Biblical Authority: The Final Word Tricia Scribner
Inspiration The Holy Spirit superintended Biblical writers as they composed and recorded His message to mankind according to their unique personalities and styles without error or omission.
How much of the Bible is inspired: doctrine? Historical parts? Scientific information? How much of the Bible is inspired: doctrine? Historical parts? Scientific information? Does inspiration apply just to ideas or to the words? Does inspiration apply just to ideas or to the words? How were the words and concepts transmitted to paper? How were the words and concepts transmitted to paper? Questions:
Which is most accurate? * The Bible contains the Word of God. * The Bible becomes the Word of * The Bible becomes the Word of God. God. * The Bible is the Word of God. * The Bible is the Word of God.
Seven Views of Inspiration Illumination View: Illumination View: The Spirit illuminated the understanding of prophets and apostles, as with all saints, just more intense. Problem: Finite man determines what and where God is speaking!
Intuition View: Intuition View: The Bible is just the scratchpad of religious geniuses who have more natural insight into truth. Problem: Presupposes that God does not communicate with man.
Existential View: Existential View: The Bible becomes the Word of God at the point a meaningful encounter with the reader. Problem: Fails to recognize God is speaking (objective) whether man is listening (subjective) or not.
Demythologizing View: Demythologizing View: Strip away the myth added by the church and tradition to get beyond errors to the truth. Problem: If miracles aren’t true, how can we trust the rest of the Bible?
Mechanical Dictation View: The Bible text was dictated by God as the law was to Moses. Problem: This view contradicts many Scriptures that demonstrate human (as well as divine) authorship.
Dynamics View: General thoughts, but not specific words were given. Problem: Destroys inerrancy because if authors were free to express themselves, who guarded them from error? We cannot communicate thoughts without words.
Plenary Verbal View: Plenary: Plenary: How wide is inspiration? How wide is inspiration? All, the whole Bible— Every part is equally inspired. Verbal: How deep is inspiration? How deep is inspiration? Down to the very word! Down to the very word!
Basis for Plenary Verbal Inspiration 2 T imothy 3:16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. 2 Peter 1:20-21 Knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. 21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
God Divine Author Writings Inspired Writers Carried 2 Tim 3:16 Scripture was “breathed out ” 2 Peter 1:20-21 Writers were “carried along- superintended” by Spirit Scripture—The Very Words of God
Infallibility Inerrancy Infallibility Inerrancy “The quality of neither misleading nor being misled.” “The quality of being free from all falsehood or mistake.” Can the Bible be infallible but not inerrant? Only if the terms are redefined! Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy “Refers to the truthfulness of Scripture in matters of faith and practice.” “Includes all the phenomena of Scripture,not just matters of faith and practice.” Caution! Stephen Davis
Inerrancy Inerrancy Canonical Scripture is free from all falsehood or mistake and is entirely true and trustworthy in all its assertion. Based on Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy
Inerrancy: What Does it Mean? Inerrancy: What Does it Mean? Absolute Inerrancy *Fully true *Writers intended scientific/historical data to be exact. Full Inerrancy *Fully true *Writers used popular descriptions and approximations. Limited Inerrancy *Inerrant only in matters of faith and practice. *Errors elsewhere. Inerrancy of Purpose *Purpose is to bring people into fellowship with God, not share truths. *Accomplishes purpose inerrantly. Accommodated Revelation *Bible came through human channels so it has errors in science, history, faith, and practice. Inerrancy Irrelevant *The term “inerrancy” is negative, not biblical, divisive and detracts church from hearing God.
“The Holy Bible…has God for its author,…and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy.” Baptist Faith and Message 2000
“CANON” “CANON” 1. The word “canon” comes from the Greek kanon, meaning “reed,” and metaphorically, “standard.” 2. By the second century AD (100s) the word came to mean “rule of faith” or “statement of belief.” 3. About 350 AD the word began to be used to refer to the body of writings known as the Bible. 4. Since the Council of Carthage in AD 397, the Christian church has considered the Biblical canon of 66 books complete.
How Were Books Included in the Canon? “God makes a book canonical by inspiring it; the Church merely recognizes (or discovers) its canonicity” Dr. George Chok “Whatever is given by inspiration of God is scripture; whatever is not given by inspiration of God is not scripture” Dr. George Chok The church did not determine which books were inspired; they discovered which books were inspired. The only true criterion of canonicity is inspiration by God.
Internal 1.The author assumes canonical authority as he writes. canonical authority as he writes. 2.Other Biblical writers treat as inspired. 3. Jesus regarded as inspired. External 1. Used by church 2. Scientific 3. Historical references : Evidence of Canonicity Evidence of Canonicity
Principles in Discovering Canonicity 1) Is it authoritative? Speaks w/ authority of God 2) Is it prophetic? By prophet or apostle (or “apostolic man”) 3) Is it authentic? Tells truth 4) Is it dynamic? Changes lives 5) Is it received? Generally accepted and used by the Church
*Motivations for establishing the Hebrew canon (end of first century A.D.): - - Fall of Jerusalem - - Jewish people scattered - - Temple ritual ceased Old Testament Canon
Canonicity: Chicago Statement of Faith “It appears the Old Testament canon had been fixed by the time of Jesus. The New Testament canon is likewise now closed inasmuch as no new apostolic witness to the historical Christ can now be borne.” Quoted by Dr. George Chok Quoted by Dr. George Chok
New Testament Canon *A primary motivation for establishing Christian (New Testament) canon: -Emergence of heretical groups publishing their own canons which included writings favorable to their views and excluded writings that did not support them *Timing: canon established by the end fo the fourth century
need to which writings are considered sacred and to protect them at all costs need to which writings are considered sacred and to protect them at all costs rise of Christianity: rise of Christianity: no longer considered just a minor no longer considered just a minor Jewish sect but now a major Jewish sect but now a major multi-national religious force multi-national religious force need to distinguish Jewish writing need to distinguish Jewish writing from Christian writings from Christian writings 2.3b
What Writings Did Jesus View as Sacred? In Luke 24:44 Jesus said, In Luke 24:44 Jesus said, “All things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and the Prophets, and the Psalms concerning Me” (NASV). 1. Christ not only considered the Old Testament canon (TaNaKh) complete, but also viewed it as divided into three sections! 2. He viewed this body of works as written about Him! 2 Peter 1:20-21 2 Peter 1:20-21 But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.
Apocryphal Books *Collection of Jewish ancient writings that show some similarities to Scripture, but were never accepted as a whole. *Added to the Bible by the Catholic Church Protestants do not believe they are canonical because: 1. They contain many historical/geographical errors. 2. They teach false doctrine inconsistent with Scripture. 3. They display “an artificiality of subject matter and styling” inconsistent with Scripture. 4. They lack divine characteristics such as “prophetic power and poetic and religious feeling.” 5. Jews as caretakes of Scripture never viewed as sacred. 6. Jerome did not accept them though a Catholic scholar.