The Bible is Divine and Inspired

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Introduction

The Bible is inspired by God.  It is essential to support this claim with specific and assertive points that give one the authority in which they can arrive at this conclusion.  “The Bible claims to be divine communication.”[1]  Through this deduction, it is pertinent to explore the reasons why one must believe this, and conclude that the “Bible’s inspiration preserves divine revelation for God’s People.”[2]

Normative

Because the authors of the Bible were real, historical people, and the human condition has not changed since the creation of Adam followed by his fall from grace, we are to conclude that the Bible is normative in relation to all people, as it transcends its messages from the past, into the present, and onto future periods in human history.  “Because it is authored by humans in specific contexts, certain teachings may be contextually limited; but because Scripture is divinely inspired, the underlying principles are normative and applicable for the church in every age.”[3]  Through this, the church will be able to “discover truth and its ramifications for the answers to life’s ultimate questions,”[4] as well as a barometer to live in tandem with God’s foundations by living according to His purposes.

Inerrant

Even though the word “inerrant” does not exist in the Bible, it does in fact claim to be flawless and an inspiration from God and moved by the Holy Spirit.[5]  The Psalmist states, “And the words of the LORD are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times,” (Psalm 12:6, NIV). “God’s involvement in the process of inscripturation, that period of time in which the entirety of the Scriptures came into being, demonstrates that those Scriptures ultimately come from him.”[6]  If God directly interacted with human authors in the Bible, then we are to conclude that not only is it inerrant and complete in truth, but it is also completely flawless in every word.

Fulfilled Prophecy

There are a multitude of fulfilled prophecies in the Bible which were documented both in foresight and in hindsight.  From the various messages concerning the oracles of the fall of the Northern Kingdom to the Assyrians, to the demise of Judea and Solomon’s temple by the Babylonian army under King Nebuchadnezzar, along with the cryptic and seemingly obvious messages about the apex of scriptural authenticity in the advent, ministry, crucifixion, resurrection and ascension of the prophesied Messiah Jesus Christ, we are left to conclude that the Bible is true to prophetic fulfillment.  When Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down,” (Matthew 24:2, NIV), we clearly know through the works of Josephus, that this particular piece to this prophecy was consummated in full. “The meaning of the events of AD 70 provided by Jesus is as Jewish as that given by the historian Josephus.”[7]

Objections

Along with the veracity of scriptural authenticity, there are likely going to be objections to it being divinely inspired.  Dr. Bart Erhman, Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, “argues that early Christian scribes, copying in a context of competing theological views, each vying for survival in the early church, intentionally changed Biblical texts to reflect their own theological convictions.”[8]  Another contention to Biblical authenticity and inspiration is from Walter Bauer, who “concluded that early Christianity was characterized by doctrinal diversity.”[9]  One of the great debates on this side of the Reformation is the problem in the Synoptic Gospels.  Called the “Synoptic Problem,” this is described as the differences and discrepancies in the Gospels’ details surrounding various events of Jesus’ ministry.  “Because of differences such as this, questions have arisen about what the inspired authors of each Gospel really intended to convey about the life of Jesus.”[10]

Conclusion

Although there are scant objections to the Bible’s inspired authority, the evidence that it is a divine text greatly outweighs it, as these claims are nonetheless critically counteracted by a multitude of theologians, giving Scripture a fundamental authority over any other text in history.  It can only be concluded that the Bible is true to its word, normative for the church for all time, and a reliable text for prophetic fulfilment, so that the people of God can be confident that it is comprehensively divine, and plenary in form and prose.

[1] Daniel L. Akin, “A Theology for The Church,” (Nashville, B&H Publishing Group, 2014), 106.

[2] Ibid., 132.

[3] Ibid., 132.

[4] Ibid., 133

[5] 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21.

[6] Grisanti, Michael A. “Inspiration, Inerrancy, and the OT Canon: The Place of Textual Updating in an Inerrant View of Scripture.” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 44, no. 4 (12, 2001): 577, http://ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/211197951?accountid=12085.

[7] den Hollander, William. “Jesus, Josephus, and the Fall of Jerusalem: On Doing History with Scripture.” Hervormde Teologiese Studies 71, no. 1 (2015): 7, http://ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1738751500?accountid=12085.

[8] Daniel L. Akin, “A Theology for The Church,” (Nashville, B&H Publishing Group, 2014), 143-144.

[9] Ibid., 143.

[10] Towns and Gutierrez, “The Essence of the New Testament,” (Nashville, B&H Publishing, 2012), 38.

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