Saturday, March 17, 2007

Ordination 2, Art. 1a: Bibliology - Inspiration

I'm finally getting to that ordination paper I wrote about a good month ago. We'll see if I ever get it done. The second section of the ordination paper is my statement of faith. This is the first part of Article 1 of the EFCA Doctrinal Statement.
The Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, to be the inspired Word of God, without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for the salvation of men and the Divine and final authority for Christian faith and life.

This section, which will have to be edited for space purposes, and maybe content, only deals with inspiration, but I'd love your input. Better to get hammered now than in ordination council. Please advise, ask questions of clarification, etc...

Jesus is, first and foremost, the Word of God (Jn. 1.1-14), but we are not left without God’s Word because we were not present 2000 years ago. The Bible is the God inspired record pointing to, including, and extension of Jesus’ life and ministry. The Bible is a historical document, which clearly makes some grandiose claims. Particularly, the Bible uniformly testifies to its own inspiration, that it is of divine origin (2 Pt. 1.20-21; Acts 1.16). Making sure we know Scripture originates in God and not man, Paul says it is God-breathed in 2 Timothy 3.16, which evokes images of God breathing life into Adam (Gen. 2.7). Jesus views Scripture as permanent (Jn. 10.35; Mt. 5.18) and He makes room for further revelation through the disciples by the power of the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14.26; 16.12-14). Inspiration seems to be a mix of "dynamic” inspiration and dictation. Dictation is likely limited to those sections where it seems God is saying, “Write this…,” while more generally God is speaking through the mind and personality of a follower whom God has prepared for the task, including collecting resources to give a proper account (Luke 1.1-3). Notice that in 2 Pt. 1.20-21 the person is “moved,” and in 2 Tim. 3.16 the writings are inspired. The two are not contradictory, but instead go hand-in-hand. Furthermore, there is no “canon within the canon,” where direct quotes of God are weightier. NT authors regularly quote God as speaking from the OT when He was not the actually the one speaking, indicating the text was indeed God’s Word even if God did not say it directly (Mt. 19.4-5; Acts 4.25; Heb. 1.6-7). The extent of inspiration is exhaustive, as evidenced by the minute details of the OT used in NT argumentation (Mt. 22.32 – tense; Gal. 3.16 – singular).


biolasundevil said...

My thoughts and comments:

I am not sure how much you edited for space purposes, so you may have already expanded on a few ideas. In your ordination paper is your personal doctrinal statement presented in a bullet point format? If so, it would be easier to review with some additional formatting.

- I think I understand your point in the first sentence, but it was a little confusing. Were you trying to make the point that the Bible is a "living document" and even though we were not present 2000 years ago God continues to speak to us through the text?

- The second sentence regarding the connection between the Bible and Jesus' life and ministry, should be expanded upon. It is also a record of who we are, why we are here, the significance of why we needed Jesus, what He accomplished and taught, and why we have hope. You may hit upon these topics in other sections, so they may or may not be needed in this section.

- What about any further inspired books that could possibly be added to the canon?

- Should you comment on how we determined what is "inspired" and what is not?

I hope some of this helps, I will keep reading your drafts and post some more comments and thoughts later.

P.S. You are awesome! Keep up the hard work.

Anonymous said...

Hello,nice post thanks for sharing?. I just joined and I am going to catch up by reading for a while. I hope I can join in soon.