I had a commenter on this blog suggest that 2 Timothy 3:16 says “All scripture comes from the mouth of God”.
The actual statement there refers to all writings being “God-breathed” – or perhaps the usefulness of “every God-breathed writing.” There has been a lot of debate about how that phrase should best be translated, and what it means.
It struck me that people insist that that statement as they understand it declares “the Bible” inerrant or something like that. And yet there was no “Bible” in this period – certainly not one that included a New Testament. And so are we to understand that God’s inerrant Word fails to provide us with an authoritative list of contents, and that it affirms its own inerrancy in rather ambiguous and at times downright clumsy expressions?
The truth is that the people who claim that the Bible is inerrant are looking for texts that will allow them to claim that the Bible is what they think it ought to be. And they would be better off studying it more and taking seriously what it actually is.