The Bible Alone

The Bible Alone January 11, 2014

As some conservative Christian leaders recently emphasized, inerrancy is a key doctrine.

If you adhere to it, it can have a detrimental effect on all your other beliefs, and throw your entire worldview out of whack…

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  • TomS

    One might, I suppose, respond that the great creeds of the Church take second place to the Bible. Ask rather, where does the Bible give authority to the creeds?

  • TomS

    One of the people quoted in this article said:

    As a Christian university, we must undergird what God has put in place through Scripture, which is the family, the church and the state

    I am curious about the Biblical basis for this. How has God put in place the family, the church and the state through Scripture?

  • When someone says he holds to inerrancy of the Bible, it gives me a general sense of what he thinks about the Bible. When, however, some says, as you do, that he doesn’t hold to inerrancy, I only know what he doesn’t believe about the Bible – not what he does believe about it. Is there a term that succinctly, if only generally, describes your point of view about the Bible?

    • TomS

      I don’t know what a person thinks of the Bible when they say that they hold to Biblical inerrancy. Does it mean that, for example, when the Bible clearly states something about the natural world which reflects common belief of the Ancient Near East rather than what we have learned since then – does it mean that that ANE belief is correct and modern understanding is wrong? As in the case of geocentrism.

      I am sorry, but the impression I get of “Biblical inerrancy” is more like this: Whatever I happen to want to believe I can find a proof-text for that. As in the case of the denial of evolutionary biology, where it is obvious that the Bible has no concern with species – in particular their relationships with one another.

      On the other hand, I do understand when someone says that the Bible is a
      big, complex book deserving of study and that there are no easy slogans to capture what results one should expect from that study.

      • I’m inclined to agree. Rarely does anyone mean by “inerrancy” something that corresponds in a straightforward way to the natural meaning of that term – note the death of a thousand qualifications expressed in the infamous Chicago Declaration on Biblical Inerrancy.

        I myself view the Bible as a collection of human texts. To add some clarification that illustrates how this matches up with some of the Bible’s own language about Scriptures/writings, if one encounters the divine through these texts, it is because, as 2 Timothy puts it, God breathes life into them, not because the texts themselves are meant to be a focus or end in and of themselves.