Inspiration

Bible
The doctrine of inspiration has to do with the Bible. The question is about how much of the Scriptures can be attributed to God. The best view seems to be given to us by Jesus Himself. What did He think of the Scriptures? How much can they be trusted? Let’s consider His view:

Whole – Jesus quoted and used the OT consistently throughout His earthly ministry. He validated all of the OT simply by His use of it. In Mt 5:17-18 he said that even the smallest letters and strokes of it would be fulfilled. He also calls it the “law and the prophets” which was a typical way to refer to the whole of the OT. In Lk 24:44 he refers to the law, prophets, and Psalms, making sure that they knew he meant every part of it. In Jn 10:35, Jesus reminded some Jews of Ps 82:6 saying that “Scripture cannot be broken.”

Parts – Jesus’ arguments were supported and strengthened by different parts of the OT. Check Mt 4:4-10; Mt 21:42; 12:18-21

Words – In Mt 22:32 Jesus quotes from Ex 3:6 and His whole argument hinges on the present tense of the word “am.” If the words of the Scriptures were not inspired, His argument would be worthless. In Mt 22:44 a similar things happens – Jesus’ argument is upheld by the phrase “my Lord” from Ps 110:1.  It’s clear that Jesus believed that the words of the Scriptures are inspired.

Letters – Mt 5:18 – Jesus declared, “not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass away from the Law, until all is accomplished.” “Smallest letter” = an apostrophe and Stroke refers to something like the leg on the letter Q.  Jesus believed that every letter was inspired.

New Testament – In John 14:26, Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would  lead the apostles as they wrote out the NT Scriptures, guaranteeing their accuracy. Also check John 16:12-15. Jesus affirmed  not only the OT, but the NT too.

In addition to Jesus, Paul and Peter affirmed the inspiration of the Scriptures.

How does this impact my life? Oh it’s huge! I can trust the Bible! I can rely on it for guidance, encouragement, and simply interacting with God. If every little stroke is inspired then I can pick it apart and study every detail to the smallest degree and discover more and more of God’s message to humanity. It also gives me a standard by which to measure everything. If it were not inspired. . . .gosh, the world would be even more messed up than it already is.

(Info from “The Moody Handbook of Theology” by Paul Enns, pg 162-166)

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