Now we're beginning our study of Bible doctrines in the first section of Bible Doctrines For Today. Today we're beginning with the first chapter on Bibliology. What is Bibliology? It's the study of the Bible. We'll be discussing the doctrine of inspiration We'll be studying how the Bible was written and canonized as well as other topics related to Bibliology.
The first topic we'll be dealing with is plenary verbal inspiration. First, what is the definition of "inspiration" Inspiration means God-breathed. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God." II Timothy 3:16. It's translated from a compound Greek word which means "God-breathed." The Bible is God breathed. God was the one who inspired it but he used various men of both the Old and New Testament to pen down the book. His words were breathed out over a period of 1500 years to 40 specially chosen men to pen down God's words. God did it carefully. God is a God of order and he does things perfectly. He didn't use just any man to pen down His carefully chosen words. God was meticulous on the words he desired to be used when the words were penned down both in Greek and Hebrew. We've had people that claimed to be Bible scholars in some of these more liberal universities who employed the method of "higher criticism" to critique the Bible who posed the questions how could one know exactly how the men who penned down the word couldn't have made a mistake or how did God inspire the men of old to write the Bible. One thing a Christian needs to understand is there are ways that God does things that we can't explain. But God does it and does it perfectly. He knew the men that would used to pen down the Word would use the write words and record every jot and title God wanted used.
First of all, God is the author of the Bible. The Words of the Bible are God-breathed. He used men in both the Old and New Testaments to pen down the Word of God--every jot and tittle. Allow me to quickly tell what inspiration is not. Inspiration is not an athlete, for example, who feels compelled to play above his normal level when competing. It's also not the ability of Handel to completely write out the score in less than one month's time. As phenomenal as that was, that's not Biblical inspiration.
Let's take a look at verbal inspiration. That's God-breathed. The words of the Bible are God-breathed. The word verbal means "by means of words," or "word for word." It means the very words of the Bible when breathed out by God. The scriptures make plain that God gave the exact words of scripture. "The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, and His Word was in my tongue." In II Timothy 3:16 the word translated scripture means the actual writings of God's Word. God dictated to the human writers the actual words that appeared on those manuscripts. God reveals that not only the spelling of the words but the difference between the singular and plural form of a word is God-breathed.
Next time I will conclude the thought that I started on this post.