Torch, Spring 1978

This pivotal passage in the plainest possible terms teaches five great truths: first, the plenary inspiration of the Bible-"all"; secondly, the plenary inspiration specifically of the Old Testament-(later, when the sacred canon was completed, the New Testament, also) "all Scripture"; thirdly, the divine authorship of Scripture-"given by inspiration of God"; fourthly, the supreme value of all Scripture to the spiritual life because of its inspiration and consequent authority-"profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness"; fifthly, the holy purpose of Scripture– "that the man ofGod may be perfect (or complete), throughly furnished unto all goodworks." 3 All scripture is inspired; that is, God-breathed. We believe the words were chosen ofGod so that the writers recorded precisely what God wanted revealed. "Our basic affirmation is that in employing language, God saw to it that the right words were used in the rightway at the right time." 4 This passage in 2 Timothy is not the only and isolated text which suggests the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Scripture. In prophetic language the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, "I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him" (Deut. 18:18). To Jeremiah the prophet God said, "Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth . . .and arise, and speak unto them all that I command thee ... " (Jer. 1:9,17). In the New Testament Christ promised the writers of the New Testament infallible communication by the Holy Spirit (John 14:26). The early Christians accepted this message "not as theword ofmen, but as it is in truth, the word of God . . ." (1 Thess. 2:13). Peter testified to the inspiration of the Scriptures when he wrote, "Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost" (2 Peter 1:21). The phrase, "Thus saith the Lord", or its equivalent, occurs about two thousand times in the Old Testament. If these Biblical quotations mean anything, they do teach that "Those to whom God gave His revelationweremen born of the Holy Spirit, whose messageswere infallibly delivered and absolutely free from error, being precisely the words that God Himselfwished to have declared." 5 FOOTNOTES 1. JamesOrr, The Progress of Dogma (New York: George H. Doran Company, 1901), p. 352. 2. Edward J. Young, Thy Word is Truth (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing House, 1957), p. 5. 3. Merrill F.Unger, "The Inspirationof the Old Testament," Bibliotheca Sacra, CVll, October-December, 1950, (Dal– las: Dallas Theological Seminary), pp. 432, 433. 4. William Fitch, The ImpregnableRock of Holy Scripture (Toronto: Toronto Bible College, 1965), p. 7. 5. Young, op. cit., p. 45. Dr. James T. Jeremiah is the President of Cedarville College. This article is an excerpt from his book The Importance of Inspiration (Des Plaines, Illinois: Regular Baptist Press, 1972). Reprinted by permission. Available from the CedarvilleCollege Bookstore at a cost of $2.95. Ohio residents please enclose 14¢ sales tax. SPECIAL SPEAKERS Twenty men on the faculty and staff of Cedarville College participate in a speaker's bureau for worship services, youth rallies, banquets and other special events. These men also provide an excellent resource for up– to-date information about Cedarville College for local churches, camps and Christian organizations. Those wishing to schedule speakers should contact the Development Of– fice or phone (513) 766-2211, ext. 240. 5 TheBible For further study in regard to the inspiration, inerrancy and authority of God's Word, we sug– gest the following books and arti– cles: IN DEPTH Biblical Revelation by Clark Pinnock (Moody, 1971) A well organized and detailed presentation of the fact and theological implications of inspira– tion. HowWe GotOur Bible byW. H. Grif– fith Thomas (Moody, 1926) & small, large-print, newly published edition of avery popular and complete book about the characteristics of God's Word. The Battle for The Bible by Harold Lindsel l (Zondervan, 1976) A controversial treatment of the topic of inerrancy and its historyon the American theological scene. The Books And The Parchments by F. F. Bruce (Revell, 1950) A scholarly explanation of the languages, canons, texts and translations of the Bible. The Importance Of Inspiration by James T. Jeremiah (Regular Baptist Press, 1972) A concise presentation of the relat ionship of inspiration to other major Biblical doctrines. The Inspiration And Authority of Scripture by Rene Pache (Moody, 1969) Perhaps the most organized and popular book concerning the doctrine of the Bible. BRIEFLY NOTED "Inspiration" by Harold Lindsell in The Zondervan Pictorial En– cyclopedia Of The Bible (Zondervan, 1975) "Inspiration" by Clark Pinnock in the Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia (Moody, 1975) "IsThe Bible Inspired?" inA Surveyof Bible Doctrine by Charles Ryrie (Moody, 1972) "The Word of God" in The BibleHas The Answer by Henry M. Morris and Martin Clark (Creation-Life, 1976)