The Inerrancy of Scripture

I took the following quote from Voddie Baucham. If you have never heard this man preach, then you are missing out. He really knows what he is talking about. Here is his quote:

“I choose to believe the Bible because it is a reliable collection of historical documents written down by eyewitnesses during the lifetime of other eyewitnesses that report supernatural events which took place in fulfillment of specific prophesies and claim to be divine rather than human in origin.”

This quote looks to be an answer to the question: How come you believe the Bible? Is the Bible accurate?

Obviously, since this is Mr. Baucham’s quote, most of this blog will come from what he said. However, I will start with this. I have been accused of using circular reasoning to defend the Bible. People will say you can’t defend the Bible with the Bible.

Let me be real clear here. I will never defend the Bible. The Bible does not need a defense. It will defend itself if you look intellectually at it. As Charles Spurgeon put it,

“Scripture is like a lion. Who ever heard of defending a lion? Just turn it loose; it will defend itself.”

Now back to the main question, is the Bible inerrant? The answer is yes, and here is a passage from 2 Peter to support it.

For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. 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.

– 2 Peter 1:16-21 (ESV)

“…A reliable collection of historical documents written down by eyewitnesses during the lifetime of other eyewitnesses …”

Look at 2 Peter, it says they did not follow cleverly devised myths (another translation says ‘tales’). These authors wrote the Bible based on historical events that they saw with their own eyes, or was recounted to them by other eyewitnesses. They didn’t write based on myths or tales, but actual events.

“…that report supernatural events which took place in fulfillment of specific prophesies…”

The authors of the Bible wrote of supernatural events, not just superhuman events. For example, Jesus healing the man’s withered hand (Matt. 12:13); Jesus walked on the water (Matt. 14:25); when Jesus healed the blind men (Matt. 9:29-30). Finally of course, the fulfillment of the prophesy of crucifixion in Psalm 22. This was written a thousand years before Jesus was born and it was fulfilled. So the authors wrote about events that they saw, and were writing about fulfilled prophesy.

“…claim to be divine rather than human in origin.”

In verse 20 and 21 of 2 Peter, “knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God…” No prophesy can be fulfilled by a human. No prophesy comes from human interpretation, it is only from God.

The Bible is inerrant. Yes, it was penned by men, but it was inspired by God. There are many “arguments” that can come from this. One example: someone might say, since it was penned by men, then it must be disregarded because it is inaccurate. Well, using this logic, all books must be disregarded. The last time I checked, all books were written by men (and women). So if that’s the argument, it has no logic to it.

The question of is the Bible accurate and why do you believe it is an intelligent question and deserves an intelligent response. It is not enough to say something like well I believe it because I believe it, or I am a Southern Baptist and that is how we believe. A Christian has to stand ready to give a reason for the hope that is in them (1 Peter 3:15).

Again, the quote at the beginning comes from Voddie Baucham and then of course most of the breakdown of it comes from his explanation because it is not my quote, however, it is a wonderful answer to the question of why I believe the bible, therefore I am now using it. I encourage you to check out brother Baucham.

– Adam Smith

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6 thoughts on “The Inerrancy of Scripture

  1. This is a good post Adam. This old argument has been around for ages and is spouted of those who do not possess the Spirit of Truth ‘you can’t use the bible to prove the bible’.

    To which point you are correct, “the bible needs none to defend it” its truth is sufficient for it’s on work. One who doubts the word of God will still not believe even in the midst of evidence.

    Although I have found that the bible does resound its truth and evidence to those who diligently seek Him in it. Case in point, the Lord sent Isaiah to validate this truth, ‘that He would teach His people knowledge and that He would make them to learn doctrine. I would be taught precept upon precept and line upon line. [Isaiah 28:9-11]

    It is a sweet thing to find how the truths of the old illuminate those of the new, so that the man of God can only shake his head at the amazement of God and the truth of His word. When He shall come He shall bring all things to recollection,

    Study to show thyself approved unto God!

    malachi

  2. Laz says:

    The argument is nearly as old as humanity itself. One only needs to recall the tempter’s words, “Hath God really said…?” to be reminded of this.

    Well, using this logic, all books must be disregarded. The last time I checked, all books were written by men (and women). So if that’s the argument, it has no logic to it.

    I like what CS Lewis said about this,

    Every historical statement in the world is believed on authority. None of us has seen the Norman Conquest or the defeat of the Armada. None of us could prove them by pure logic as you prove a thing in mathematics.

    We believe them simply because people who did see them have left writings that tell us about them: in fact, on authority.

    A man who jibbed at authority in other things as some people do in religion would have to be content to know nothing all his life.

    The reason people “jib” at the Bible’s authority is because if true then things are going to have to change, the same cannot be said of other historical truths. In the case of the sacred Scriptures, if true, then there is a new sheriff in town and the outlaws simply will not acquiesce to his rule.

    Any dialogue I have with a skeptic always seems to take me back to 1 Corinthians 2:14,

    But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.

    The natural man, yes I remember those days though not with fondness but with pity at the poor wretch that I was though I did not realize it. Thanks be to Jesus Christ Our Lord.

  3. Anon. says:

    Actually, the top #1 reason people criticize the “inerrancy” of the Bible is that it’s *internally contradictory*.

    If it had, for instance, a coherent story of the Flood (how many of each ritual clean animal were taken aboard? Two or seven?), it would be a lot more convincing. (Or perhaps you’re from an obscure sect I’ve never heard of which believes there were *two* Floods? That does work.)

    And, for that matter, if you believe all the Gospels, Jesus is descended from King David — via his natural father, Joseph. (Perhaps you’re from another obscure sect I’ve never heard of which believes that Jesus had two natural fathers, Joseph and God? That does work, sort of.)

    There are quite a few other examples of multiple, contradicting stories in Genesis and to a lesser extent Exodus. The four Gospels (and to some extent Acts) contradict each other repeatedly. Some of the stories in Chronicles and in Kings overlap, but contradict each other in details. For a more esoteric example, if read in the original Hebrew and the original Greek, the description in the New Testament of the supposed fulfillment by Jesus of some of the prophecies in the Old Testament turns out not to match the actual prophecies in the Old Testament.

    This settles the question quite definitively: the Bible has errors in it, so it is not “inerrant”. (“Inerrant” means “no errors”.) It has truth in it, but it also has falsehoods in it; anyone who doesn’t admit that simply *hasn’t bothered to read it*. You do yourself no credit by backing an unsupportable position. The view that the Bible was *inspired* by God but written by *falliable men* — in other words, the view that the Bible is *not inerrant* — makes a lot more sense.

  4. Adam Smith says:

    I do not see my position as unsupportable. All of these “supposed contradictions” in the Bible are not really contradictions if you get down to the core of their meaning.

    These examples that you have stated do not in fact violate the Law of Noncontradiction, whether it be in the ontological, doxastic or semantic sense.

    Other examples can be analyzed using the “paradox rule” (in the sense that an apparent contradiction actually expresses a non-dual truth)

    If you really get down to studying the logic and philosophy of the verses, going in some cases back to the Hebrew text, any supposed contradiction in the Bible is really not a contradiction at all.

    I am not going to throw around terms recklessly like you are from an obscure sect or anything like that. I appreciate your comment, and I appreciate the challenge to think at 7:00 in the morning.

  5. I can appreciate anon’s thought process, as I did not come to the saving knowledge of Christ until I was 28-years old. I was raised in religion and heard the stories of the bible, but that is all they were, stories, fairy tales of sorts.

    Only when I was born again in 1985 and the recipient of the Spirit of Truth, did the stories of the bible began to take on new life. Truly the word of God did become alive.. “it is quick, powerful, sharper than a two-edged sword”. It did not take me long to figure out that the bible had not changed, it is the same yesterday, today and forever. The reason the bible had become alive is that I now had ‘ears to hear what the Spirit saith’.

    I would liken anon’s defense of the scripture’s seeming contradictions to this. If I were to post a picture of Adam in a three-piece suit with a clean-shaven head, one might think this is not Adam at all, based upon how we see him in his avatar; hoodie with his catawampus peace sign. Does the contradiction of the image in the picture justify ones thoughts that both are not Adam?

    When an individual finds himself/herself before the mirror of God’s word and having ears of the Spirit, there is not any creature that is not manifest in his sight: all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do; He that hath ears to hear, let them hear.

    malachi

  6. Lee Stewart says:

    While it is hard to accept everything that the Bible states, at the bottom of it, we must! When we go down the road of using 21st century eyes on scripture, we are in danger of tying ourselves up in knots & the Devil knows it!

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