpose.
- It’s primary purpose is not to be a history book, although there are historical elements to it. But even within the historical elements of the Bible the bigger and larger message within those events is the activity of God and God’s activity with his people.
Luke 24:44-48: 44 Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, 46 and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things.
- Scripture as a whole is “revealing Jesus Christ.”
- It has been said that all of the Old Testament is written to look forward to Jesus, and that all of the New Testament is written to explain Jesus. In so doing, both portions of Scripture look to the central salvation event of Christ on the cross.
- We believe that not only was Scripture inspired in the writing, but that God has inspired the copying, translation, reading and interpreting of His Word, so that when “our eyes are opened” we can fully understand God’s will for us.
- It is important when we come to scripture that we seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance and inspiration, that our eyes might also be opened.
- I believe that until our “eyes are opened” to the Word of God we are not going to fully grasp what the Scriptures are trying to tell us. The scriptures speak a different word to the believer rather than the non-believer.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4: Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, 2 through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain. 3 For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, 4 and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures,
- Here Paul is stating that the Scripture exist to tell the Gospel story that Christ dies for sins.
- The main objective for the bible is to tell the redemptive story of Jesus Christ… the Bible is “inerrant” in doing this. We can spend so much time debating that which the Bible does or doesn’t say or debating the small details of which the Bible may or may not explain, but we forget that those small details are not the primary purpose of the bible.
2 Timothy 3:14-17: 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, 15 and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work.
- The Bible is not some source of “entertainment,” although parts of it may be enjoyable to read.
- While it is educational, The Bible is not intended to only be some source of education.
- The Bible is not something that is to be read only so we can “feel good” about ourselves.
- We read the Bible so that we can encounter the Living God and be changed into His image.
- When we are transformed into His image, we are giving the ability to do His good work…not just in our lives, but also good work in the lives of others.