All Scripture Is Given By Inspiration
Pastor Ho Soo Kam
PO Box 571, Marine Parade Post Office, Singapore 9144, Republic of Singapore
ADORN THE DOCTRINE OF GOD OUR SAVIOUR
The starting point of all doctrinal studies must be the Bible the word of God, that is, the holy scripture of 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament. If we deny that the Bible is, without qualification, the very word of God, we are left without any truth and without any supreme and final authority. It is presumptuous and hypothetical to discuss any doctrine taught by the Bible until we acknowledged, unreservedly, the doctrine of the divine plenary verbal inspiration of the Bible and its divine preservation by God. Believe that the Bible is the divine revelation and communication of God's own mind and will to men, in pure words, and we have a fixed starting point from which advance can be made into the domain of truth. We are sure that "all scripture is given by inspiration of God". (2 Timothy 3:16).
God the Holy Spirit directed even in the very words and expression for these were "words which the Holy Ghost teacheth" (1 Corinthians 2:13). and God saith to the prophet, "speak with my words" (Ezekiel 3:4). It is impossible to overestimate the importance of the doctrine of the divine inspiration and preservation of the holy scriptures.
This is the strategic centre of Christian doctrine, and must be preached and defended at all cost. It is the point at which Satan is constantly hurling his hellish forces of darkness and corruption.
"Plenary" means full and complete, "ALL scripture" (2 Timothy 3:16). that is all scripture that can be called "scripture", critically careful to include minute details. "Verbal" means that the very words of the scripture were given to the writers, and not just the ideas they convey. The writers were not left to choose the words. At the same time God did not destroy or ignore their different personalities. The writings of Paul may differ in style from the writings of John or James. However the Almighty God who created the heavens and the earth with the words of his mouth gave his words through men, using their individual personalities and traits without changing the doctrine or the truth that these are the very words that proceedeth out of his mouth. "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." (Matthew 4:4)
The expression "Thus saith the Lord" or "The Lord spake saying" and similar phrases occur some 560 times in the Pentateuch, some 300 times in the historical and poetic books, 1200 times in the prophets and 24 times alone in Malachi, the last book of the Old Testament.
We believe in full inspiration because of the inner connection of thought and word. For the unmistakable expressing of thought there is necessarily a careful choice of corresponding words.
Everything, if it is to attain to a clear unfolding of a real thought or "idea" reveals itself in words. A thought only becomes properly a conscious thought if out of the subconscious realm of sensation and the indeterminate impression of will and feeling, a word is born. The word may be regarded as the body of the thought, giving the spirit "visibility" and form.
In reference to the inspiration of the Bible the foregoing means that if the thoughts are inspired then must the words also be so, in whatever language the holy scripture is given. For the God of inspiration is also the God of history and languages (Genesis 11:6-9) "But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding." (Job 32:8)
Without inspiration of its words the thoughts of the scripture would be without distinct form. A certain change (variation) of the words ALWAYS include a more or less definite change of the thoughts. Christ did not say of his thoughts but of his words that they are spirit and life. "... the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life." (John 6:63b). All the words which the Bible writers should speak and write were prescribed exactly to them; with the ideas, God the Holy Spirit at the same time gave them the words. We contend for every word of the Bible and believe in the verbal literal inspiration of the holy scripture. Indeed there can be no other kind of inspiration. If the words are taken from us, the exact meaning is of itself lost in any language. "Every word of God is pure." (Proverbs 30:5a)
Words are used in the scripture with the most exact precision and discrimination. The names Elohim and Jehovah are found on the pages of the Old Testament several thousand times, but they are never employed loosely or used alternately. Each of these names has a definite significance and scope, and were we to substitute the one for the other, the beauty and perfection of a multitude of passages would be destroyed. To illustrate, the word "God" occurs all through Genesis chapter one, but "Lord God" in Genesis chapter two. Were these two divine titles reversed here a flaw and blemish would be the consequence. "God" is the creatorial title, whereas "Lord" implies covenant relationship and shows God's dealings with his own people. Throughout the remainder of the Old Testament these two divine titles are used discriminately and in harmony with the meaning of their first mention.
Here is another example: "And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It is the king of Israel. Therefore they compassed about him to fight: but Jehoshaphat cried out, and 'the Lord' helped him; and 'God' moved them (the Syrians) to depart from him" (2 Chronicles 18:31). Israel was blessed with a covenant relationship with God, therefore the covenantal title "Lord" helped Jehoshaphat, the king of Israel. As for the Syrians who know not the only true and living God, the God of the Bible, the creatorial title "God" was used.
The above line of argument might be extended indefinitely. There are upwards of fifty divine titles in the old Testament that are used more than once, each of which has a definite signification. Its meaning hinted at in its first mention, and each of which is used subsequently in harmony with its original purport. They are never used loosely or interchangeable. In every place where they occur there is a reason for each variation. Such titles as the Most high, the Almighty, the God of Israel, the God of Jacob, the Lord our Righteousness are not used haphazardly, but in every case in harmony with their original meaning and as the best title suited to the context. The same is true in connection with the names of our Lord in the New Testament. In some passages he is referred 10 as Christ, in others as Jesus, Jesus Christ, Christ Jesus, Lord Jesus Christ. In every instance there is a reason for each variation, and in every case the Holy Spirit has seen to it that they are employed with uniform significance. Today, in the English language, only the Authorised King James Bible adhered strictly and uniformly to the exact precision and discrimination of words. This is because the Authorised King James Bible is the scripture in the English language for this generation. "... the scripture cannot be broken." (John 10:35). The word-by-word inspiration of the holy scripture is clearly stated when God said through Moses: "My speech (words) shall distil as the dew." (Deuteronomy 32:2).
Dew is distilled by the condensation of water vapour. Water is a symbol of the word of God (Ephesians 5:26; John 3:5; Titus). The dew falling from heaven, no matter how light or heavy, still comes down In distinctive drops. Today in the English language, only the Authorised King James Bible follows meticulously the literal word for word translation from the Textus Receptus or Received Text.
All scripture is given by inspiration of God and He has also preserved every word of the Bible.
"The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou Shalt keep them. 0 LORD, thou shalt PRESERVE them from this generation for ever." (Psalm 12:6,7) "Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away." (Matthew 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 21:33).
"For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: But the word of the Lord endureth forever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you." (1 Peter 1:23,25) "The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: But the word of our God shall stand forever." (Isaiah 40:8) God has preserved the scripture for us so that the scripture we hold in our hands is "God-breathed". This is why the scripture is able to quicken us. "This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me." (Psalm 119:50)
"I will never forget thy precepts: for with them thou has quickened me." (Psalm 119:93).
"For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." (Hebrews 4:12)
These are experiential truth which every Bible-believing Christian knows from his own contact with the holy scripture.
God in his great faithfulness has preserved the scripture so that what we have is inerrant and infallible. "Inerrant" means free from error or mistake. "The Law of the Lord is PERFECT, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple." (Psalm 19:7)
"For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightaway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
But whoso looketh into the PERFECT law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed." (James 1:23-25)
"Infallible" means free from error, unfailing and true. What God said must come to pass. "Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgements endureth for ever." (Psalm 119:160)
"For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law till all be fulfilled." (Matthew 5:18)
"And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail" (Luke 16:17)
The question of inerrancy and infallibility do not even arise if there is no divine preservation. (Psalm 12:6, 7)
One of the biggest deception foisted on Christians by the Devil and his demons is that only the "original autographs" were inspired. Under the light of scripture, this deception is exposed.
The apostle Paul wrote to Timonthy, "And that from a child thou has known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." (2 Timothy 3:15). Was Paul inferring that, from his childhood, Timothy has access to the original autograph manuscripts of Moses, Isaiah and Jeremiah? Certainly not. Those autograph manuscripts had most likely turned to dust centuries before Timothy was born. Paul did, however, view the copies that Timothy held in his hands as being the inspired word of God, divinely preserved through countless copyings.
And in the very next verse (2 Timothy 3:16), Paul said "All scripture is given by inspiration of God ..." (No mention of "originals").
If Timothy had the "original autograph manuscripts", the Berean Christians could not at the same time have it. Yet what the Christians at Berea had were referred to as "the scriptures" "And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures, daily, whether those things were so." (Acts 17:10,11)
Obviously, the Bereans had full confidence that those copies of scriptures were the divinely preserved word of God because God said He would preserve His word and they believed God. Our Lord Jesus Christ asked" have ye not read this scripture?" (Mark 12:1 0) "Did ye never read in the scriptures?" (Matthew 21:42). Would our Lord asked such questions if there was no scripture in the hands of the people. Our Lord Jesus Christ said to the Sadducees "Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures ..." (Matthew 22:29) He told the Jews "Search the scriptures ..." (John 5:39)
Our Lord Jesus Christ knew the people had the divinely preserved scriptures in their hands. One more example from Luke 4:16-21. "And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and, recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears."
Our Lord Jesus Christ was reading from the book of Isaiah, which was in the synagogue at Nazareth and which he referred to as "scripture". In Acts 8:26-39, the Ethiopian Eunuch was also reading the book of Isaiah which was also referred to as "scripture" (Acts 8:32)
With Philip preaching from "the scripture" the Ethiopian Eunuch was made "wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus" (2 Timothy 3:15) "All scripture is given by inspiration of God..." (2 Timothy 3:16). Inspiration does not evaporate with copyings and all divinely preserved scripture is given by inspiration of God. It is "God-breathed", that is why it is able to convert the soul of the Ethiopian Eunuch who was "born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever" (1 Peter 1:23) and the Ethiopian Eunuch "went on his way rejoicing" (Acts 8:39)
The Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew and the New Testament in Greek. In the New Testament, there are hundreds of quotations from the Old Testament that were translated into Greek. Our Lord Jesus Christ in the wilderness quoted from the book of Deuteronomy to defeat Satan (Matthew 4:1-11). Micah 5:2, a prophecy in the Old Testament concerning the place of birth of our Lord was quoted in Matthew 2:6. The apostle Paul when writing Romans 4:7,8 was quoting and translating Psalm 32:1,2 from Hebrew to Greek. The Lord on the Damascus road spoke to Saul of Tarsus in "the Hebrew tongue" (Acts 26:14). What the Lord said in "the Hebrew tongue" had to be translated in the Book of Acts to Greek. Inspiration does not evaporate with translation. Look at the two diagrams in this tract. One showing all the scripture and the other the line of corruption, and remember "all scripture is given by inspiration of God ..." (2 Timothy 3:16)
James) Bible in our hands, we can be sure that it is the word of God, "the scripture" in the English language and "all scripture IS (present tense) given by inspiration of God" (2 Timothy 3:16), is preserved by God (Psalm 12:6,7) and is therefore inerrant and infallible because every word of God is very pure (Psalm 119:140), and is the final and absolute authority for all matters of our faith and conduct. Read, study, meditate, believe, love live and obey this Bible and you shall daily "with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed unto the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." (2 Corinthians 3:18)
"For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God." (2 Corinthians 2:17)
"A corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit ... neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit." (Matthew 7:17,18)
"For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ." (Philippians 3:18
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Timothy 3:16)
"Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit ... A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit." (Matthew 7:17,18)
"For if the first fruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches" (Romans 11:16)
How sweet are thy words uuto my taste yea sweeter than honey to my mouth! I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil
"For ever, 0 LORD, thy word is settled in heaven." (Psalm 119:89)
"For ever, 0 LORD, thy word is settled in heaven."
"Thy word is true from the beginning: and everyone of thy righteous judgements endureth for ever." (Psalm 119:160)
"Every word of God is pure. He is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." (Proverbs 30:5,6)
"What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." (Deuteronomy 12:32)
"For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book. If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book. And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." (Revelation 22:18,19)
"For the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ." (Revelation 1:9)
"To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. " (Isaiah 8:20)
All quotations from the holy scripture are from the Authorised (King James) Bible only
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