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In the second book in this series, we examine how God reveals himself, and with particular reference to the ultimate truth that he has given in the revelation of Scripture. We focus on what is really meant by the words ‘inspiration’ and ‘inerrancy’ and why it is so important, and correct, to defend these claims from the text of the Bible itself: ‘All Scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work’ (2 Timothy 3:16-17). A careful definition of how the Scriptures came to us distinguishes a true belief in biblical authority from more vague or rigid ideas. A survey of the history of Biblical inerrancy shows that this vital truth has always been the position of the greatest theologians of the past centuries.
The third and fourth chapters, discuss how Jesus used the Hebrew Scriptures (our Old Testament), and similarly how the apostles used those Scriptures, and why they were often using a Greek translation rather than the Hebrew Old Testament. We may be surprised at how frequently the apostles used the Old Testament in their writing; for them, the New certainly did not dispense with the Old.
The Old Testament prophets, Jesus himself, and the apostles in their letters, each made uncompromising claims for the absolute authority of both the Old Testament Scriptures and their own words. Were they right? And do they each agree with one another?
We must also answer the question: Is the Bible enough? Can anything be added to it, and is it sufficient and final? What do we mean when we speak of the sufficiency of Scripture? Does it tell us everything we need to know about everything, or only everything we need to know about some things? These are all questions that need to be carefully unravelled so that we don’t fall into the danger of making claims that are either too general or too restrictive.
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